On the topic of death, Mark Twain quoted,” The fear of death follows from the fear of life. A man who lives fully is prepared to die any time.”

Before Mark Twain’s own passing, on April 21, 1910, he was enlightened by the topic of death and often found humor in how the world would be a horrible place if we had to be around forever. Death deserves no less an important aspect in our life, just as birth does. Death is life, and it is the one thing that we will all experience one day.

I’ve learned through supporting others, that the loss of a loved one, an illness, or as we simply get older, death has a way of drawing us closer to our own mortality and what is meaningful in our life. It is unfortunately something we tend to fear or try to avoid discussing. Nothing makes you more present in life than death. It has long been practiced by ancient Greek scholars, and the Buddha, who suggest that it is important and enlightening to always keep death in mind, to appreciate life more, and to remain humble in the face of adversity. In the practice of meditation, it can be viewed to dissolve our ego to a pure enlightened self in the preparation for one’s death. The conversation of death might not always be comfortable, however, in understanding death and recognizing the value of exploring and preparing for it, not only can we create a meaningful ending, but within the process we can discover and embrace a more meaningful life.

In the exploration and planning for death, we can help identify what brings us joy, nurtures our soul, and brings meaning to our lives. In discussing our end-of-life, it can also bring forward the pain and fears that may limit us from living a more meaningful life. I like to refer to these experiences as unexplored pain, unfinished business or perhaps regrets that exist in our life that can hold us back from the peace, love, and joy needed to create a more meaningful life and ending.

We often plan the best for life, and death deserves no less. No matter how hard or scary it may be to think about our death, it is inevitable, and it is a life event, not just a medical event.

When I began Meaningful Endings, my focus was initially to support individuals and their families in the planning and preparation of end-of-life while also offering grief counselling if needed. What I discovered was that in helping others create a meaningful ending, not only did the process encourage to honor their end-of-life wishes for tomorrow, but it also supported a more meaningful life today. There are many reasons for planning for death but here are some of the key reasons and responses I have heard to date:

  • To create the opportunity for a meaningful and peaceful end
  • To gain a sense of peace of mind if death happens suddenly
  • To relieve the burden of decision making from the family
  • To take care of unfinished business
  • To have control of one’s own life and death
  • To prepare for retirement and part of wellness
  • To be organized and manage end-of life properly
  • To be free from worries, or fears, or anxieties around death
  • To ease worries of having been diagnosed with an illness
  • To ensure that one’s affairs are legally in order
  • To put one’s mind at ease that their wishes are understood and will be respected

Perhaps this journal entry resonates with you because of your loss of a loved one, raises concerns or questions about death, or you have an interest in preparing for your ending. For further information on how to begin your journey towards a meaningful ending, please reach out for your free 60-minute consultation in my contact page.