House of Paula

An Interesting Photo Essay

Posted on: April 15, 2008

While I’m not a regular reader of Dooce, I do visit her site once in a while because she has some interesting perspectives on things. Some of it I agree with and some I don’t, but ya know what, it’s her web site and she can write whatever she wants on it.

A recent post over there stirred up some controversy, Dooce posted about a photo essay in The Guardian that features portraits of people before and after their death [NOTE: If you open this link and don’t like what you see, please don’t whine to me about it – You are responsible for your own choices.]. I looked at the pictures and it fascinates me how different the people look in life and death.  The stories that went with the pictures were interesting to me as well. They gave me a snippet of who the person was, along with some of their thoughts on their impending death.

The first 3 months of this year have been focused on living and dying. The living part is that I’ve been sick several times and for longer durations than I am normally accustomed too. It was nothing serious (repeated colds that lasted forever, a quick bout of food poisoning) but it made me aware that as I get older, my ability to bounce back is getting less. It also made me aware of how important it is to do the things that I love to do. Because wanting to do something and not being able to do it because you aren’t feeling well sucks.

The dying focus came from severals sources. A cousin of mine was horribly murdered by her son. R’s father passed after a long bout of pneumonia. My friend Susan lost her father about a month later. A friend of the family is dealing with Stage 4 Breast Cancer. And there’s my Mother’s unending battle with renal failure.  All of this has stirred up stuff related to my father’s death 14 years ago and has caused some introspection. I’m not sure where this stuff is going to take me,  but it has impacted me enough to make sure that I am focusing on my goals, making my life better and exploring my thoughts in this and other areas.

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