In This Time of Great Fear, DYING 101

People don’t die like they do in the movies—alive one minute, saying something profound and dead the next. There is a way that the body dies. A way it is programed to die. It’s just that most of us don’t think about it, don’t know and generally don’t want to think or know about it. This is part of the death denying society that we live in.

I’m going to talk about dying. I have spent most of my life talking about death and now more than ever I want to explain the normal way the body dies.

This is a time of great fear in our country and a huge portion of the fear evolves around dying, probably the thing we fear the most, certainly Americans fear the most.

Knowledge reduces fear so here is Dying 101.

There are only 2 ways to die. Fast, getting hit by a truck, heart attack or suicide to name a few. Gradual death, the other way we die, is either old age, (the body just wears out and you die) or disease. We get a disease that the doctors can’t fix, that our body can’t fight and we die.

Dying from the coronavirus is considered a gradual death (disease) that can happen rapidly.

There is a process that occurs with gradual death. Certain things happen at certain times. If death just suddenly happened it would be fast death. The changes that occur in gradual death occur on a timeline, from months, weeks, days, hours and minutes.

With the coronavirus the gradual dying signs will begin in the days to hours before the dying time frame. Up to that time they will be very sick, have difficulty breathing but not appear to be dying.

Most people are going to be isolated in some kind of medical facility, surrounded by machines, and tubes but I think the fear we carry is not about the machines or tubes but about how am I going to feel? I’m scared about what I will feel like when all of this is going on.

Think about a time when you were the sickest you have ever been. During the sickest time you don’t remember much if anything. What you remember is when you were past the critical point and you hear what others told you happened.

During the worse part of a severe illness our mind just kind of blanks itself. That makes me believe that the person dying isn’t really aware of what is happening round and about them. However, most of us watchers observe what is happening and think the person dying is thinking, feeling, experiencing the world in the same way the watchers are. I don’t believe that is true. I have been with so many people in their last hours to minutes and have consistently observed their lack of connection, lack of fear, and lack of awareness.

In this time of great fear and uncertainty my wish for us, along with health, safety, and support, is knowledge. Knowledge of how to live in this crisis and knowledge of how to die in this crisis. We may be doing both.

Something More about... In This Time of Great Fear, DYING 101

My end of life booklets are available as ebooks. The goal of this series is to neutralize some of the fear that an unpredictable future may bring. Knowledge of the dying process and its natural and normal unfolding can help create a meaningful and comforting experience as a loved one journeys from life.

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Merilynne Rush

Dear Barbara,
Thank you so much for this very soothing post. It really helps calm the terrible distress we “watchers” feel. You are an amazing caregiver to us all.

Jimmy Ennis

I have just recently lost the love of my life and 56 wonderful years of marriage ,and I am having a hard time with it and have even considered suicide but I read all the books about nde experience and grieving books but I just can’t get any peace and I just break down for hours and cry. I am just about at my rows end.

Mary A Debnam

Thanks for your emails,and you perspective ,about what to do and
how to feel and understand things in this crisis we are having.

I have read all of your books and they have helped me through a lot
of things.
My husband ,the love of my life for 59 years ,died from Alz. A little
over a year ago. The hospice care had one of your books in their packet.
that is how I got acquainted with your books..
Thanks for the work you do.

DrCheryl Demalignon

Thank you so much for your understanding of what it means to die and what the death process entails. I think most people are more afraid of dying and thus not living in the moment.If we can get a grip on understanding and not fearing what is going to be the end of our journey here on earth, maybe we can accept that death is just another transformation we all will make, maybe we can reduce fear and learn how to truly love and be in the present! This will reduce issues like the coronavirus that has shaken the universe to its core.

Dr Cheryl Ann Demalignon
Transpersonal Psychologist
Transpersonal Relationship Growth

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