Dying to live

I’m going to die.

I’ve only just really realised this. It never seemed like a real possibility before. But, I’m going to die and that knowledge has a massive impact on how I want to live.

The suddeness of my mum’s – what shall I call it? – demise? life’s end? shocked me to my core. One minute she is talking to me on the phone, laughing and telling me she loves me, and then goes to read to my daughters and put them to bed. An hour later, it’s all over. Her life as we all knew it. One minute she was involved in every aspect of my life, and the next, she became someone who doesn’t know my name.

Now that I know my death is not only a possibility but a definite, I want to make sure I’m really living. I want to be with my girls every day of their lives although I know (I hope) I won’t. So I have to make the days I do have, count. I want to write the bloody novel that is haunting me at night. I want to stop being tired and start being energetic. I want to eat as much chocolate as I can and still be a size ten (OK, that’s just fantasy I know, but part of living is dreaming surely?)

Admittedly at the moment I already feel half dead – sleep might be something we can do when we’re dead, but lack of it makes living pretty hard. BUT, Ruby has slept through for the last three nights, so I’m holding my breath in the belief that we might finally be seeing the light…
I’m dying, but I’m also living. And maybe one of the things I will take from the last five months is that every day I’m living, I’m appreciating the fact that I’m dying – and that is inspiring me to live better.

About Grin & Tonic by Alana Kirk

Bouncing into middle age armed with courage, ambition and a pair of tweezers (chin hairs for anyone over the age of 45 reading this) I am a writer with a mission: to redefine this midway point in my life when the last thing I want to do is hang up my high heels and become invisible. This is the end of the beginning, not the beginning of the end. A single mum to 3 fabulous girls, an author, and a fundraising consultant, both ends of my candle are on fire. As I enter this new stage of my life, I want to explore what it means for 'mid-aged' women today, who were promised they could have it all, ended up doing it all, and just do not identify with the traditional image of middle age.
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5 Responses to Dying to live

  1. Mary says:

    You've been through so much, and most of it in a sleep-deprived state. I'm glad Ruby is giving you some respite now.

    And, I understand…I am also energized to live more fully when I think of my mother's battle with cancer. I guess we are that age.

    Lovely new picture of you with all three of your girls!


  2. This is such a confronting post, yet incredibly inspirational. It's a thought that enters my mind, probably more often than it should also. Though thinking this way does force you to appreciate what you have in the here and now. It MAKES you hold on bloody tight. Good luck with your journey… I do enjoy the way in which you are writing about it. Very real.


  3. Good news that Ruby has been sleeping through. Sleep deprivation on top of everything else you have going on must have made life near-impossible.

    I absolutely adore this post. We want to move house next year and until then I've felt as if I'm just waiting for the day we can start a new life in a new part of the world. So I've been missing out on living now and enjoying today. I'm going to go off and do that now. Hugs to you all. xxx


  4. cath c says:

    what a great way to look at it.

    (btw-sorry about care package delay, toots and consequently the rest of the family came down with a stomch bug)


  5. Oh yes – I totally understand what you are saying. Life/death wanting to appreciate your kids every day and fill them with as much love and joy as you can – while also trying to balance that with your own needs (or in your case at the moment the total lack of 'meeting your own needs' that sleep deprivation and young babies bring). Yay that Ruby is sleeping more!!!! More sleep is on its way and emotional stuff is much easier when you've got some sleep credits built up.

    Thank you so much for your supportive and caring comments on my blog 🙂 You make me smile, but also remind me of how hard life is with no sleep, 3 little people to care for and a life to live. Love your new header photo too. Look how much your beautiful pinks have grown up!!!


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