I choose ‘Death’ from my list today because it feels fitting, having preceded with ‘Babies’ and ‘Marriage’.
You see, I have a long-held suspicion that one driving factor for getting married, and also having children, is motivated by death. Or more, the fear of dying alone.
The cliched cry of the single woman (always woman, huh, never the man) is ‘I’m going to be single forever, I’m going to die alone and eaten by my 35 cats!’.
One plead I hear when I state my aversion to parenthood is ‘but who will look after you when you’re old?’. As if having a child is the equivalent of birthing a designated care-giver for the elderly.
Firstly, that’s a shitty reason for having a child. No one deserves that pressure or expectation, and if that’s a motivating factor, then you should not be a parent.
Secondly, you can have 16 children, but that's not going to stop them moving to the other side of the world, growing up to hate your guts, or be too busy with their own families to be able to be at your side every day of your old age.
My grandmother had eight children. She devoted her life to her husband and raising her family She had good relationships with them all, and by the end, five of her children were lived in the same town as her. However she still died alone, suddenly, in her house, without her loved ones to which she gave her life, by her side.
Because one thing is certain about death – no one knows how or when or how it’s going to happen. So why live your life and make decisions based on your perceived death, sometime in the future?
Death is scary. But the only thing that brings comfort is knowing that you can live a full and exciting life, and that you are lucky for that opportunity.
The Mexicans with their Day of the Dead festivities, and New Orleans’ Jazz Funeral’s have it right. It's a time for sadness. But it’s a time for celebration of a life well lived.
Life is to be celebrated. It’s precious and special. And I do believe that we only get one shot.
Don’t waste it with someone who doesn't give you their all, or treat you like they should. Don’t waste each day wishing you were 10kg lighter, that ‘life begins’ when you fit into those jeans. Life begins now.
And don’t do things because you feel they are expected of you, or what everyone else is doing. Think about what you want. You do have a choice.
Just do you.
P.S. If I ever go unexpectedly, I have a playlist prepared – my all time top 10, my funeral, my legacy and taste by which I wish to be remembered.
Please don't let my mum play Ed Sheeran.
I suggest you make one too. Because you won't be there to DJ.