I read a letter from a mom in a column in the newspaper the other day. Her five-year-old daughter was very worried about death and was staying awake nights worrying about it. Her mom didn’t know what to tell the girl.
As an atheist, I probably worry about death more than a believer. I don’t really think there’s any kind of life after death, and it’s difficult to know that some day it will all be over. I’ve given up hope of ever seeing my family and friends again, or a future life for myself. I have stayed up a few nights worrying about it.
I don’t usually get my theology or philosophy from Facebook or Instagram, but I saw a post the other day that made me feel much better about my life – and my death.
A little boy is sitting next to a Snoopy-like dog, and the little boy says, “One day, we will die.”
And the dog answers, “Yes, but every other day we will live.”
And somehow everything clicked into place when I read that. All I will ever know is this one day – this perfect gift of today. And I’ve been incredibly lucky to have experienced 25,550 of them. I’ve been able to live and love and be happy. I’ve experienced things and places that I’d only dreamt about and have been privileged to know some amazing people.
I had been worrying about death for a long time. When I was a little girl, I worried about my parents dying. Since then I’ve seen death and I’ve been close to it myself, and I don’t want to waste any more time worrying about it.
What a gift I’ve been given – each day. And I hope to have many more. And not waste them worrying about that one day in the future when there will be no more.
I want to laugh, listen to the rain and talk to my friends, pet my cats and dog, play beautiful music on the piano, and love every minute of every day.
“Every other day we will live.” What a beautiful thought.