I was 5 years old. I wore a beige colored Kasaya. She peacefully took her last breath at a very old age during her daily bath. As the great grandson, my job at the funeral was to sit cross legged beside the monks and strike a wooden fish every 5 seconds. I never asked why. I think I must always knew it was just the way it is.
I was never afraid of funerals. I have been to only a few since. I enjoyed them. My friend’s son; my secretary of 25 years, my uncle. Never yet attended a patient’s funeral; I don’t know why. I think I will go one day when I have more time. I think I will really appreciate the moments to reflect.
The other day, I went to visit a friend at a cancer respite care. She was sleeping; so I had a chat with a young volunteer. I was surprised when she told me she was glad when her name finally came up on the waiting list for people who wanted to volunteer there. I think perhaps being able to share moments with people dying with cancer is a privileged opportunity to almost touch death and understand life just a little better.
I don’t know if I’ll die suddenly or slowly. Perhaps the advantage of dying slowly from something like cancer is that it might give me just enough time to realize life does have a last page; and decide what I want to write in my final chapter.
I now realize what’s in my bucket list:
1. Surprises
2. Blessings
3. Vividness of each moment
Thank you for the moment!

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