Wednesday, April 17, 2013

The End

I wrote this in 2009, a few months after my brother-in-law committed suicide.   

The End.

It is so final.

The End of a string,
The End of a song,
The End of a story,
The End of a project.

We sit and wonder: what is next.

Sometimes we are relieved to see The End.
A bad movie.
An illness.
A class with a terrible teacher.

Yet... we ask how it could have been better. We wish for the time back. At The End of a terrible thing, we want to fix it; turn it into a good thing.

Except, there is no going back, there are no do-overs.

The End is sad, yet we are rushed through mourning. Our culture doesn't allow for us to stop to say “Good-bye." We want to blaze on and ignore the pain.

In blazing through goodbyes we miss appreciating what was before The End. Is it not true that sitting with pain for a season gives a place for creativity? Is it not out of pain that we learn?

Death is the ultimate The End. We all try to convince ourselves that it is a natural flow of life, yet it is jarring. In Christianity, we look to the eternal. Somehow in that discipline of hope, we seem to forget a person is gone. We are reluctant to sit and be sad about The End.

Yes, we believe the person’s spirit lives on and we are given assurance. Yet, the reality is, a physical person left a vaccum when The End was met. We long for one more conversation. We wish for one more laugh. We don’t want to accept The End.

It begs a question: what to do?

One thought is; to sit with The End. Not to try and fix it or rewrite what happened. To choose gratitude for their stories. Sit and be sad in the remembrances  Allow it to impact our lives and shape the future. Just because it is The End, does not mean it is to be left behind or forgotten.
In Mr. Magorium's Wonder Emporium, The End is described as the beginning of something else.

What to do with The End of people?

Death by accident teaches us that life is not permanent. Speak the good. Compliment those around us. Speak love and value in each moment with others to leave no room for regret.

Suicide, teaches us that dying is easy. Living is hard. Choosing death may be a momentary relief; but it shifts problems onto the people left behind birthing a whole new category of questions.  Life is earned as we face each grief, dilemma and disappointment.

If we were to talk to those who faced The End, they might say things like:
Don’t hurry. Be sad and miss me. Make the most of every opportunity. Live remembering my life instead of the death.
Build upon the gifts and lessons: If hope was lost, have hope. If they created, then create. If sowed joy into life, then throw seeds of joy towards others. If they were truthful and challenged the status quo, continue what they started…

Remember their lives and learn. The End.


  1. ..........hmmm, it's the day for sad posts. You are so right in so many things. We don't allow time to grieve and grieving takes years.
    Thank you for sharing something so personal, and thank you for hooking up at the Hump Day Hook Up.

    1. Thanks for commenting. It is taking me a little while to figure the ins and outs of blogging.

  2. CountingMutuant here. The end can be so sudden, shocking. One side is pain, on the other side is the unknown. Feelings can be hard to sort out.


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