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Death and Dying

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    Death and Dying

    Death is a part of life. This is one commonality we all share. Death does not choose a race, religion, gender, or age.Ironically, the one event we all share is the one event many people do not talk about. This taboo topic leaves us with the thoughts “What do I say?,” “What do I do?,” “How am I supposed to act?” when we are faced with death. These are all very valid thoughts and are shared amongst many.

    Ironically something that is curious, or surprising.

    Elizabeth Kubler-Ross defined the stages of bereavement or grief. Each phase has its own unique feelings and no two people experience grief the same way. Each person will experience some, or all, of the stages and each person will take a different amount of time to reach the acceptance stage. Some people will never reach the acceptance stage, as the grief is just too much for them to handle. The stages can be experienced by the person who is dying and/or by their loved ones. On a side note, the stages of grief can be experienced anytime we feel grief (a death of a loved one, a loss of a relationship, etc.) 



    “I will get another opinion as there is no way Grammy has only 30 days to live.” 

    This stage is when a person refuses to believe the loss has happened or is about to happen. Their denial can sometimes cause anger and a person can fluctuate between anger and denial.


    “It’s not fair. Why me?” 

    The person who is dying may become angry at people for a couple of reasons. One, the ill person may be trying to push the people away so their loved ones do not have to physically see them dying. Another reason may be the person who is dying has not had the opportunity to accomplish all that life has to offer. The loved ones of the person whom is dying may be angry at the person who is dying because he/she is "leaving them."


    “Please, God, if you let me live until Thanksgiving, I promise I will eat healthy and sleep regularly.” 

    This can happen when a person is not ready to accept that the end is near. This plea is the attempt to hold on to what they have. Sometimes a loved one of the person who is dying may try to bargain, usually with God, to take them and not the dying person.


    "I am going to miss you so much. I will be so sad without you.” 

    The idea of living a life without the loved one is a very harsh reality and many people cannot accept this. A person who is dying might also become depressed knowing that he or she cannot do the things he or she has always done for themselves.


    “I know death is a part of life. I am at peace with this realization.” 

    When this stage is achieved, it usually signals the last stage and there is no more fluctuation between the stages. This is the peaceful understanding of the person’s death.