Nothing lasts forever. Everything has an expiry date and a date that it will cease or end. This life is a journey. Everyone is on their own journey. This world is like a temporary stop off. Death is a journey into the unknown. That's why many people are afraid of it. No one really knows exactly what happens after one dies, and there's been no one who has died and returned to share their experiences.
Various religions give their explanations as to what happens after you die. Some people are not scared to die and live their lives recklessly. They don't believe there's an after life or anything of the sort. some believe that there's an eternal after life, heaven and hell and judgement day. Some believe that they will be reincarnated. Some believe that once you die, that's it. Your body rots away and that is the end of your time.
Death is a journey we will all inevitably face one day. None of us truly know when our time will be up, but we know that at some point we will be faced with it. "Every soul shall taste Death".. And none us, no matter how rich, how poor, how pretty, tall, short, smart or strong will be able to escape this harsh reality.
As the death process begins, I think a person starts on their mental journey and path of discovery, comprehending and accepting that indeed death is going to occur.
When a person feels like their life is coming to an end, they begin to withdraw from their surroundings. They begin to disconnect from the stuff they used to do and the people around them.
It's as they're detaching and separating themselves from this world (dunya). They begin to reflect on their life and how they lived it. They begin to repent and ask God to guide them and forgive them for the mistakes they made.
Depending on how a person dies, some may experience a huge decline in their appetite as their body shuts down. Food and water no longer becomes a necessity or a need. The person's weight starts to rapidly decline and the body begins to slow down. The dying person may be sleeping more as the body begins to shut down.
They can possibly hear what's going on around them but they are too weak to engage in conversation or respond to anyone or anything. It's known that hearing is the last sense to go, so up until a person dies, they may be able to hear everything that is taking place around them.
The dying person may be disorientated as they embark on their journey. They be scared as to what is yet to come.
At this point the body starts to have difficulty in maintaining itself as it once did. Body temperatures may fall increasingly, skin colour may begin to change and breathing patterns may alter. They may not be able to control their bowel movements as their body shuts down.
Eventually the person's breathing will cease altogether and the persons heart will stop. At this point a person will be confirmed to be clinically dead.
Separation and saying goodbye is always hard. Especially when you lose someone that you were so close to, or whom you loved deeply. It's difficult to comprehend never seeing somebody again, never having conversation with that person, never sharing the good times with them again. The mind is complicated but so advanced, yet there are some things that us as human beings just cannot understand. We all know that we'll die eventually, and we cannot escape from that fact, but dealing with it is another matter totally.
Grief, sadness and loss is dealt with differently by people. After the death of a loved one, people often go through various stages in their life, such as denial, confusion, anger, sadness, depression, calm and then accepting. It's a difficult journey for the ones that are left behind as indeed it must be for the one that has died.
My advice to those that have lost a loved one is, try and surround yourself with the people that care about you. They don't have to be blood relatives or anyone in particular, just those that you feel comfortable with. Talk about it, cry if you have to, write about it, share your feelings, because harbouring thoughts can be destructive to the mind in the long run. Take time to be alone, to understand, to think, to remember and to reflect. Take time to come to terms with your grief and your loss.
Cut off the people that are causing you added stress in your life, as at this time you'll be vulnerable and delicate. You don't need any other additional garbage weighing you down. If people cannot understand how serious this time is for you, then they're totally useless to you, so cut them off. At this difficult time in your life, you only need people who will listen to you, comfort you, be there for you, support you and give you the shoulder you need to cry on.
Your grief has no time limit, grieve for as long as you need to.
As time goes on, you'll learn to deal with your loss, you will become stronger and even though you'll always miss the person you lost, you'll be able to smile at the good memories that you had of them, in the hope that one day, you'll get the opportunity to meet them again.
This piece is dedicated to my mother Drissia who died 13.12.12. I will always love you mum x