Dying For Sex

“You needn’t die happy when your time comes, but you must die satisfied, for you have lived your life from the beginning to the end.”-Stephen King

Recently I binged on a six episode podcast in a span of 24 hours.  It was beautiful, poignant, and emotional, and I had to share this.  The series is called Dying for Sex.  It’s a conversation between two best friends, where one particular friend has stage 4 cancer, divorces her husband, and explores her sexuality with the time she has left.  It contains such beauty, humor, rawness, vulnerability, and inspiration.  It serves as reminder for one to think of how do you want to live your life, knowing that you will die. 

       How often do we forget that we are going to die?  That is the only certainty we have.  I’m not trying to be morbid or focus solely on the negative here, but it is true.  Yet, when we know this and can hold this in our hands, it reminds us of the preciousness of our lives.

       This is a foundational principle in Buddhism.  In fact in Bhutan, people remind themselves five times a day they are going to die to bring about their happiness.  If you have problems doing this, you can buy an app called “We Croak,” which will remind you.  I purchased this years ago, and try to remind myself how precious life is frequently.  

       When you know death is imminent, you cut out the crap, and live a life aligned to what is most important to you.  But the truth is none of us know when our time is.  What are we waiting for?  What do you need to do to live in alignment with your values?  What is on your bucket list? 

More info on the podcast : https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/dying-for-sex/id1495392900

It’s Like

Yesterday, I lost my English Bulldog companion of 15 years.  And it’s been more difficult than I expected.  As I was reading this book on the Dark Night of the Soul by Thomas Moore, it said you should try to describe your intense emotions in metaphors versus literally.   And this is what I have come up with so far…
                                It’s like…
It’s like the dizziness you feel from spinning in circles.
It’s like finding your first gray hair.
It’s like living in a country where you don’t understand the language.
It’s like a first break up.
It’s like breaking a bone, which you feel will never heal.
It’s like learning to use crutches.
It’s like visiting your childhood home.
It’s like a late January day in England, where the sunsets are at 3 :30 pm.
It’s like letting the world see you without makeup.
It’s like struggling to get onto another flight after yours was cancelled.
It’s like getting lost and not having cell service or a GPS.
It’s like driving on an empty tank, wondering if you will make it to the next gas station.
It’s like endless vomiting after a night out drinking.
It’s like a 100 degree day without air conditioning.
It’s like a yeast infection.
It’s like losing your appetite because you lost your sense of taste.
It’s like 24 hours of no sleep. 
It’s like standing on a crowded train at rush hour for a long commute. 
It’s like knowing you will never hear your favorite song again.
Metaphors can’t convey the pain, loneliness, and distance I feel from myself losing him.
 
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Farewell to my Puzo


Today I had to say goodbye to one of my closest companions for the past 15 years.  This has been one of the hardest moments, and I knew he waited for me until I came back from my trip.  I had minimal sleep last night, crying as I looked at him, as he looked at me, his head rested on my hand, and we both knew our remaining time is limited.  I played my Puzo playlist day and night, which consisted of his favorite classical, jazz, and kirtan songs (his favorite song is by Paz – Om Ganapataye, which I played in the vet office as he died).  

I’ve had so many memories with this being who came into my life when I was 28, and has now left when I was 43.  We had 15 years and 1 month together.   Over the years, he’s travelled to more places than some humans.  He was a gift from my mother from Amish country in Ohio to NYC (with sidetrips to Connecticut, Vermont, Philly), and two moves to California, Hawaii, and we lived in three residences in the United Kingdom (he even visited Scotland), and finally Paris France.  I know he has now transitioned to a place where he will have further adventures and watch over me from above. 


 It was through walking him and his sister Bella, that I began to talk to strangers in these unfamiliar cities or to explore parks in places I would never have frequented.  He opened my heart in ways I didn’t know it was possible.  We named him Puzo, as Anthony’s favorite author was Mario Puzo (author of the Godfather), but puso in Tagalog (the Filipino language) means heart.  He definitely lived into the name of Gangsta Mafia and Fullness of Heart.  I love you Puzo, and I’ve appreciated every joyful, crazy, hilarious, difficult, touching moment with you over the years.  We will miss you and I know you will be watching over us and protecting us in this next phase.