‘Nature has healing properties,’ I read over and over.
Of course, it does. Nature is everything, it is destruction and it is rebirth often both simultaneously.
Even in the deadest limbs of a tree, life of some sort is happening around, on and within it.
Death fills a lot of gaps in my mind.
The people I’ve lost, the people I know ultimately I will lose one day, if I don’t die first.
I always have to caveat that, because though I’m ‘younger’ and the order we expect is those who are older to die first, I don’t, I can’t buy into that because I know otherwise. I know because I am a 30 something-year-old who was born with a heart defect and that heart defect further damages other organs within the body.
I’m older than my age may suggest, I’m all too aware of the high probability of a low life expectancy.
But in that talk of my lower life expectancy the thing that makes me anxious more than my own death is losing people. The pain of watching people fade away, I don’t think I can face that again.
A part of me hopes that I will die sooner than those people.
A part of me doesn’t hope that and wants to instantly hold on and say, ‘no, no you’re jinxing yourself. You’re going to die a painful death in a car accident!’ ‘No, no, you’re jinxing yourself you’re gonna die from some kind of cancer.’
Sometimes I’m depressed enough to consider quickening the pace of my death, after all it should be easy given my health. I mean after all my heart has been and is currently beating to give me life while killing me off at the same time, a trickle down effect through my organs, scarring them.
Or rather the absence of something in my heart is killing me.
But then there are other times I am filled with an anxious desperation to see something, get that ‘perfect’ photograph of something because, ‘I’m going to die soon enough.’
But that only leads to continuous disappointment, not just in my photographic capabilities but in what is absent when I go out there to do the photography.
It stops me concentrating on whats there and I come away with a cloudy skied mind.
It’s hard to not get a grip on some idea, not become obsessed with it when your brain is wired like mine seems to be. I think anyone and everyone can suffer from this, but autism seems to make it harder to break the cycle.
And so my brain loops through these cycles of anxiety about death, others and my own, to wishing for my own death to becoming desperate to not die, at least not till I have that ‘one amazing photograph I can die happy with.’
I am terrified of my parents dying, terrified of watching them fade, watching them decline. I’ve seen people do that and I sometimes wonder who is it worse for? Them? Surely it’s them? But sometimes I think it’s worse for those watching, those that are caring and then that makes me uncomfortable too because I am that person too. That person who needs care, who was born to fade.
Death looks like the end on a cloudy day
But it can look like nutrients and rebirth in the sunrays of spring.