Love Bridging Life and Death (by @mscator)
On January 6, I found out that my dog Kolo has terminal bone cancer. Dr. Young gave her two, maybe three months to live.
We rescued Kolo– “Kolohe” which is Hawaiian for “rascal” –11 years ago and those of you who follow my Twitter timeline know that since early 2009 I have been sharing photos of her and our adventures hiking and enjoying life together in beautiful Asheville, North Carolina. She is my dearest companion and my empathetic, steadfast protector.
An insulin-dependent diabetic with thyroid dysfunction, Kolo went blind in both eyes and underwent cataract surgery in 2012. If you’re interested, my blog, Kolo’s Blindness, provides more photos and a timeline of our remarkable experience together. I have so many photos of her that I have not yet posted, but there are some good ones there to share with you.
Kolo has exceeded her prognosis by over two months. I have been inspired by her strength while struggling with the impending certainty of letting her go. Grief at times shakes me to the core, but at the same time, I have had the gift of these past five months to watch her closely and pamper her. She takes delight in every meal and continues to watch the deer and the wild bunnies from my office window.
My Kolo has been an example of courage and adaptability in coping with her plight. I think she is wiser than me these days as I continue to struggle with and ponder grief and letting go.
In his novel, The Bridge of San Luis Rey, Thornton Wilder wrote, “There is a land of the living and a land of the dead and the bridge is love.” We know that death is a part of life. How do we find the courage to face life’s challenges, adapt and let go with love? And even more, can we transform a major sorrow into something extraordinary? What links suffering, survival, and transcendence? And how do we help each other get there?
Q1 If life is a celebration of passionate colors, what is death?
Q2 How do we continue to truly live, in the face of the impending death of a loved one?
Q3 Coping with loss is a part of life. How do we find the courage to accept loss?
Q4 How do we embrace change when we don’t want to?
Q5 Should grief remain personal or is it better shared?
Q6 We know that we all are going to die. So why do we often behave as if we will live forever?
Q7 What would be the positive (or negative) consequence(s) of living ‘forever’?
Q8 What role does the spirit play in resilience?
Q9 How are we transformed by a deep personal loss? How do we “fully” recover?
Q10 How can a community help someone who is going through a hard time?
“Not till we are lost, in other words, not till we have lost the world, do we begin to find ourselves, and realize where we are and the infinite extent of our relations.” Thoreau
Life is a celebration of passionate colors
What a wonderful post amid heartfelt reflections by Leia! Please join our long-time friend in #SpiritChat, Leia Cator (@mscator) as she steps up to host this very important topic for us ~ Sunday, June 4th at 9amET on twitter. Thank you, Leia! – Kumud @AjmaniK