Coming to terms with dying

I put up a post yesterday. I started with a topic in mind then with my typical rambling style went off on a tangent in a totally different direction. It is true there is so much happening in the world that is beyond my ability to grasp even in the slightest way.
Where I was going with the post is I have come to the realization, I am totally confusing myself. That being my reaction to the new symptoms I have been experiencing over the past 1 1/2 years or so. It took meditation and a lot of soul searching to come to this realization. When I can see and understand something I am able to deal with it much more easily.
For years now I have been, I suppose you could say “living on the edge of death”. By that I simply mean my reality is, I don’t know if I will be here even this afternoon. When I go to sleep at night, I don’t know if I will wake up in the morning. Now it is true that in fact that does apply to each and everyone of us. While that is reality for everyone, most live in denial. Any such thoughts are surreal about an event that will happen years down the line. Definitely no time soon.
You hear the words, you are dying, come out of your doctor’s mouth and there is an immediate big change. The surreal suddenly becomes very real. It took me time to reach a level Of acceptance. With that acceptance came a level of internal peace. I can’t say I have ever reached the point of being totally OK with the idea and don’t imagine I ever will. I did though reach the point of acceptance that OK, this sucks. There is nothing I can do about it so let’s make the best of each day.
I have been amazingly blessed to have survived 5 heart attacks. It has been made clear because of the condition of my heart #6 is looming on the horizon. When that one hits, down I will go and will not be getting up. Should likely be quick bang and it is over with. That is what I have been expecting, that is what I had come to terms with in my mind. Relative little discomfort followed with a quick end. I suppose it could be said I was accepting under my terms and conditions being the relative little discomfort followed by the quick end.
About 2 years ago that all changed with the onset of the AFlutter and AFib. With that the relative little discomfort levels suddenly ramped up considerably from what it had been. I admit I struggle with this not only physically but mentally. This was beyond the terms of my acceptance level. Things are not going according to my plan of how it should all go.
I have written of my episodes. According to my plan none of this should be happening . Especially as this is a whole new heart issue, has nothing to do with the heart failure or that looming heart attack. It is just a new and uncomfortable condition.
Slowly I am learning to deal with. But, It has slowly came to me. Things in life don’t always go according to my plan. There is a much bigger picture to consider, things happen according to God’s plan. I sure wish He would whisper in my ear what that plan is. One day I will find out.
I have prayed many times, placing myself in God’s hands, asking that His will be done in my life. I pray that God’s will be done in my life and this happens. Obviously His plan and my plan are not in sync. I do know God is actively at work in my life. Knowing this some how makes it easier to come to terms with all that is happening.

6 Responses to Coming to terms with dying

  1. April West says:


    Hello April and welcome to the blog. Really enjoy our games on words with friends, even if you constantly kick my butt

  2. Noel says:

    Excellent post. Most of all live in denial like you say… But it is wise to learn to be in peace with the inevitable . Thanks again for all of your inspiring thoughts .

    Thank you Noel, both for the kind words and for your ongoing support

  3. M T McGuire says:

    Ah Bill, all of that is so true. The bit about the difference between what you plan, or at least expect, and what God plans or what is actually happening, really rang a bell with me too. We are all amazing, and sometimes with a change to our what is, we can be incredible. I am glad you are feeling more at peace because lord knows it must be tough dealing with pain.

    Wishing you well.

    God bless.


    Thank you my dear friend. Accepting that the only guaranteed constant in life is that nothing is constant, everything changes in time. Just have to have faith, accept and deal with change as it comes.
    Hope all is well with you.

  4. lypenner says:

    Bill you are so right that we sure don’t always understand God’s ways, or that bigger picture you wrote about. Sometimes when I’m battling yet another headache, I jokingly ask my husband, where’s my operating manual? I don’t know how to be or what to do or what meds to take or sometimes how to get through the tough moments. So many people are in difficult circumstances, and much more difficult than mine. I like how you put it, that you thought you knew the terms and conditions and then they changed on you. The AA people say, “God help me accept the things I cannot change…” and that’s sometimes a tough place to get to.

    One thing I’m learning is that even when I thought I had a better idea for my life, God is trustable and is still present in our circumstances whatever they may be. There’s a verse in the Psalms (118:5) that says that we cry out to God from our tight places, and God hears us and sets us in a spacious place. I love that verse. When we are connected to God and the people who love us, at least we’re not alone in the difficult places, and that makes all the difference. Ok I’ll get off my soapbox now 🙂

    One of my heroes, Bishop Desmond Tutu (leader against apartheid in South Africa) says, “I want what God wants, that is why I am so happy.”

    May your day feel spacious today, even in some small way. Thanks for writing your thoughts, I loved this post.

    Hi Lydia, so very nice to hear from you. I am so sorry to hear you are having those headaches again. I know how debilitating they can be.if Lyle finds that operating manual, please left me know, I could sure use a look at one. Lol.
    I know and accept God is in charge of the “master plan” for my life which is just how I want it to be. Having even an inkling of what that plan might be would often be nice and comforting, but that is where our faith comes into play. I have to believe a part of that master plan is to give us the best opportunity, the most opportunists to grow to become the very best people we can be.
    If our “highway of life” was a perfectly smooth and straight road we would just cruise down it at full speed. Perfectly content with the status quo, not learning, developing or growing as people. I believe God, is ahead of me on that highway. He creates little bumps in the road as a opportunity for me to grow as I deal with the issue. I must be due for a smooth section of highway coming up soon

  5. lypenner says:

    Yes, I think I’m due for a smooth section coming up soon too lol. I guess we all feel that way with our “lots in life”. Mine doesn’t seem bad compared to what others have to deal with, but I still feel kind of gutted out by this persistent problem. I don’t feel like I exercise much faith to tell the truth, but it is still my hope. I believe that God takes these crooked and bumpy roads and fashions them into something beautiful for a greater purpose, but today I just feel like I don’t know how to cope with the bumps. And yet, it doesn’t escape my notice how God sends mercies along our path, like compassion from others, or a good word, or remembering all the provisions in place to give us meaning amid the struggle, or even just the simple things like physical provisions. I’m grateful for the compassion on this blog. I ask for your prayers today Bill.

    Prayers of healing, peace and contentment out to you.

    • lypenner says:

      Thank you Bill. It was a gift yesterday, your prayer and knowing you read my whiney cry for help 🙂 I had also written to a dear friend who is a mentor to me, and got some insight into what might be happening emotionally, beyond the physical, to contribute to the headaches which have been worse lately. She gave me good insight into some anger I’ve been holding onto regarding a situation with another friend, so that was kind of a turning point yesterday. I think I was a bit blind to that. My anger might be justified, but it’s never good to hang on to it. So much to learn and release to God on this path! No wonder we’re invited to pray, “forgive us our debts as we forgive our debtors.” Hope it’s ok to share all this! Happy Canada Day to you and Vi.

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