December 31, 2012

The Art of Living Learned Through Dying. ~ Jill Zekanis

Death, the D word. There, I said it.

This is a word that people fear. It is also a fact of life that many people deny. It is ok, denial is a coping mechanism.

I think that death is feared because people tend to think in a linear fashion. So death means the end. In this world and all worlds, I think life is circular, cyclical.

Death is just a part of it all, part of the circle.

Death has many things to teach us and learning these things is an art. It is the art of living.

When I see people everyday, in my work, this is my message. It is anxiety producing to think about the unknown and though death is a given, it is mysterious. So, I go with trying to see what goals people have. What to they want to do?

Death is about living a good life. and to me, a good life means learning how to die everyday and even in every moment.

To let go of all the known. Like letting go of ways of existing/being. Letting go of residence, letting go of work, letting go of ideas and perceptions, letting go of things or people that no longer heal. It can also accompany getting married, having a baby, any sort of change.

It is not an easy process. It can be uncomfortable knowing that everything changes. But, it can be a comfort to know that there is something next. And, there is always something next. There is no vacuum.

It is an art to be gentle while going through the letting go.

It is an art to be aware through the letting go. To be truely aware. To see and feel it in the body as well as the mind. It is an art to be able to express what is being felt and it takes courage, because many people do not want to hear about it or talk about it. Like I said, denial is a coping mechanism. It only goes so far though, because the experience does not just go away on its own.

It is what it is.

It takes practice to die.

The more one practices, the less fear that is experienced. It becomes easier to let go because one develops a knowing that there will be something next.

And so today I die to another year and welcome another year of living.


Jill Zekanis is a mother, a RN, and a massage therapist. She has studied geography, with an economic and cultural focus, nursing, massage therapy, aromatherapy, flower essences, accupressure, yoga, dance, meditation,the use of herbs and natural remedies as well as reiki and energy/vibrational medicine using sound, stones,intention and compassionate touch. She uses all of her skills in her healing work as a hospice nurse and in her daily interactions with others. She provides education and resources in the community to empower people to create their own goals and plans for healing while continuing to explore the ideas of what healing means and how it can be used.


Editor: Edith Lazenby

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