The Circle of Life: Birth and Death’s Profound Similarities

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6 months ago

I was thinking about birth and death at three o’clock this morning. I know most people are asleep at that hour—hopefully.     

I was thinking how similar they are and that they create a circle. A circle of life.

We go through labor to get into this world. It can be easy and gentle or it can be a hard, wild ride. So it is with our labor to leave this world. Some of us go easier than others. For some it is gentle, for others it is very, very hard.

After we get to this world we take deep breaths and settle in to get adjusted. As we leave, our breathing gets slower and slower. We are relinquishing our need for breathing just as we gasped for air as we entered.

We are given water first, then milk, then soft foods, then gradually regular foods, eventually we eat whatever we want. As we are leaving, we first stop eating meat, then fruits and vegetables, then soft food, then milk in the form of protein supplements and finally, we just have water.

Are you seeing the circle?

We start off alone, then we have Mom and Dad, then family, friends, then the world of school, activities, and involvement in the bigger world around us. When we are leaving, we first become less interested in world events, favorite activities, then we withdraw from social activities, then from friends, and gradually family and loved ones as we go deeper and deeper into ourselves. 

An infant sleeps most of the time (hopefully), then transitions to morning and afternoon naps, then to just afternoon naps, to being awake during the day and asleep at night. As we are leaving this world – either in the span of months if we have a disease, or years in the case of old age – we begin to take afternoon naps, then morning and afternoon naps, then one day we don’t get out of bed, then we are asleep more than we are awake. We generally die non-responsive, asleep.

Our bodies are programmed to live and our bodies are programmed to die. We are born, we experience, and then we die. Some of us die sooner than others, but we will all die. It is the circle of life.

Something More… about The Circle of Life: Birth and Death’s Profound Similarities

I go into the similarities of the birthing and dying processes in my book, The Final Act of Living. You can get your copy here.  In the book, which reads like a novel, I share stories and experiences. You will see that death doesn’t just happen, that there is an unfolding; there is a process to dying. 

Read More 

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Nicole
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