Swimming Lessons

I've always thought that I didn't want to linger. I wanted to just wink out, squeezed between the wetted cosmic thumb and forefinger like a guttering candle. I wanted to close my eyes and not wake up here again. To be, then not to be - that was the proposition. I didn't care much about the body at that point; always figured I'd just be cremated and strewn somewhere, but I've been wondering of late if the soul doesn't need a bit of time to pack its shaving kit, and get its affairs in order for the trip. I imagine it takes time to disengage, to let the pains of the physical world fall away - some of us are very attached to our pain. Some of us are our pain.

At some point, though, I figure you must feel ready to take the plunge; you become acclimated to death as it were, and slipping into the river of souls is welcome, like a warm bath after a life long day of shoveling snow. Even though most have an entire adulthood to get ready for it, few of us ever really do much preparing - no spiritual swimming lessons, so to speak - so I figure there is fear, and denial, and doubt - and then acceptance. By then you're just hanging onto the edge, already up to your neck in it, and that kind of swimming comes back to you. You let go, push off, and swim away from this life and the body you used up living it, and find your way home. The pain of this life recedes, and the snow is all shovelled.


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