Sunday, March 3, 2013

Giving Birth to Death

I wrote this piece a few days ago and wasn't planning on posting it until a later date.  But, due to the death of my 19 year old cousin yesterday, in a motorcycle accident, I thought it was more appropriate to talk about death.  Death is here, she is making herself known to me and my family this year, more than in the years before and in a different way.  She does not warn us with illness or old age as she did before, but takes our young suddenly, and without notice 

Today, I will listen to her, and let her be heard.  I will try to understand what she is here to teach us and tell me, no matter how difficult that maybe. 

I did not write this piece for my cousin, but may you rest in peace Brian.  Another young soul taken too soon.

Giving Birth to Death
Most people give birth to life, to a new beginning.  I gave birth to death, to an end.  My daughter was stillborn, living her whole life cycle of birth and death inside of me, never seeing the world beyond the womb.  My womb was no longer a place of birth, of life, of being, but became a place of demise, of darkness, of Death.

Death no longer lives inside as she did with my daughter.  I have given birth not to life, but to her, Death.  Death is my child now.  Death is my daily companion.  Death, she walks beside me, is connected to me, like a shadow in the afternoon sun, stretching long and tall from the tiny base of my foot.  She, like a shadow, changes form; sometimes she is large and apparent, like on a sunny day.  While, other times she hides in the dark, not being able to be seen, but sitting there, lying in wait for those who she might welcome soon into her dark abyss.

I am not afraid of her, of Death.  At times she walks beside me as a friend, reminding me that my time here is not to be taken for granted.  That my life is short, and ultimately she is the only guarantee in this world.  She is my only certainty.  My last friend in life, reliable and consistent, until the end.  Death keeps her promises.  Death keeps her word.   

At other times she is a foe. I do not welcome her into my home eagerly, even though she sits next to me in my chair or at the dining table.  She is not a welcomed guest, but more like an unwanted visitor of the authorities, that you must entertain to do you duty, to be polite, to not get caught.  I humor her, I am honest with her, but I do not welcome her with open arms, for her day is not yet for me.  I am guarded and cautious around her.  She has already taken so much from me. 

I know that she comes and goes as she chooses.  I know that she will violate you and take advantage of you, like a rapist without empathy or concern.  This is how she most recently found me.  She raped me with infection and entered my being, not to take my life, but that of my child, where she took my daughter’s place in this world and I gave birth to her instead.  I gave birth to Death.  And Death is my child now. 

And one day Death will bury me, as my child was supposed to.  Death will sleep in between me and my husband at night. Death will follow me around the house as I do chores.  Death will ride in the car in my future, as I drive my teenage child to basketball practice.  Death will dance at my nieces wedding. Death will happily blow out my birthday candles for me, year, after year, with a smile on her face.  Until finally, Death will one day, when I am old and gray, hopefully, gingerly and not forcefully, she will kiss my lips and gently take me with her into the dark abyss. 

And she will say, “do not be scared my mother.  For I have walked with you all this way not as your friend, but as your daughter.  I did not take your child on that day to punish you.  It was just her time, and now is yours.  When you gave birth to me, instead of her on that day, you were giving birth to a reminder, me.  I was born to remind you of the fragility of your existence”. 

“You were lucky until then; we had only known each other in passing.  We had only seen each other as I walked with your extended loved ones, your Aunt and Grandfather those many years before.  But, when I was born to you, I was not just reminding you of the darkness in the world, but the greatness of its beauty and love.  I was a reminder that time is short, and love is what’s important”. 

“And as you lay here in my arms mother, I take you into the abyss, knowing that you have lived your life to the fullest. You have learned to embrace the time you have had in this life. You have filled your heart with as much love and opened yourself to the possibilities of this world because I was always by your side, as a reminder of how precious this life is.  If it was not for my daily presence, you would not be as rich with love as you have been.  You would not have known the true meaning of love or how to appreciate each moment, because I mother am only born to those who are ready to experience love in its grandest form.  A love that is balanced with loss.  There is no loss without love”.      

That is when I will take her, my child, Death, into my arms.  She will no longer walk beside me.  I will be ready, and she will once again enter my being.  We will be one again.  This time, she will not come for my child, but for me. And this time, I will be at peace. 


  1. I need to buy stock in kleenex. Your writing is so inspirational and you are so much stronger than I every was or ever will be. I love you Lindsey.

  2. Zoe, You sound so very much like your Grandfather! Has Madame Death connected you to him in some way? Your writing is exceptionally powerful!
    I'am so very Proud!!!

    Love Forever,

  3. Oh my goodness, this is incredible. Crying. Thank you for this. The greatest gift from one babyloss mother to another.


Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.

Design by Small Bird Studios | All Rights Reserved