Thinking You Could Die is Scary. Knowing You are Going to Die is Not.

Many scary moments in a thriller center around death.  But the scariest scenes actually are about the possibility of death.  Knowing you are going to die, I have discovered, is not at all scary.  Sad and disappointing, yes…Scary, no.

There really are just three ways you can die.  

First is the lightning strike.  No time to be scared, just boom and you’re dead.  

Second is the scary one where you realize that death is a possibility.  Your car brakes fail coming down the mountain or the big wave pulls you out to sea…or, worst of all, there’s a maniac with a chainsaw.  Those moments when you are in peril and truly do not know if you will live or die are terrifying.

Third is my scenario. You know you are going to die and, in fact, have been given a schedule.  In my case it was eight to twelve months.  

I have come to believe that this is actually the best of the three.  

Unlike the lightning strike, I have time to reflect and to get my affairs in order.  I also have been put on warning to savior the little things and try to be a better person. 

And unlike the second scenario involving a giant wave or chainsaw, I am spared the suspense of wondering if my time has come.  I know my time has come.

You could argue that this is a gift.  That I - and other terminally ill people - have been given the answer to one of life’s most pressing questions: How long will I live?   

I can see the future.


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