I Think Therefore I Am, But I Am Not Forever.

“Holy Sonnet X” – John Donne

Death be not proud, though some have called thee
Mighty and dreadful, for, thou art not so,
For, those, whom thou think’st, thou dost overthrow,
Die not, poore death, nor yet canst thou kill me.
From rest and sleepe, which but thy pictures bee,
Much pleasure, then from thee, much more must flow,

And soonest our best men with thee doe goe,
Rest of their bones, and souls deliverie.
Thou art slave to Fate, Chance, kings, and
desperate men,

And dost with poyson, warre, and sicknesse dwell,
And poppie, or charmes can make us sleepe as well,
And better then thy stroake; why swell’st thou then;
One short sleepe past, wee wake eternally, And death shall be no more; Death, thou shalt die.
—————————————————————
Death, ironically, the only surety in life.

Many fear it because we don’t know what awaits us on the other side – or if there even is an “other side” for that matter. Yes there are many with conflicting views; some say there is a Heaven and a Hell and you’ll be judged for your earthly actions and sent to either. Others believe that your soul will be recycled and sent back to Earth for a new life etc. etc.

I have recently come to a realisation – I am not okay with my own mortality. It’s all very well and good to be bold and say that one does not fear death, but I think that deep down, everyone is at least a little bit afraid, even if they won’t admit to it.

I fear the day that my loved ones will be taken from me. I lost my Aunt last year (2014) and it is still unbelievable to me. I often think of her in the present tense and then realisation, like a swift punch to the stomach, brings me back to reality. My grandfather passed away when I was 7 years old and to this day, I cannot think of him without getting emotional. Clearly I do not deal well with loss (a topic for another day).

I fear the day that I am taken from this world. I often wonder to myself “When I die, I wonder if people will miss me”. By the time I shuffle off this mortal coil, I want to know that I made some sort of mark on the world and in people’s lives – but how can I know?

Perhaps the scariest part of death is that it doesn’t keep a calendar. The uncertainty of when it will strike is what scares me to no end. Death comes like a thief in the night and robs us of our most precious possessions.

A quote by James Baldwin illustrates my point more eloquently:

Life is tragic simply because the earth turns and the sun inexorably rises and sets, and one day, for each of us, the sun will go down for the last, last time.

This is all terribly morbid, isn’t it? But there is a reason I started this piece out with John Donne’s “Holy Sonnet X” aka “Death Be Not Proud”. We do not have the answers when it comes to death – nor do I think we will ever, but perhaps if we are able to change the way we think of it, it loses its power over us.

We can conquer death, maybe not in a literal sense, but in a more abstract one. If we remove the notion of “finality” from death, then it becomes another part of life.

I believe that we are not our physical bodies, but that once this vessel ceases to function, that our souls will continue on in our journey. I believe in a thereafter; that one day we will be reunited with the ones we love in a place called Paradise. So I echo the words of John Donne and say death be not proud because “One short sleepe past, wee wake eternally, And death shall be no more; Death, thou shalt die.

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Man Flu No More!

This post is more for all my brethren in the house (holla!), for we have all had to battle the demon known as “man flu”. Yes ladies, this is a real thing and it is not to be taken lightly. Luckily for all you guys, I have compiled a list of my top tips that you can use to deal and ultimately beat the man flu.

So without any further ado, here are my top 10 tips to beating the man flu:

1. Move back in with your parents.
Be warned my brothers, the man flu will attack your body violently and relentlessly. During this time, it is advisable that you move back home and make your parents wait on you, hand and foot. It’s okay, they won’t mind because they’re old and have nothing better to do with their lives.

2. Demand foot rubs.
As a man, you are awarded certain powers by society. One of these powers allows you to beckon any woman to come hither and massage your feet. It’s a little known fact, but women love to serve men, especially when we demand it. Make sure they work on those corns and bunions.

3. Feel free to cry.
When you’re so close to death, you’re allowed to shed some tears. Just make sure that you do so in the manliest way possible. When dealing with the man flu, it is acceptable to cry anywhere from two to four hours straight.

4. Demand cuddles.
This is a little-known fact but, hugs have healing powers. Get as many cuddles as possible, but only from women because they’re not capable of getting man flu as they only suffer from mild strains of the common cold.

5. Educate women about the man flu.
It’s a well-known fact that women look down upon men when we’re sick because they’re heartless creatures who know not of our suffering. Seriously, what do they know about pain? All women have to deal with is menstruation and childbirth. Therefore, it is up to us to educate them about the perils of contracting this disease. They will appreciate your teachings and will be eager to serve you.

6. Avoid work/school at all costs.
When suffering from the man flu, you will suffer from debilitating pain. I warn you, do not even attempt to leave your bed because you might drop dead on the spot. Seriously, if you even think about work, you may very well have a stroke. It’s just not worth it.

7. Video games are your friends.
I know, I know! This isn’t something we enjoy doing at all, but playing video games can help you forget that fact that you are dying a slow and painful death. Trust me on this guys, even though playing on the old PlayStation 3 is pain in the ass, you need to do it for your greater good.

8. Call a priest.
Man flu can best be described as being akin to demon possession. If you are suffering from this disease, call up your local priest and ask him to perform an exorcism on you. If you begin to projectile vomit, speak in tongues and have Lucifer communicate through you, you can be sure that you have the man flu. Exorcism is your only hope.

9. Lament the world.
When you’re sick, everything in the world is awful. Pretty little butterflies, cute little puppies and adorable babies can all suck it. It’s only when you’re sick that you realise how much everything blows and you should voice your dissatisfaction with the world. It’s your right and you should exercise it.

10. Get spiritual
How’s your relationship with God? Is it good? Could it be better? Well, if you think you need to get closer to God then you’d better get on it. Chances are that if you contract the man flu, you’re going to be meeting him soon anyway, so you might as well get yourself right with him.

So there it is, my Top 10 tips on dealing with the man flu. Hopefully it can help you someday… or not. I don’t really care either way.

Oh No, I’m Fine.

Hello, my dear readers. I hope this post finds you all in good health because I most certainly am not. Yes, I sit here typing this as I take my last few breaths as my time on God’s green Earth draws to an end. You see, ladies and gentlemen, I have the flu.

What?! Don’t look at me like that; it’s actually a lot worse than it sounds. For example, the picture accompanying this post is not a drawing, it is in fact a picture taken of me this afternoon. Seriously, I turn into a little blonde white girl holding a cat when I’m sick. True story.

It’s said that at least 2 out of every 3 sufferers of the flu die within the first 24 hours of contracting this disease and uh, this is totally not a made-up statistic. You don’t need to Google this because I’m totally trustworthy! *puts both thumbs up and gives cheesy smile*

In all seriousness though, having the influenza isn’t all that fun. My body feels like it’s met the business-end of a baseball bat, I have a fever which makes me feel like I’m in the Sahara desert one moment and the frozen planes of the tundra the next, my nose can’t decide whether it enjoys being blocked or runny more but is having a grand old time switching between the two and to top it all off, my head is killing me. (Not literally, although I wish it was literal at this point.)

It’s been a long, tough road (over the course of today, at least) and despite my suffering with this fatal disease, I have been a real soldier and handled it like a mature adult. To prove how totally equipped I am to handle whatever life throws at me, here are some quotes from me, from my time alone:

•I’m going to die today.
•Why do you hate me, Jesus?!
•*sings Opera to self* Oh Lord, this fever is making me lose my mind.
•*sees sun coming out* GO AWAY, SUN! LEAVE ME TO DIE IN PEACE!!! *sniffles* *falls face-first into pillow* *weeps violently*

Uh, yeah… like a mature adult.

Anyway, despite the fact that I am now physically handicapped, I will face the world with vigour and optimism… starting tomorrow because right now I need to just curl up into a ball and die. Second on my list is to just sit here, looking into the darkness, wondering why bad things happen to good people.

In closing: If I am to meet my untimely demise due to my illness, I want you all to remember me as a lively, bubbly guy who always made people laugh and a guy who had a great, great butt. Seriously, it’s ridiculous how magnificent this thing is. I mean it, someone had better mention this fact in my eulogy because damn.