In 1919, when my grandmother went into labor with her first child, the doctor put down his bag and asked her to remove her panties. Horrified, she crossed her legs, pulled up her night shirt, and pointed to her protruding naval. “What do you want with my panties? The baby is coming out here,” she said.
100 years ago, we knew more about how to lay out our loved ones than we knew about giving birth. Now we’ve got it the other way around.
Death is one of those things, perhaps the only one, we will all do and only once. It is final, and solitary, and something we don’t talk about.
Heartspace: Real Life Stories on Death and Dying tackles this problem head-on with honest and true tales of death as told by the survivors. It is a quilt woven from many perspectives. Here is the mother and daughter at vigil in a hand-built cabin, here the father — ninety and counting — in denial, and here the tragic death of a first-born son.
I was a death virgin when death came to my neighborhood. Many of us were, and we were blindsided. We helped each through the process and eventually came to terms with death. My story, along with many others, are in this book.
If you think you might die one day, or know anyone who plans on dying, this book is for you. We owe it to ourselves to get comfortable with the inevitable. Let Heartspace show you the way.