Reading about death can be heart wrenching, uplifting, sad, and inspiring all at the same time. When we read what others have to say about the experience we can’t help but contemplate our own mortality an the legacy we will leave behind.
In a recent article published on the website Vox, author Sarah Kliff shares five essays about death and dying.
This has made a recent swath of beautiful essays a surprise. In different publications over the past few weeks, I’ve stumbled upon writers who were contemplating final days. These are, no doubt, hard stories to read. I had to take breaks as I read about Paul Kalanithi’s experience facing metastatic lung cancer while parenting a toddler, and was devastated as I followed Liz Lopatto’s contemplations on how to give her ailing cat the best death possible. But I also learned so much from reading these essays, too, about what it means to have a good death versus a difficult end from those forced to grapple with the issue. These are four stories that have stood out to me recently, alongside one essay from a few years ago that sticks with me today.
Read the full story: 5 moving, beautiful essays about death and dying
The essays Kliff has included range from the recent publication by the noted neurology professor, Oliver Sacks, to Elizabeth Lopatto’s story about the illness of her beloved cat. Each essay offers a unique perspective and is well worth reading.
- My Own Life | Oliver Sacks
- Before I go | Paul Kalanithi
- As I lay dying | Laurie Becklund
- Everything I know about a good death I learned from my cat | Liz Lopatto
- Letting Go | Atul Gawande