Thursday, October 24, 2019

Living A Full Life

 Philosophical question for the masses... what is the definition of living a full life? This subject came up recently at work while discussing life expectancy. It was mentioned a family member of mine is over 100 years old and I mentioned I have no desire to reach that age. I, personally would like to leave this life before I get anywhere close to that milestone. The person I was talking to was shocked and depressed to hear me say that and told me I should aim to stay around as long as possible in order to live a full life.

The statement got me thinking about what that means. When someone passes away before the age of fifty, depending on there person perhaps even older, people usually remark they "were gone too soon" or "taken before their time". When someone reaches later 70s or older it can often be heard that the person lived a full life. But what makes this the case? Does simply existing on the planet for decades mean your life was full? Can you really be said to have lived if all you did was exist?

What about someone who leaves this world in their 40s but has travelled, loved, shared experiences beyond imagination, and enjoyed every day they were here? Were they taken too soon or did they simply experience what life had to offer? I like to believe what you do means far more than how long you are here.

My grandmother is 101 years old. People upon hearing that will tell me what a miracle that is and how grateful I should be to have had so much time with her. These people know nothing about her and don't realize she has daily care, is obsessed with watching / listening to a single television channel so she gets nothing but a biased view of the world, and though she has travelled some years ago she has done very little most of the time I have been alive. She also relies heavily on my mom along with her daily healthcare providers but she has next to no relationship with anyone else in the family. Yet even with this limited interaction and narrow world view people will still insist she "saw so much" and "lived a full life".

I am seriously considering debating exploring this and looking at the different perspectives in an upcoming book. There have been books that cover death at different ages but I already have a working idea about people of various ages and the different perspectives of how to truly live.