Category Archives: personal

A rambling note that I hope is somewhat coherent

As many of you know, my mother passed away on Friday, February 17, 2012 at 4:10pm. This hasn’t been an easy experience for any of us, including myself. For those who are unaware, my mother died from a glioblastoma brain tumor. She fought it for twenty-three months, almost 8 times as long as her initial prognosis. For that, I am thankful to the surgeons who initially saved her life, to the doctors who subsequently extended it, and to those who made her finals days as comfortable as possible.

To my readers, I’m sorry I haven’t posted much in the past month or so, I just haven’t been motivated to do so. Give me a little time, I ask, and I’ll get back into it.

That being said, grieving is probably one of the most difficult times for me. Partly because coming to the realization that the person I loved is forever gone. Partly also because I’ve have to withstand a barrage of people telling me that my mother is in a better place, with God now, is enjoying peace with other deceased family members. I even had one person tell me that my mom was flying about, literally flying about in the clouds. I’ve don’t my best not to get angry with this, as such sentiments may be comforting to the person expressing them.

I was in the room and watched on as my mother passed. I would be lying if I said at this moment I did not understand the comforting value of religious belief and ritual. I was brought up in the catholic faith, and at this moment I felt the urge that some sort of ritual should be performed. I knew though, that such an act would only be comforting to me in the moment, and wouldn’t really have any bearing on what was left of my mother. My rational mind held my irrational thoughts in check. This should not be taken as evidence for some kind of divine, but just for what it is, my own experience.

There is comfort to be had, though. My mothers death marked the end of several months of being in what was essentially palliative and hospice type care. My family can finally bring closure to this ordeal. While my mother will be missed, and that’s an understatement, it is comforting to know that her suffering has ended.

I still have trouble seeing all of the old pictures of my mother, before her brain was invaded by rogue cells. And it is difficult to think about how my younger siblings and step father are coping. It will take some time to grieve through this, but life does go on, and my mother would have wanted us to continue to grow. I know she would be proud of what I’m doing with my life, and would continue to urge me to do that which makes me happy. There is so much more I want to say, and much that I work to not forget. In the mean time, I will take this time to be with my family, support them as they support me, and try to make the best of life.

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I don’t need God to be happy on this day

Today was Christmas, and while my mother is on her deathbed, I still managed to find happiness. I found happiness in being with my family. I found joy watching my younger siblings open up their Christmas day gifts. My heart warmed as my step-dad opened his presents, gifts which he didn’t know my brother, sister and I got for him. Today was about spending time with my family, and it w with them that I was happy. People came and visited us today, and the love from family and friends sustains us. I don’t need god to be happy, I do just fine with what I have here and now.

I think this song from Tim Minchin describes perfectly how I feel about Christmas:


My argument from personal revelation

Personal revelation is one of the main reasons many modern evangelical Christians believe in their god. They claim to have personal experience with the divine. Usually I will argue against this utilizing knowledge from psychology regarding the fallibility of the human mind. This unfortunately has little effect, as it is often more persuasive to argue from emotional appeals than intellectual ones. This is my emotional appeal, this is my argument from personal revelation. This is why, aside from all the philosophies and sciences, I know that there is no personal, loving god who gives a damn about my family and I.
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