As soon as my children were old enough to take care of themselves, my fear of death began to fade. I now have absoluetly no fear about the end of this life. I may still make mistakes, but none of my decisions is based on fear. When anyone tries to control me with this fear, I laugh and tell them "we all die, that's part of the deal of life"
Of course, is certainly helps that I am a complete believer in life everlasting before and after this Earth. I don't know what it is, but I figure since it happens/has happened to everyone it must be OK. I look forward to what's next.
Catherine, your question is a good one, one almost everyone asks sooner or later. Here is what I think.
We each can control only our own actions and thoughts. We can never truely control anyone else. People have tried throughout human history - torture, violence, war, slavery. Still the souls are free in the end.
When I can accept that I am powerless over any other, but very powerful within myself, I can start to let go of the urge to control things. Then I can trust that if I do right, right results wil follow. It does not matter what others do or don't do. I cannot control them, but I can control myself. I can decide that faith allows me to do right without regard for the outcome, because the outcome will be right - even if it's in a way my current state of mind can't understand.
I know this is hard. Very hard. It helps me to remember that in this world and this reality we are all condemned to certain death. You may think that sounds grim, but in fact it brings real freedom. If I am free to die without fear, then I am free to live without fear, and my wounds can heal.
At the moment I read this I was feeling so sad about relationships. So sad to have feelings that others are not what you want them to be or do not give what you think you are needing.
So sad to think you are not strong enough to feel no need for the love of others or not strong enough to release all these feelings and float free like a feather.
If we travel the birth canal alone and the death river alone, does this mean we are to be alone between birth and death, death and birth - or the opposite? What does it mean when the memory of one person is stronger than the presence of another? Can I be alone if I have memories in my mind which bring feelings?
So often I see people who have developed this way of interacting with others - they spend the whole time the other person is speaking thinking of what they want to say next. They make the same statements and arguments over and over. The only voice they want to hear is their own. The only thoughts and feelings they want to hear are their own.
In this way they become empty. Any real thoughts they may have had calcify as they are parroted over and over. Any real feelings they had become a habit they cannot escape from. They have created a prison for their own mind and their own heart to protect them from other people's ideas and other people's feelings.
No one is too old to learn to listen and see as this woman did as a girl. There is nothing to fear in seeing human beings with open eyes and hearing them with open ears. You will not lose yourself by embracing others, you will find new parts of yourself. You will be alive.