In dialogue with death

Much has been said how digital communication changed the way we communicate in the 21st century. We’re able to talk to our loved ones by the click of a button. We share countless photos and videos depicting our fast pacing lives.

We’ve become comfortable to share some of our life’s most significant moments on social media, often with an audience we don’t personally know. We merrily include the more insignificant moments: a photo of a plate of food, a sunrise, a spontaneous selfie.

In an era where loneliness is considered a pandemic, it can make us feel closer.

However, when someone dies, we need to ensure that we don’t fall trap to a false sense of closeness. We need real moments that remind us of our shared mortality. This doesn’t always call for the publicised approach. Honour the pause that death invites. Listen to what death has to say without interruption or response. The pause allows a moment for life to respond.

When we craft an audio memorial, we go back to a time before social media, maybe even before the time of radio. We go back to a time where the only stories we knew were the stories told by the voices we know.

When we listen to stories of a loved one who passed away, it’s a tacit reminder that although our loved ones are no longer with us, that their stories live on within us. Listening to a story of a loved one requires intentional “re-membering”: crafting a living imprint of the person who has passed away.

Stories are how we make sense of our lives – especially when grief makes everything seem senseless. Their stories matter, because they matter. Your story matters too. All you need to do is close your eyes and listen.

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