Another Reminder of Mortality

The other day, I attended the funeral of a cousin. He was closer to my dad and I was closer to his kids, getting together with them to enjoy our own escapades while our parents went out dancing.

Still, my cousin was good to me and I will always remember him fondly.

Funerals are moving experiences but they always hit me hardest when they’re over and I’m alone with my own thoughts.

What left me with an indelible mark (as other funerals have done) was seeing his coffin lowered into the ground, his body still warm within it, never to be seen again, down there with the cold earth and the worms.


Yes, there are those who believe that the soul has fled to a better place but it is still difficult to remove that image of the person, someone who stood in front of us, vibrant and animated at one time, descending lifeless into the all-encompassing earth.

When I got home, I rented The Theory of Everything, with no intention of drawing any relationship between the funeral and the movie.

And yet, there was.

You see, Stephen Hawking wanted to discover a theory about the origins of time and he asks such questions as, if we had the ability to turn back time, would we?

There is a touching montage at the end of the movie in which the major events of the movie go in reverse and we are left with the image of Stephen as a young, healthy, budding scientist with no disease.

So I think of the movie and my dead cousin and I wonder, if we had that ability, would we turn back time?

And, again, I am reminded of my own mortality.


About randycoates

Randy Coates graduated from the University of Waterloo with a bachelor of arts degree and went on to acquire his teacher’s certificate at the University of Western Ontario. He is currently an elementary teacher in the Toronto District Board of Education.
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