How long do you want to live?

If you could choose your date of death, (depressing I know but we will all die at some point) what would it be? 90, 100 or beyond? I’m terrified of death and don’t want to die any time soon but at the same time, I’m not sure I want to live to blow 145 candles as Indonesia’s Mbah Gotho who says he was born in 1870.

If you could choose your date of death, (depressing I know but we will all die at some point) what would it be? 90, 100 or beyond? I’m terrified of death and don’t want to die any time soon but at the same time, I’m not sure I want to live to blow 145 candles as Indonesia’s Mbah Gotho who says he was born in 1870.

That is old! Surprisingly, he can still sit up and even cross his legs which I think is remarkable. He also still smokes though and I wonder how he survived lung cancer which most smokers tend to contract. Mr Gotho attributes his long life to patience so if you’re reading this and want a long life, try it. 

 

Whenever I think of ageing, I think of the older people in my family. As with most people, my relatives aren’t immune to the health challenges of our time and as such, I’ve had loved ones struggling with Diabetes, High Blood Pressure and even liver complications for years before losing the battle. Most of my relatives died in their 70s, 80s or 90s so I have no clue what I would look or feel like well into my 100s! Would I still be able to taste my favourite foods, see and hear things clearly?

 

Hope so because I don’t think I would cope without these senses that we so often take for granted. Mr Gotho who has outlived all his siblings, his four wives and all his children says he now wants to die. In fact, he has been “ready” for the inevitable since 1992 and even picked out his gravestone. 

 

I mentioned that I’m scared of death but even more terrifying is dying alone, without any loved ones to make your last days comfortable and as painless as possible but even more than that, I hate the idea of dying and not being missed. Relatives may dread taking care of you but at least they’re there and many old people find that reassuring. Someone will likely turn up to feed you, give you a bath or change you. 

And when you eventually die, people will turn up for the funeral and maybe even shed a tear. Not so if they all died years before your own death. I wish we didn’t have to age and die, that somehow, God made a way for us all to stay young, healthy and happy. 

Lately, I’ve been feeling a little sad every time I read about futuristic projections. Like when studies and researchers proclaim that a certain disease will be cured by 2050 or that the world will be a certain way 60 or so years from now and I’m not sure I will be alive to see it. 

I guess those who died decades ago felt the same way. Now I feel bad for those who didn’t live to see the technological advancements we enjoy today. Millions never knew the Internet! Isn’t that sad?

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