It is not every day that we think about mortality, even though it is perhaps one of few certainties in life.
Recently, I had the fortune of reading a book titled “Being Mortal: Medicine and What Matters in the End“. Personally it left me with more questions than answers. For someone who is under 30 this year, it is quite difficult to think about topics revolving around death. What resonated with me very much, however, is the end-of-life stage, as one starts losing control over one’s abilities. Basic cognitive functions such as recall become difficult, as in Alzheimer’s. Basic motor skills also degenerate.
This also made me link to the fact that Singaporeans are generally living longer, but not aging healthily. It leaves food for thought on how one wants to ensure one is able to properly function for as long as possible, yet also leaves food for thought over a far more wicked problem: how do we view ourselves towards the ends of our lives? Surely we do not want to be a burden to the people around us when it is time to go. Surely we do not want to live our last moments in pain, neither do we want to live our lives with full knowledge of a noose that will eventually take us.
The thought of being stuck in a hospital bed, being anchored by tubes is not an exhilarating one. But such a thought provides me powerful motivation to keep healthy (to maintain performance), and to make sure my dreams become reality, someday.