First day of Death…….education.

Here is how my last day of 2012 went: 

I woke up this morning from a wonderful, 10-hour sleep on my new Sealy mattress that my best friend Royal bought me for Christmas. I was so well rested that I forgot the reason why I set my alarm to 7:45 a.m.

I made myself two cups of coffee and then packed my bag with loose-leaf paper, writing utensils and my Kindle Fire which had my e-textbook inside.

Today was the first day of death and dying school! 

I’m taking this mini winter class to fulfill my capstone and diversity requirement, and, you know, taking it for the obvious reason: my obsession with the science behind death.

This is technically a course for a Social Work major. When I first signed up, I was a little nervous about it because I thought the entire course would mainly be about how to comfort someone. That’s cool and all but I want something beyond that — and I got it!

The syllabus says that we’ll be learning about how death is handled with various cultures such as Native American, Asian and Hawaiian including religions like Judaism, Buddhism and Christianity.

Along with those topics, we’re going to plan our own funeral and learn about the business of it and so much more! A mortician will even come speak to the class! What a fantastic way to end 2012 and to start 2013.

Surprisingly, there are about 20 or more students in the class. It’s a diverse audience as well; most of them are majoring either in social work, psychology, biology or nursing (guess whose the only journalism major in there?).

The first half of the day mostly consisted of an introduction (this class is four hours btw). We had to pick a partner to get to know each other and then they would have to introduce us to the class (I hate a lot of things about this. I’d rather introduce myself because its way easier and you’ll get to know me personally compared to a person just telling the audience something about you. Also, I hate group activities.).

The interview questions were basic (to the eyes of a journalist, anyway): What’s your major, why did you choose this class, what do you hope to get out of it and list something that people wouldn’t know about you.

A pretty cool chick named Taylor and I partnered up and here’s what I told her:

I’m Molly and I’m a journalism major. I chose this class because I have a fascination with death and I also have background experience with funeral homes (I’ve witnessed an embalming and prepared bodies for funerals). I hope to get enjoyment out of this class especially since we’ll be learning about different cultures (I love this!). Something that people may not know about me is that I have a fascination with astronomy and space, and I hope to be the first journalist to report from space (this is true). 

And so when she introduced me with all of that to the class, I received so much attention that it became awkward. All eyes were on me. I was too shy to look up at anyone and acknowledge them (even the instructor!) and I cringed as if I were a turtle going back into its shell.

I HAVE NEVER GOTTEN SO MANY “OOOOHS!” AND “AHHHS!” BEFORE FOR AN “ABOUT ME”. 

And who was Taylor? A junior who can’t make up her mind with what major she wanted to pursue and is looking forward to learn how to comfort others during times of loss. Maybe I should have been more simple? But, then again, a girl admitted in her “about me” that she owns a baby monkey

…what is she going to do when that thing turns its back on her for the wild side? Hopefully the attack won’t be her cause of death. Ha. Ha. Speaking of…

We also took like, three surveys about our thoughts on death. The longest one was 74 questions asking things like, “Would you want to know how much time you have left to live?”, “How would you want to die?”, “If you were to commit suicide, what technique would you use?”, and “If you had a terminal illness, who would you want to tell you first?” 

What’s even more depressing is that there’s a 10 page paper due on the last day of class (a.k.a. in two weeks).

Anyways, I’m very excited about this class and I’ll share the most interesting things (why not all?). And I know, I need to share some of my experiences! How about I post something like that during this week?

Well, Happy New Year. So far, it’s a great start. I have an internship interview in April for The Sparks Tribune.

Celebrate safe and well and see you later this week! I’ll be shooting fireworks off by a lake.

-Molly

P DOT S: Please check out this amazing, clever and easy eggless cookie dough recipe from Fun Foods On a Budget! I made it like, three times and it makes you yell “LIFE IS GOOD!” in the kitchen because it’s that delicious. And no, pregnancy is not required.