The Bliss Blog

The Bliss Blog

Before I Die




This is a subject that some find challenging to speak of and still others avoid totally, and yet taking our last breath is as natural as taking our first; the cycle of life in completion. I have never witnessed a birth in person, but have been what I consider a mid-wife at the passing of  patients, friends and loved ones, including my husband and father. My mother chose to make her exit only in the presence of a hospice caregiver, so I wasn’t there as I had hoped to be. Each time, there was a blending of sadness and serenity; a sense of surrender to what is. Each time too, I knew that these deaths would come to be. Had I experienced sudden deaths, it would have had a different feel to it, I’m sure. And yet, the truth is, none of us knows which day we will be called to make that transition.


Enter the “Before I Die Project”.   I discovered it in Friday’s email from DailyGood:  News That Inspires. It offers an alternative to the ‘if it bleeds, it leads’ mentality that permeates some forms of journalism, with an ‘if it feeds (the heart and soul:), it leads’ sensibility.

Candy Chang; the designer of the project is, according to her website:  “a public installation artist, designer, urban planner, TED Fellow, and co-founder of Civic Center in New Orleans.”  She has taken an abandoned building in Katrina-ravished New Orleans and made it into a magnificent canvas for the hopes, dreams, wishes, desires and visions of passersby who, with rainbow colored chalk in hand, leave a city sanctioned graffiti legend.


People of all ages have written entries such as:

Before I die, I want to:

Raise my children.

Evaporate into the light.

Tell my mother I love her.

Travel the world.

Find my mythical creature.

Live in another country.

Be someone’s cavalry.

If you had that wall before you, what would you write on it?


There is a marvelous piece by one of my favorite singer songwriters named David Roth that speaks to this idea.

BEFORE I DIE  © 1991 David Roth


Before I die I want to be


The richest man in history

I want to have a wealth of friends

Abundant love that never ends

Before I die I want to find

A lover who is soft and kind

And one last piece of cherry pie

That’s what I want before I die


Before I die I want to choose

Some different roads and avenues

I want to walk each one in peace

And all my obstacles release

Before I die I want to know

I’ve told you that I love you so

I love you so, I love you so


That’s what I want you to know

Before I die I want to be

The  richest man in history

And one last piece of cherry pie

That’s what I want before I die


  • http://AddaURLtothiscomment yvonne kaye

    Comments are beautiful but I am in such grief now, I can’t think straight. The hell I call my childhood during WW2’s blitz, when we were bombed, homeless, hungry, devastated, fostered, and then rebuilt for these people to set fire to it again close to where my family lives, is more than I can bear at present. I am filled with rage and your article has soothed me but it isn’t my death I am thinkiing of right now.

  • Anna

    Before I die I want to
    Travel around the would
    Do something new in this world
    and maybe most important – say”I love you” to most close people

  • http://AddaURLtothiscomment IndraStarshine

    I want to return to India & visit Babas’ Ashrams
    Be completely Loving Awareness

  • Edie Weinstein


    My heart is with you as you mourn the state of your home-land. Violence makes no sense):


  • Edie Weinstein


    Saying I love you is among the most important things we can do to create a life of meaning.

    Enjoy your travels too!


  • Edie Weinstein


    May your journey be blessed.



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