Helping Pauline Face Her Sister Death
Like Pauline we could have told God many times you created me without my knowledge about it and will take my life at your convenience. The statement implicates that everyone knows that humans are immortal but still many are not ready to face death. Many are afraid to die because that is leading someone to the unknown or simply the end of non-being. Very few accept that death as a sister or a brother that will accompany us to the next life.
In the case of Pauline it will be very difficult in the beginning for an existential therapist to argue with her the meaning of life when it is the reason that aggravates Pauline’s situation. The twenty year old woman is just finding meaning in her life and the promise of an eminent death brings all her plans to a halt. Though she is filled with rage, her initiative to ask for counseling is a sure sign that she will be able cope with her anxiety.
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To help Pauline, first is to understand her fear that is to be able to penetrate her emotions, her will and dispositions. Many people are afraid to die because we die alone just like when we were born when we came to this world without anything.
Next is to encourage her to face death by preparing well for it and telling her the advantage that life is not being taken away but it is simply what happens to everyone. If she’s been given sometime to live, it would be to her advantage to live fully the times that are still available unlike those people whose life were taken by surprise say for example the 9/11 catastrophe. The victims did not even have the time to say goodbye or leave something pleasing for their loved ones.
Making Pauline realized that there is still time left behind for everything no matter how short life is will certainly increase her hope. In one of the book written by Josemaria Escriva he said that” it is hope in God which sets us “marvelously ablaze with love, with a fire that makes the heart beat strong and keeps it safe from discouragement and dejection, even though along the way one may suffer and at times suffer greatly (Scheffczyk, 2006).”
Scheffczyk, C. L. (2006). Grace in the spirituality of St. Josemaria Escriva [Electronic Version]. Retrieved 09 April 2008, from http://en.romana.org/art/43_8.0_2