Cycle of Life

Commemorating life changing events for members of Nexus.  Births, Graduations, Marriage, Divorce, Moving in and Moving out.  Diagnoses and Cures.  Deaths, and Remembrances.  If it affects you and you want to share or announce, feel welcome.

Location: Everywhere
Members: 14
Latest Activity: Mar 1, 2015

Commemorating Events of our Lives

Please join if you wish to commemorate the events that shape your life.

 Whether it's a new baby, adoption, triumph over adversity, a medical diagnosis, a success, or a loss.  Celebrate, or grieve, the loss of a loved one, respected mentor, role model.  If it moves you, or you think it will move others, this is a good place to share the experience.

You can post either as a comment on the comment wall, or in a discussion.

Discussion Forum

A tribute to my father

Started by Brent Feeney. Last reply by Joan Denoo May 12, 2014. 1 Reply

So, I guess most of you here know that my dad died back in January of complications of Parkinson's disease. There have been times that have been rough since then, but I'd think it's all part of the…Continue

Green Burial

Started by Daniel W. Last reply by Ruth Anthony-Gardner Jan 30, 2013. 1 Reply

When I go, this is what I want. White Eagle Memorial Park. From their website:  20 beautiful acres set within…Continue

Tags: heritage, death, life cycles, natural burial, green burial

How do you commemorate a major life event?

Started by Daniel W. Last reply by The Flying Atheist Dec 11, 2012. 5 Replies

My family planted trees for births and deaths.  Of course, there were official events too, like weddings, chili suppers at church, barbecues if weather permitted, dinners, wakes and funerals.I used…Continue

Comment Wall


You need to be a member of Cycle of Life to add comments!

Comment by Idaho Spud on November 5, 2014 at 2:33pm

Daniel, I enjoyed hearing about Miss Kitty.

Comment by Donald R Barbera on November 5, 2014 at 5:13am

Daniel--So sorry to hear of your loss. To me, animals are some of the best friends we can ever have. They ask nothing and give generously. I know that death is part of the circle of life, but knowing that does not ease the pain of losing a friend. Perhaps, the new kitty hanging around will provide some comfort.

Comment by Joan Denoo on November 4, 2014 at 11:38pm

Daniel, Your story of Miss Kitty rings so many bells with me. The words you use to describe your experiences with her, the gentle acceptance of her independence, her "joyful sweet presence when here", and your flow of companionship, making no demands, enjoying being with each other, feels so natural. 

The introduction of a new tabby kitty may develop into another sweet presence. 

Comment by The Flying Atheist on November 4, 2014 at 10:32pm

Daniel, sorry to hear one of your furry friends isn't around anymore, but just like the cycle of life, I'm glad to hear that another kitty has shown up to possibly take her place.  You're a wonderful person for providing a stable and loving environment. 

Comment by Daniel W on November 4, 2014 at 9:49pm

Miss Kitty. 

Born:  unknown. 

Died.  Unknown.

Alias:  Kitty Cat.

Miss Kitty was a stray. 

Ning rescued her when he was told she would need to be taken to the shelter - ie, euthanized - because she was untended.  That was 13 years ago.

She went through a few names.  Never answered to any.  She tore out 2 screen windows, so I gave up trying to keep her as an indoor cat, put in a cat door, and let her come and go as she pleased.

Miss Kitty had her own life.  She always hung around when I was outside.  She allowed the dogs to sniff her, but nothing more close than that.  She always tore off any collar we tried to put on her.  Mostly, she came in to eat, or when it was cold and rainy.

In late September, she stopped showing up.  She had been looking more scruffy than usual. I was thinking about taking her to the vet, although I don't think she would have tolerated that.

So she's gone.  I joyful sweet presence when here, but lived in her own world, and now I suppose headed to stardust.  I will miss her.

I don't believe in a grand order to things, or reincarnation, but within a few days of her disappearance, a new tabby kitten started hanging out under the deck at the country place. I don't know what will happen there. There are lots of mice....

Comment by Daniel W on August 29, 2014 at 9:43pm
Spud and Joan, thank you. I have known so many people who were comforted and given joy by their companion animals. Without them life eould be mre sad. In the Zen Buddhist way, suffering come from loss, and loss from attachment. To avoid suffering, we learn to let go. But. There is confort even in the loss, because if there is no sense of loss, then there was no joy in being there. I'm truly grateful.

Russell, it's wonderful that youbhad the chance to get to know your dad better. Quite a guy!
Comment by Russell Pangborn on August 28, 2014 at 2:38pm

Not a divorce or marriage - but a wow moment!

I was in my music room and a book fell off the shelf.  It was a book of Dads letters to the editor and responses to them individually preserved in plastic.  I found he had saved a Toronto Star Running Pump ad for a gig done with my first band. We were a Deep Purple cover band called Marlo. This was in 1974 and I am now seeing the ad 40 years later.


I also discovered some great never before seen letters he wrote on atheism and in response to a Christian group that wanted to change the curriculum in schools to reflect more religion. The local paper was great in allowing a huge discussion to take place with very long letters being published.  It appears he was on one side and many people were on the other.  I got a huge laugh out of one from the Vice President of the Ontario Conservative Party who was given a column to respond to my dad and was very condescending.  He refers to one letter writer as a student in Oakville and “one A.L. Pangborn  who is unknown to me, but is presumably an adult living in Oakville.”


The paper published a full page letter that was my dad’s reply to all the enraged and mildly interested Christian replies. He starts out with “Wow! I only hope I can handle this Christian onslaught.  They’ve taken the bait!!”  He answers each letter writers arguments in turn. Then it is the Vice President of the Ontario Conservative Party’s turn and dad says “We now come to Mr. W.S.Thomson who was unknown to me, but is presumably an adult in Oakville”    - I fell off my chair when reading that! 

I still can't get over how growing up I never knew my dad was an atheist and how he told me not to rock the boat and then when I moved out he wrote all these letters and I only read them much later.

Now, feeling secure in my job as a college professor, I am emulating him.


Here is another neat thing.  My good friend Chris came to my 60th birthday gig at a local bar. We have kept up contact since grade five.  Here in this book was a long letter to the paper from Chris (who is not a writer) basically coming down on my dad’s side with the title “What Religion Should the Schools Teach”.  Knowing Chris, he never saved this stuff, so the next time he visits I am going to show him his letter written over 40 years ago. 

His daughter and my daughter became very close friends and my daughter was the maid of honor at his daughters wedding last weekend.  That is very special also. (got my wedding piece in for our cycle of life group).  You can't force friendship on the next generation but it happened.  I spoke at the wedding and with my grandaughter there (two months old) hoped the next generation carries on the friendship.

Comment by Joan Denoo on August 27, 2014 at 3:40pm

Sadness, disliking the aging process, sorrow about inability to fully function as a youth. dread of what lies ahead, all familiar feeling, not easy ones, they are real, nonetheless.
Is there a way to reduce the emotional cost of such love? I don't know of any way.
Loving Charlie in the moment, looking into his eyes as you gently remove the rheumy crust, taking in consideration his stiff joints by helping when he needs it or not walking as far as you once did, staying close by Charlie and letting him know you are there. These are mere gestures to let him know how much you love Charlie.

Thank you for sharing your feelings and experiences with Charlie and all those wonderful photos on your blog. A tribute to your faithful companion.

Comment by Idaho Spud on August 27, 2014 at 2:18pm

Daniel, I enjoyed your post about your 13 year-old best friend, and it brought tears to my eyes.  I hope you don't mind me reposting it here:


Old Charlie. 8.23.14

Charlie.  8.13.14
He's 13 years old now.  The best friend I ever had.  His eyes are rheumy, and his joints are stiff in the am.  Once in a while he'll fall down for no apparent reason.  He can't handle the heat.  Neither can I.  He breathes heavily with minimal effort.  Even so, he runs up the stairs to greet me, barks at the cat, wags his tale all of the time, rests his chin on the computer keyboard, and stays not more than 5 feet away from me whenever I'm home.  He's comfortable and happy.  I wash his rheumy eyes every day.  His aging breaks my heart.
Comment by The Flying Atheist on July 26, 2014 at 11:32pm

Ahhh, Joan.  Beautiful.


Members (14)



Update Your Membership :




Nexus on Social Media:


© 2017   Atheist Nexus. All rights reserved. Admin: Richard Haynes.   Powered by

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service