Grief, Parenting, Reviews
Comments 27

On Pan, the movie and the fear of Death


On Sunday, Emma and I took the car into Belfast, on a very quiet and bright morning and went to see Pan, the movie released last year.

Emma knew of Peter Pan, of course and had watched the classic version of the film several times but you can never beat a Disney movie!

We had booked our tickets online via the Odeon Kids’ Cinema and paid £3.00 for both of us, so it was an extra bonus realising that we were the only ones watching Pan, as we got to sit in the comfy seats and chatted to our hearts’ desire, without disturbing anyone.

Emma was engrossed from the word go and although she found some elements spooky, like the pirates kidnapping the boys from their orphanage dormitory at night and of course, cruel Mother Barnabas, she thoroughly enjoyed it and spoke about it for the rest of the day.

What did I come away with myself, as a bereaved mother?

I picked some golden nuggets that continued to simmer in my head over the weekend and came to some very interesting conclusions.

First of all, Blackbeard and his Utopian kindgom, built on the intense labour of thousands of boys and grown up men, made me question our fear of dying.

Bleackbeard, just like the wicked witch in Rapunzel, is obsessed with staying young and stops at nothing in his pursuit of eternity.

Child labour. Manipulation of ideologies and promotion of a fake “free” land in exchange for personal gain. Abuse of power, control and killing of anyone who shows noncompliance.

Blackbeard does it all and more.


Because he is afraid of what lies beyond the grave. As simple as that.

In complete contrast, the native population of the island he had decimated systematically, has another view of life. When faced with death, the wise old man of the village proclaims it as “the biggest adventure yet.”

I am not writing this to encourage or promote suicidal thoughts. I am writing this because it has dawned on me, on Sunday, while watching a kids’ movie with my daughter , that I have had this wrong all along.

Death is not to be feared. Death is never the end but the mere beginning of the biggest Beyond adventure.

Yes, I still fear the pain of leaving or seeing a loved one dying. I now know very well the devastating impact the separation has upon the ones left behind.

And in the same thought thread, I also know why God never intervenes to “save” us from Death.

I understood this clearly last night, while I was modeling clay and painstakingly creating visual reminders of my grief journey in the Belfast Children’s Hospice.

The pleasure for God has always been in creating, in giving breath. That is His ultimate talent and life is to be seen simplistically, if you choose, as a gift.

Death, in the same consequential pattern, is part of the process. What is born must die. What had breath must cease existing one day. Laws of life.

Our calling, if you want to see it as such, is to accept both aspects.

So stop praying. Stop begging. Stop tormenting yourself with thoughts of death as punishment.

Instead, just choose to live fully and beautifully what was given to you. No matter how long or short your journey will be, make the most of it by simply being in it, consciously and intensely.

As for me, I dream of a boy with light hair and blue eyes who, just like Peter Pan, is proud to be “his mother’s son” and whom I will meet again one day, with plenty of tales of life well lived. Because his death has opened my eyes to life.

This entry was posted in: Grief, Parenting, Reviews
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Mum to one beautiful girl on earth and one sweet baby boy in heaven. Privileged carer. Encourager and friend.


  1. There are messages for us everywhere we look if we are aware of them, and you are profoundly aware Oana. I loved your line: “No matter how long or short your journey will be, make the most of it by simply being in it, consciously and intensely.” You know the meaning of life in a way that others who have never experienced your pain ever will. Thank you for another powerful and insightful post x

  2. What a lovely insightful post. I’m like you, I look for the messages in all sorts of places. I’ve never been afraid of death, but it’s difficult to escape the suffering when someone you love passes away. Sometimes you can think too much, but it’s not a bad thing when your thinking helps you find peace. x

  3. Oh this brought tears to my eyes. I can really feel for you and your pain. I can’t imagine the journey you’re having to take but how amazing to gain such insight to share xx

  4. What a beautiful and insightful post. I have to admit that I am blind to hidden meanings in films, no idea why – normally takes someone to point it out to me

  5. I can’t begin to imagine how the loss of a child impacts on you every single day. Thanks for sharing your thoughts with all of us – they are insightful & beautiful & worth remembering when life is tough x

  6. Oh that lest sentence made me shed a tear. I am sorry that you are going through this, but your words are beautiful and insightful and I am sure they will help many people. I also feel the need to share with you my Neice whose son died 7 years ago aged 6 months had a little baby girl this week.

  7. I like to think that every living soul that touches our lives for just a moment leaves a little of their magic behind for us to play with. Sometimes that magic is bright and sometimes dark but it’s always there keeping us company, shaping who we are. xxx

  8. Robin Masshole Mommy says

    Wow, what an inspiring post. This is definitely a great way to look at it.

  9. I Love peter pan, he fills me with courage and makes me believe that we always gotta let the boy inside be free, that way we can live our life to the fullest.

  10. Wow this post brought such a peace to my thoughts. Everyone dies and we only fear it because we don’t know what is on the other side. Having peaceful thoughts about it I think can make us make more rational decisions in life.

  11. Elizabeth O. says

    I also fear death myself, I am afraid to leave this world without assurance that my kids will be alright without me. What I realized is that my fear also stems from my thoughts about suffering before the actual death. Anyway, thank you for the reminder and for the good read.

  12. patricemfoster says

    Inspiring blog post love the video felt like this will be a great story. Like others my fears death & dying are of the unknown.

  13. We waste our precious lives if we are constantly living in fear. Enjoying each moment to its fullest is definitely the way to go.

  14. Rosey says

    Such a great intro. and you have touched on so many things in it. I enjoyed the movie clilp too.

  15. There really is no point in fearing something that will come to all of us. It is the unknown so we should just live our lives to the fullest and not worry so much about it

  16. Because I'm cheap says

    What a beautiful and touching post! Not what I expected.

  17. mskathykenny says

    This is a good movie for my son and I to watch. I’ve been looking for things to do with my son this summer.

  18. hautebeautyguide says

    I am really looking forward to this movie! Peter Pan was a favorite as a kid.

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