Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Final Journey

Tomorrow morning I will sit with a young woman who is going to die any day. She has been battling cancer for the last six years. The battle is lost.

I know from sitting with my dying father how difficult it is to see life pass out of one you love. What words do you say in regards to this thing of dying? How can you ease their journey from this world to the next? Have you said all you want to say? Have you heard all you want to hear?

I sat by Dad’s bed holding his hand truly trying to absorb as much of him as I could through the cold hand resting in the warm, trying to give him life back from me. “I you, Daddy,” I said. I talked of how much he had taught me and about our walks in nature, fishing at the pond, all the memories of a little girl and her dad. I didn’t want to talk of death. But I could not ignore the elephant sitting on my lap. “I’ll always think of you. Some day we will be together again.”

“I know. I just don’t think I’ll make it through this,” he said weakly.

“Its okay, Daddy.”

I think that this dying thing teaches us about love. The older I get the more I understand a comfort in going to be with those I love. The more I realize what is important and what is not. In loss I embrace living.

Tomorrow I will sit with a young mother lying at death’s door. Hopefully, I can offer her comfort and a peaceful journey home. Maybe, just maybe, I will learn something more about this thing called living.

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