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Saturday, September 27, 2014

Witness

My brother and his wife Fran were here yesterday and since I haven’t seen her since before my dad died, we all talked quite a bit about how he passed.  I know he made the conscious decision that it was time, but what I didn’t know was how he sort of “reported” back every time he came out of the pain medication stupor.   Fran was trying to come up with a word for it and I said it sounded like he witnessed it.  She said “yes!  That’s what it was…he was witnessing it”

That is how I want to go.  I’ve always said I want to see it coming, and I do (so long as it’s a natural death).  I want to be happy about it (as he was), ready for it (as he was) and not angry or troubled by what I have gone through (as he seemed to be).  It is amazing to me that he was able to do that; perhaps it was the drugs for which they finally gave him enough.   I’m still saddened that the last couple years of his life were painful, confusing ones.  I’ve had years to process my condition; it’s been a slow, steady (though sometimes faster than others) march into more and more pain; my dad’s as a fast plunge.  And he was 87 when it started; 90 when it ended. 

I think being able to sit back and watch what was your life go by, while also being able to see what’s ahead (he could) would be a fabulous farewell!  Letting go of the fear, the anger, unfulfilled wishes, unreached goals, self-degradation, helplessness, unfairness and all other negative human qualities we cling to like a baby with a pacifier; because a pacifier is exactly what those emotions are.  Self-pity.  We think we deserve more, need more, want more…and when we get it, it’s never enough.  And it doesn’t have to be things.  It can be a twisted definition of love (which is why it’s not fulfilling) or shame at not finishing college, not having children, having children or any number of a million other things we think has rendered our lives meaningless.  How sad.  I see myself in this picture often.


I really think when I reach a place where I am ready to REALLY let go of all those things, and not just in a momentary acceptance of letting go that feels like a soft, warm wind and lets me surrender completely, I will be able to do it.   They dying part might still take a long time, but if I am really in acceptance mode the whole time, it won’t matter.  Being in acceptance while being in the kind of pain I’m in will be the challenging part.  And it isn’t letting up.  Not one little bit. I’m so very tired.  At least once or twice a week I’m on my knees begging for release from the pain.  One way or another.  It helps to have so many loved ones on the other side.

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