I was witness to another death this past weekend. An old man that I had helped to care for was suddenly taking a turn towards death. After settling him in a Hospice House, there was nothing for me to do but be Present. There was a deep Quiet and Awareness in the room. He had lost consciousness several days ago and had stop moving, stopped fidgeting, and was only barely breathing.
It was a very moving, very powerful experience to be with him and just BE there in the Quiet, the only sound I could hear was his slightly labored breathing. At the end of the room was a laundry basket that held the last of his earthly belongings. A few sets of clothes, an electric razor, a comb, a tattered old wallet with his identification in it. I could not help but mediate on this laundry basket and its smallness, compared to the 96 years of life this man had lived.
The Quiet was the most vivid part of the experience. He went so quickly and silently. It was one of those deaths where the person just stopped breathing. Period.
I will pick up his ashes tomorrow and help him be laid to rest in the cemetery for veterans.
This morning that specific quiet of Death is hovering around me and I am trying to let it Be and Welcome it. But I confess I feel a bit saddened and a bit lost.
Everyone tells me that I have a Gift for working with the Dying, and I personally think it is only because I have embraced and accepted the thousands of death I died in my childhood and my early adult life.
I have noticed that there is a desire growing inside of me to work with the Living. As my own Dawn grows, I want to share the Gift of Embracing Life, as much as I have shared the Gift of Embracing Death.
With Quiet Grief and Quiet Joy Today,
Gabriel Orion Marie