The Dying Time
In the dying time, time slows down. Every thing is sacred and significant. Each breath is a count away from the last. In the dying time, the sacred and the profane walk hand in hand. What were her last words? Did we get the password for her phone? Did she hear us sing? Did she hear the things we didn’t say? What will we do with all these swabs and tubes? What did her parents look like when she saw them in the room? Who will wear her clothes? Who will wear her shoes? Who will wear her wedding ring?
Do you want to be in the room when they come to carry her away? Everyone says goodbye in a different way. My son wore a suit and a bow tie and played songs for her on his guitar. He knew she liked it when people dressed up. Her sisters sang childhood songs. My father whispered in her ear. Her sons slept on the floor and held vigil the last night she was alive. Her beautiful friend the hospice nurse checked her vital signs, stethoscope, pulse, heartbeat, breath. We each gave her permission to go, in our own way.
The dying time is holy holy holy and as part of life, as ordinary as air.
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