31 January ~2012
I have been reading a very good book about the transformation a person goes through when nearing death - they begin to withdraw, become more relaxed, silent, and can exhibit a quality of radiance. The period has been described as a clearing of the self so God can fill us, and a time when the "quality of the sacred begins to emerge."1
Mom hasn't spoken for over a week, when she recognized me as I entered her room and she said 'Jim!!.' I sit close and hold her hands, which she seems to respond to. On Sunday I brought her cat to see her. Mom opened her eyes wide, and when I placed her cat on her stomach Mom put her arms around Kitty. Her cat relaxed also, and laid her head down while Mom was touching her.
A few weeks ago Mom apologized for how hard this has all been. Of course I told her that she has nothing to be sorry for, that she has been perfect. She is getting more and more perfect as she struggles from body to spirit, towards the mystery that someday we all will experience. I told her everything will be ok with her, in Heaven, and I expect her to wait for me there.
1The Grace of Dying, by Kathleen Dowling Sing, p8.
It is impossible that anything so natural, so necessary, and so universal as death, should ever have been designed by Providence as an evil to mankind.
- Jonathan Swift
Let children walk with Nature, let them see the beautiful blendings and communions of death and life, their joyous inseparable unity, as taught in woods and meadows, plains and mountains and streams of our blessed star, and they will learn that death is stingless indeed, and as beautiful as life.
- John Muir