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Posts tagged ‘Path’

Shellacking the Tea Tray

The time after my father’s death.

I feel like a washing machine waiting for the agitation cycle to finish. While my hips take their sweet time to heal as an external measure of the life transition sloshing under my lid, I get out the shellack to keep myself busy and away from meddling with my interior rearrangement. Healing was never accomplished by fiddling. Read more

The Scent of Dying

As I slowly mourn, I am in the house where I grew up and where I cared for my father in his last days. The house has become an altar…I remember the scents of his dying. Read more

Flesh Remembering

After my father’s death.

Neck
A friend tells me to lie down. Rest. I will massage your neck. I recline on my back and draw a quilt over me. The friend slides her fingertips along the side of my neck beneath my ear lobes. The pressure is light. My skull fills, images and colors colliding, eager crime scene witnesses needing to tell. My neck remembers my father’s last two weeks of bed bound changes. Read more

Last Breath

I continue writing about helping my father as he completed his life. At this posting my father has already died, but this piece and the following few posts concern his end days.

December 31
He snuck that last breath by me. It was a soft little breath.

For a day and a half he had been curled against the raised bed and mounds of pillows, his head tilted and turned to the right so he wouldn’t choke on secretions and on the morphine tucked and massaged into his cheek. Read more

Internal

From writings about helping my father as he completes his life.

He is more and more internal. Even when awake he is internal. I am more internal. I write less. Say less. Express less. Except to John, the other caregiver. We talk about him, about how we each see him and this part of his journey. These conversations go very deep. We are powerless, cradled in the palm of the Great Power. Read more

I Become an Angel

From writings about helping my father as he completes his life.

I slide my arm under his shoulders to move him gently onto the pillows. He is all skewed and will wake with a crick in his neck if he sleeps too long that way. As I move him, he opens his eyes and gazes at me. Pure pure pure love. He smiles. All his face arranges itself around the feeling of happiness. Read more

There Will be Absence

From writings about helping my father as he completes his life.

Late night. Alone in my bed. The wind sighs heavily in the maple trees, sifting through branches with fewer and fewer leaves to rustle. The sound sits on me. I feel my feelings. Windows of connection with my father shrink. There are no longer infinite moments. I digest this. I feel this. Read more

Facing Fear: Conversation with Surya Jane

As some of prepare for retreat in the wilds, fear of snakes and spiders, bears and bobcats comes along. Surya Jane and I got into interchange about fear and facing fear. Wild animals bring wonder but also our most primordial fears and dark dreams to the surface. Read more

Losing & Powerlessness

I look out at Hermits Peak in New Mexico glowing fantastically in early day light. I let my eyes relax. My natural gaze, not reaching or glazing, just my eyes relaxing on this vision, leaning my visual capacity against the beauty. The wind swirls around me, sweet with the rain that tamped down the dust yesterday. Having the morning quiet to feel my eyes look and see, because so often they scan what is there and trigger it into what isn’t there, or take a shard of something– a table edge or a pine tree, for instance — and turn it into another tree from another time, mixing the two trees into one tree rather than just seeing what is right there Read more

Letting Go

I sit alone in the middle of the night in the living room of my parents’ house that is also the house where I grew up. I did my homework here, watched snow fall here, I ate meals, took baths, danced, and slept here. This house still smells of childhood, of woods fires and sea air. My parents will never come back to this house. I sit in my mother’s blue chair as if I might absorb a lingering presence of her body, but she is not here. She has been increasingly restless in her blue chair for the past two years as her dementia confused her, then sad and frenzied after Dad’s stroke.

Last week she sat in her chair and waited for him to come sit in his even though she knew, then forgot over and over, that he couldn’t ever sit there again. Read more