Trying to Remember Peace

Spare me the platitudes. I know, I believe, I trust that she is with her family. Don’t tell me that God took her home, because then you would want me to believe that a loving God/Goddess killed her children and her husband one by blessed one and that is not a God I will ever worship.

Today I struggle to be glad that she died peacefully in my arms, and so quickly, before that god-awful disease ravaged her and I was able to practice what I believe — that Love is present to each gasp and welcomes your heartbeat back into the mighty and resounding pulse of life. I was able to be the hands of the Goddess who comforts me and comforted her, administering the drugs that eased her labor, being the loving face that smiled at the moment of her death, rejoicing that she is with Wayne and Jan and Chad, and stilling the voice that wanted to scream and scream and scream “do not leave me.” I could find moments of peace in her (Deb’s) and Her (The Lady’s) Love

Today, when I cannot remember that life will ever be normal again, still as I sit here in her house I remember that she was loving and extraordinary and my sister. We bickered and fenced as sisters do and we loved one another. She protected me to the very end making sure that there were caretakers to do what was too hard or beyond me and still letting our intimacy make space for the physical demands of dying.

There has been so much loss. I said to my shrink on the morning Jan’s death, the older of Deb’s children and the second to die, what makes this so painful is that I know I will laugh again, I will recover, because we recovered from Chad’s loss. Losing your sister doesn’t end your world. It merely feels that way. What I fear is that I will feel this way for a very long time.

And yet I know, you love me and so does the Lady. I know she will call me to be her hands and heart and voice again and give little heed to my whimpering because people will need shoring up. And so today, I cry and remember Deb in her living and her dying and try and remember that Peace is there, even when I cannot find it, and trust that it will invade my heart again. Oh, Deb. my heart is broken. This may be the hardest blow I have ever sustained. So I’ll try to keep being present to the pain and the beauty, try hard not to break under the weight of knowing that we will be making no new memories and I’ll go about the doing of those things that are needed at the end of a life. write the obituary, pick a date for the funeral and discover in which closet Deb hid the box that holds the ashes of our parents and her husband and will hold her in death as well. Now there’s an agenda.

cook with rosemary, don’t hug me too hard or cling, I’m fragile.


6 thoughts on “Trying to Remember Peace

  1. I am sitting her weeping as I read your “laid bare” emotion….I am STILL grieving the loss of my Dad 8 mths ago….and now as we are about to go thru Winter I am riddled w/sadness…it makes death seem more real this time of year.

  2. Ann, I had the privilege of holding my sister as well. And you captured pretty much how I felt and sometimes feel. My big sister spared so many people the knowledge of exactly what was happening to her, being her graced self to the end. I am so glad I slept in her hospice room for all three of her last nights, to be there so she would not panic because her mouth no longer could move. To be there. WITH THE PEACE. For peace there was. My own chaos came afterward, as it is with you. At least close enough so I do feel I can say to you I understand. I am here. I will send you my number through another channel. Beautiful writing, beautiful love, sister, and beautiful you. I love you.

  3. My heart is breaking for you, Ann. It’s very little solace to say I’m sorry, but it’s all I have. Sending much love….

  4. powerful emotions so beautifully wrought. Love and strength to you in this chapter without Deb’s physical presence to relish. Her spiritual presence cannot be dimmed.

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