Last Saturday, we had a intriguing conversation and channel about death, birth, and Afterlife. I asked a question before we started. Lately my Facebook feed has been featuring a hospice nurse in one-minute clips explaining what it’s like to die. Her words are comforting as she walks people through the process as she experiences it in hospice. I wondered if that was a sign that we are all being forced to face our own death.
Such a perspective—to live each day as if it were the last—it certainly not new. All the way back to my forays into Carlos Castenada I was learning how facing death was an integral part of fully living. But this string of video clips felt like they were there for a specific reason.
After the channel, I got a message from Lindsay, the daughter of my best friend growing up. I had emailed Jan back in December, reminding her that it was time for us to get together again before our 50th reunion next September. Oddly, she sent a blank email back. I wondered if she was mad at me, or just too busy to really respond. I sent back a few witty quips, and did not hear back.
Lindsay responded on Saturday, letting me know that her mom had been diagnosed with terminal brain cancer last October and was at home with hospice. She had one to four weeks to live.
I immediately made arrangements to go see her. The following morning, I arrived at the house she lived in with her husband of over 40 years, right next door to the house she grew up in. Memories flooded—junior high coming of age, all our fights and make-ups, college, grown ups, working together at the same non-profit. We had had a terrible fight, but luckily the last time I saw her, we made up and promised not to let so much time pass.
Seeing her in bed, puffed up by steroids, blind in one eye, hardly able to talk, I was astounded at her still upbeat, quirky humor. She insisted that she would be my date for the reunion, albeit in a wheel chair (“Because we’re old now.”) When she looked at me, she saw me, and her eyes were saying, “No, not likely, but let’s pretend for now.”
As I left her there, surrounded by her family, I didn’t know if I would see her again in this life. The words of this channel were ringing in my head, and I held fast to the knowledge that life continues after the body is gone, and once we get to Afterlife, it’s one big party.
Before I left, I asked her to find me. She promised not only would she find me, but she would haunt me until it was my turn. Even if I live to be 96 like my Mom or 97 like my Dad, I told her, it will still be the blink of an eye.
Better start living each day like it’s my last.