I can’t help but miss my mom and dad today. They took such good care of me when I was a child and I would have it again now, in the middle of this malady. (Ofcourse Mary Ann loves me up but good too! But, there’s nothing like a parental caress.)
I think of how they both died and how completely individual it was. My mother died of a massive heart attack, quickly. She had suffered plenty especially with the peripheral neuropathy, but when it came time, it was the big bang. Weeks before the main event, she meticulously said goodbye to people. I think she knew when she would die. I had seen her about a month before and I remembered after she died this was a letting go moment for her. Other people described similar moments with here where she seem to be closing up shop and saying goodbye.
My dad on the other hand constructed his death. He fell and broke his shoulder. Its not unusual for such an event to be the decline of the elderly. He went through a period of confusion and asked my brother one day “Am I dying?” When my brother said yes, he became clear and started to organize himself around that fact. Anyone who knew my father knows that he was a meticulous organizer. And so the count down began. He died one day after his birthday. He waited long enough for me to arrive and we had a special moment together. Later that day he slipped away in a process that lasted about 3 days. Both my brother and I were in the room when he breathed his last. I will never forget it nor lose the sense of gratitude I had in being there. I felt that he had chosen the day and worked to meet his deadline.
I am not dying but this is a brush with death. What I have, the legacy I have from my mom and dad, is to do this my way. To live my life and its ailments as I create it.