Creating space to pause, reflect and share experiences with dying and death

A single bare lightbulb hung over the bed

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A single bare lightbulb hung over the bed

12:30 am I stood in the bedroom of a sixty-four year old woman actively dying. Her 24 year old nephew and main caregiver by her side. Room was tiny and hot. A single bare lightbulb hung over the bed. A new family came and went by 2am. It was nephew, another young nephew, 20s? and his pregnant teenage girlfriend. None understood how close death was. I explained as I was there to do what was happening — words shared – support given. Tears and sadness over took the young adults. All three were vulnerable – all three history of some form of mental illness, poverty and little formal education.

Then the magic happened – as nephew/ caregiver suggested we sing his aunt “Home”. In that moment all lines, borders, expectations, barriers dissipated. At that moment the power of a collective whole came forth holding a sacred space of grace. We stood hand in hand and sang Kathy home.

At that moment humility and gratitude enveloped my heart. How blessed to be at that moment. Thank you HPC!