I got tired of procrastinating. I just started writing a couple of days ago instead of waiting until I read all thousand pages of the two blogs. I now understand why I was procrastinating.
I started Chapter One with a first look at the impact of the moment of her death. After a very few paragraphs, it was apparent that to proceed I needed to read the blog posts from the last two weeks of her life. I read them late this afternoon. Doing so has stopped me in my tracks. I need time to let the feelings that have been stirred settle so that I can proceed, hopefully tomorrow.
I am grateful that when writing the posts, I chose to remove the filters and just say what was happening and how it felt. That allows me to remember what could so easily be lost or blocked to ease the pain. I am grateful for having plenty of specific, raw and unpasteurized information to help write something that rings true – because it is.
As grateful as I am, it is tough to go through it again. It felt strange to read posts written when I didn’t know exactly how things would play out, when I was wondering if things would turn back around and improve. It was hard to read my words of hope that we were not in the last days of her life. There were some things I wrote that had left my memory. Even reading one or two of the specifics didn’t trigger recall. What was especially startling was how fast things happened. There were moments of interaction with Mary Ann up to very near the end. When it was happening, we lost all sense of time. The good news is that the active process of dying went very quickly for Mary Ann. There were only two or three fleeting moments when she was agitated. Otherwise she remained remarkably peaceful. In almost forty years in the Ministry, I have been with many who had very distressing struggles with breathing and fluid buildup in the lungs in their last days and hours. She had none of that.
It was hard remembering the impact it was having on Lisa and Micah’s lives, their Spouses, Denis and Rebecca, the Grandchildren, Chloe, Abigail and Ashlyn. We were all gathered together at our house for the last ten days of her life. As I read the posts, it was apparent what a support we were to one another and how many others provided personal comfort, friendship, spiritual support as well as tangible help in the form of food coming at just the right time, a bouquet of flowers that brought with it a lift.
I won’t deny that I have wondered if I should be doing this, if I should be going through it all again. I have thought about letting go of the past and just getting on with life. To do so would seem to me to waste something too important. I realize that countless others have gone through what we went through. There is nothing special about our story. At the moment I need to tell the story again. I am not absolutely sure what good it might do anyone else to read it, but it is my hope that in Mary Ann’s and my story there are some gifts to be found for others who are seeking to live life to the fullest even in difficult circumstances.