Yesterday I sat, for the fourth time in my life, at the bedside of a dying person. It is always a soul stirring experience.
An elderly friend, who has had her challenges physically these past few years was at the local care center after a fall last month, and we got news that she was soon to be leaving the earth. I hurried over and sat with her for the next several hours. She was unaware of our presence, and was not conscious at all, and yet I always feel as though people should not be alone when they are making their transition to the next world. I don't know why, I just feel that way. Perhaps its because my medical training informs me that the hearing is the last thing to go, and I tried to assure her verbally every so often that we were there, she was not alone, and it was fine for her to go to sleep and rest whenever she was ready.
I will miss this lady's presence in my life - she was my last connection to my mother as they were good friends and I always felt as though when I was with her I was with Mom as well. It was a comforting thing to talk with her and be in her presence for that reason alone. And since I've known her all my life it was like saying goodbye to a little piece of my history as well.
It was bittersweet to be sure. And yet, my heart was not heavy with it. Just very content with the way it's supposed to be.