November 16th, 2009:
It's been two days of remarkable synergy and decisions. Sunday, November 15th was my 63rd birthday, and I awoke at 5:49 in the morning with memories of being born some 63 years and 12 minutes ago. As some of you may know, I recalled what it was like to be born in a workshop a few years ago. Memories included, in this order:
1) I felt my body's shape for the first time because the different temperature gave me the sensations of having a head, trunk, limbs which I had not felt in utero. As my body formed in my head like a hologram...
2) I remembered how physical it was to be born. I had forgotten the strong flesh sensations of moving my body through my Mom's tissue and the intense work we did right next to each other to exit me from the womb.
3) Once completely out and body-focused, I realized that I had arrived. This birth had been a major goal for a long time, and my mind said, "I got here. This is how you get here, and I got here. Yes, I got here."
Having thought these thoughts, I headed into my first nap.
During the day of my birthday, I spent hours visiting with friends. Beth Pielert and I finalized the CD which will be shown on the day of my memorial service. Gaetano and Wendy and I did a slow walk through the agenda for the same memorial service. Afterward, I rested and felt content.
It was a different story walking into breakfast this morning. As I was moving through the living room here at Maitri a strong interior voice said: "Don't write the book about bringing communal groups together. You don't have time and you don't have the background. If you let this go, you will have more time to die easily and fully. Right now, you are in struggle about sleeping too much and not having enough time to complete this work. Give it up. Let it go." I have to say, that really upset because I have put so much hope and trust in the book as a creative effort. Also, my trip into the dining room was really difficult so I was really aware of how much my capacity to walk has diminished in the past few days. Even diminished from my birthday until today.
When my Social Worker Tova Green came for her visit at 11 this morning, I felt weepy and lost. It felt like I had no center, no creative reason for being. So we talked. I told her how much I wanted to express my knowledge of how communal groups could form energy centers that heightened intimacy and love between the terminally ill and their friends. She asked me what would be the consequences of letting go of this project. I told her that it would be a loss, a sadness that my knowing would not be shared more widely. Back and forth we went, examining the loss.
When it was almost time for Tova to leave, she handed me a book that she had promised to bring to me. The book was titled, Share the Care. As I scanned through the book I realized, this is it!! This is the book I had hoped to write. Only, it's already been written by people who really know what they are talking about. The part that I know the best are about setting up and creating a blog and the creation of a memorial CD. Those are rather esoteric chapters that I have already done myself for all of you. The parts I don't know so well about assembling small groups of terminally ill patients who determine what they want to accomplish and give each other support to complete, well, that's what's in the book that's already been written. I huge wave of relief poured through me from the top of my head through my toes.
Tova wondered what that felt like and I replied, "Relief. Huge relief. Now I can get out of the struggle I've felt for days about not being able to get more done on this effort. Now I can get on with my most important task which is to be released toward dying. That's what I want to be doing. I want to be dying without struggle. Dying with ease. Dying with as little as possible that's in my way." It's been a day where I feel like I've released myself back into quality of life in a major way. I am so grateful, so glad to be back where I can move forward to do my deepest work.