HUG Corner: Thought for the Week

Location : North Houston

Healing After Loss (Martha Whitmore Hickman)

"Nothing could stop you.
Not the best day. Not the quiet. Not the ocean rocking.
You went on with your dying."

-Marie Strand

How they went on about their business, the dying. They knew we were there. They loved us, wished to spare us pain. Yes, they would miss us. But their eyes were already on another landscape, and we saw them pulling away.

Now that they are gone, do we feel abandoned?

No reason to. They love us still. They have reached a destination.

Do we need their permission to let them go? Surely they gave us that in dying.

Perhaps they need our permission to be fully at ease with their departure. A friend tells how, immediately after the death of a loved uncle, he felt the uncle's presence in the hall with them him, and the question. "Is it all right to go, Buddy [the family's name for my friend]?" And he said, "Yes, it's all right," and felt the atmosphere change, a kind of peace and tranquility set in.

Death is a mystery in which the living are bystanders, but a mystery to be trusted.

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