July 4, 2011

the needs of the dying

Do you know that I'm afraid to express my true thoughts and feelings?  What if everyone I care about runs away and leaves me all alone?  After all, you might not believe how hard this really is.  Thats why I need you to reassure me that you understand my suffering, and that you are willing to stay with me through the process of dying.  I need to know that you will listen to me, respect me, and accept me, no matter what sort of mood I am in on any particular day.
     I don't know if that first and second sentence was true for my brother.  Never said it to me.  There was definitely fear present.  In all of us.  Myself included.  Him, too.  I do know in the very beginning, he asked his wife to be strong for him.  Needed her to not let the emotions out in front of him.  Also expected it from my mom, now that I think about it.  Was he afraid that we might abandon him?  Wow.  I certainly hope not.  Did we give him enough reassurance?  Enough confidence in our love?  I believe so.
     But that third statement.  The one about how we as outsiders do not know how hard it truly is.  He said that to me.  Multiple times.  Usually with anger.  My dad, too.  His was with anger, too.  Definitely true.  Very true.  And they are right.  I don't know.  I don't have cancer.  And I never want to know what that's like.
     And the last part about acceptance?  We all need that one.  Regardless of living or dying.  Every single one of us.  No matter the depth of feeling.  Or, how dark the mood.  Every.  Single.  One of Us.

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