The Gift of Release

As I peered through the kitchen door, I could see her sitting in her favorite chair in the family room. As I entered, gradually she attempted to stand. I told her to sit still; I would come to her. “No, I want to get a real hug from you.”

This should have been telling. And if not, then the length and completeness of the hug should have alerted me to a change in today’s schedule. I had thought that I was coming for a demonstration. It was just two days ago that she let me know that a friend of mine was also going to be there. I had encouraged her to meet with my Ayer Vedic practitioner and Sun-Moon Dancer for advice with nutritional supports and potential pain reduction plan. When they met, it seemed that they had been connected in some other time. They continued to see each other, more socially than professionally, over the past year.

She moved out of the hug and said, “I don’t think this is going to be a demonstration. I woke up this morning, in extreme pain and feeling miserable. I’m done. I’m ready. You don’t have to stay if you are uncomfortable.”

I was the one who had found the organization [FEN], when my friend seemed so close to crossing over 16 months prior. She was in so much pain and even the simplest self-care seemed beyond her. This had been such a difficult time for someone who had always been active and involved in life. She was too ill to attend meetings, so I went to collect information, gather materials, and explain life-completion elements. I feared that she would lose so much of her abilities that she would be beyond the point of helping herself.

She had had some reprieve in function and mobility, yet the chronic pain from five, to seven, to nine vertebrae continued to fracture and collapse. Her greatest fear was becoming totally incapacitated and at the mercy of others.

I, like many of her friends, was grateful for the functional changes we observed. She and I talked about the confusion she was feeling with improved mobility, despite no significant change in her quality of life or her pain level. She spoke to me about feeling her connection with Spirit slipping away, so while I visited, we did more ceremony, drumming, and chanting. This would be uplifting at the moment, but as with many individuals with neurophysiological issues, it would wear her out for a number of days, and with fatigue and lack of distraction, the pain was most often unbearable.

So here we were, and the time had come for her leaving. The final dance began, as the two of us helped her into her living room, which had become her ceremony room in the last few months. The Senior Guide and his assistant arrived, were greeted, and ushered into the space. Introductions and some initial instructions were exchanged. These two individuals readily became part of our ceremonial circle, joining ours in this most auspicious occasion. My friend spoke of memories and elements completed. She played her drum and chanted the Sound Beings into this sacred space. Then she sang a Sufi song, asking us to remember her as loving us. Tears flowed as judgment was released and all that remained was Love. It all seemed so easy, so gentle, and so final. She was at last at peace. 

We were very grateful for the work and wisdom of Final Exit Network.

 — A Friend

(From the FEN Fall 2018 Magazine)