For no apparent reason, this came to me today during meditation. To those who read more into things than is written, let me repeat: For NO apparent reason.
Our wedding vows were a far cry from your traditional sacramental promises to… Oh, who am I kidding? I haven’t the slightest clue what the rest of the world is promising to do.
All I know is that when Tom and I said “I do” we promised to love and honor each other as a whole being. Our promise was one of support. We would simply be there, supporting each other, until death. Because this promise was with the understanding that life continues well after the death of the body, our promise was for this lifetime only.
We would not restrain or restrict the other’s growth physically, mentally, emotionally, or spiritually. Our promise was to each other, no one else. Not the church, Not God, just each other. I guess this was the reason we did not invite the family or friends to witness the event. It was private.
Private — like the birth of our boys, and his death.
The family had come, two at a time, to mend ways and bid farewell to Tom in his body. As a spirit, this was just another step — one that, in those very vows we’d shared 15 short years prior, I’d promised to support. But it wasn’t easy.
The morning of his death, I woke at about 4 am to hear his constant moans and groans coming from downstairs. Thanks to a dear friend, and a dose of ambien, I’d managed to get 4 solid hours of sleep. I was energized, which was good for I knew the end would soon be coming.
Initially, his moans unnerved me. The doses of morphine we’d been putting in his cheeks did not appear to be absorbing anymore and the supply was running dangerously low. I called the call service and made a request a change to a subcutaneous infusion. Then I sat with him and realized that these moans were just the way he was moving through the pain. They were very similar to the moans I made during my labor with BoBo.
A short time later the family rushed off to school and airports, leaving me alone with Tom for the first time in days. No longer able to speak or move, he was helpless: completely at my disposal.
I spoke to him with complete assurance that he could hear me. I gently touched his shoulders and lead him through a meditation as if he could, and would, follow along. Me leading, instead of him, was definitely not the way we did things. I pushed aside all considerations that I was doing it wrong and just went with it. Of course, I made it short and sweet — just in case. Then after his moaning had stopped, I sat by his side, told him one last time that I loved him, and gave him the go-ahead to leave his body, me, and the kids behind. I promised that we’d be okay.
The infusion never made it to the house, but it no longer seemed to matter. When his moaning started up again, I gave him a dose of morphine and ativan. He died a half hour later — ending his fight with nothing more than a single tear. And although I never heard the words I longed to hear just one last time, somehow I knew that, in his own way, he’d said it.