The Wait for Mourning

May 28, 2012 at 6:26 am

My grandmother, the woman I cherish more than any other, the one who took my wounded toddler heart and gave it a reason to keep beating… she’s slipping away from this world.

I’ve been dreading this all of my life… the day that Grandma leaves us. I remember having a nightmare when I was in kindergarten. I had dreamed that Grandma had died, and my dad couldn’t console my weeping. I felt utterly horrified. How could I live without her?

But now, miraculously, rather than despair, I am full of peace.  I told her on the phone a few days ago, “It’s OK. You can go.” And I felt her saying good-bye as she told me over and over, “I love you. I love you.”

I wish I could be there with her now as she lingers before exiting, in that sacred place between life and death, surrounded by those who so deeply adore her.

I went searching tonight for a poem about birth and death, something that might capture what I’m feeling. But I didn’t find anything. So I decided to write my own.

The Wait for Mourning

She has pulled inside,
And they wait,
And watch,
And whisper,
Offer their hands in love,
Offer their love in words,
Guardians of her space.
Oh how I long to be there
With her,
With them,
Doulas to the dying.