This past week or so I've been talking with a co-worker about his mother's imminent passing. She passed yesterday. She was 88, she had significant health issues, and she was ready to go. She was able to communicate this clearly to her son, and he let her know that it was okay to let go. Still, days passed and it took some time before she did.
I spoke with him Monday morning, asked him how it was going. He told me she was ready, but just hadn't let go yet, maybe hadn't quite figured out how. I was struck, after this conversation, and oddly comforted, by the similarities between waiting to be born and waiting to die.
When a pregnant woman's time is near, we get ready, and we watch and we wait, and we try not to pester too much, but we don't get to know the when of it, or understand the why of the timing. And maybe that is part of the beauty and mystery of it all.
In these past few weeks the news has been full of the passing of some prominent people and I find myself thinking of the not well known who come and go everyday, unremarked except by those who love them.
And I find myself wanting to hold life, hold it all, more dearly, and simultaneously more loosely, and I don't know how, or if I'm even sure what this means. And so I breathe in, breathe out, and am grateful to just be here, still.