Whilst what follows may be very much contrary to ‘normal’ business-blog form, I feel that my blog-silence needs to be explained.
My mother, Marjorie – Madge to her many friends, passed away just three days ago after a three month ‘experience’ of cancer. For her it was neither a fight nor a struggle – it was a burden and an inconvenience – as well as a lesson and (dare I say this?) a gift.
I was fortunate enough to be able to spend all of January with her, to care for her and to talk with her – and often to just ‘be’ with her. In that time I believe that I saw that lesson, glimpsed that gift.
Despite her frail condition (she was 84 years old) with failing eye-sight and general weariness brought on by the cancer and other chronic conditions, Madge was positive, optimistic for the world (yet aware of her own fate) and demonstrably able to enjoy any kindness shown her; or any thought, suggestion, image or sound that might please her. She never once complained – not of the pain, the indignity or the seemingly endless diet of pills that her Doctors had prescribed and which she struggled to swallow every four hours. She had cleared a path through any negativity, any thing, notion or event that might interfere with her conscious embrace of remaining life and of impending death. She attained a state of grace, of calm, of acceptance of the inevitable – she was able to look into it and to see that her soon-to-be-realised death was but another life-experience.
Death came, mercifully, in her sleep – her breathing became so shallow it could no longer sustain her. She tapered off. Gently.