It is such a small leap for me I don’t know why it never occurred to me before.
I went to visit my mother this weekend. She has had dementia for more years than we know and she has been in long term care for almost three. Awhile ago I wrote about only understanding her journey from a soul perspective. This is becoming more true for me as she gets nearer to her transition.
During this visit, I sat on her bed with her, maintaining physical touch the whole time I was there. When she looked at me and we held eye contact, she smiled and even laughed. So did I. Sometimes with my tears also flowing. The rest of the time, I watched her lift her head to look very intently at things I could not see all around her room. It is clear to me that spirit in gathering although less clear to me when she will finally decide to let go of her physical body, but likely soon. We, her family, are becoming more ready as we walk this path her.
To get to the dementia ward in what everyone in the town calls “the Home”, you enter the front door of the building, walk a short corridor past the administration offices and enter through an electronically locked door into the main residential part of the building. You then have to walk down a long corridor to get to the dementia ward, behind yet another locked door.
As you enter the residential part of the building, you come upon people – old people and in some cases, really old people – sitting in wheel chairs or chairs – just sitting there for the most part, most nodding off. Those are the ones well enough to be sitting up. As you go down the corridor, bedrooms are on either side and in most of them someone is lying on a bed, oblivious to the rest of the world. Sleeping, snoring, unaware. And, as good as this place is – and I do believe it is one of the best, it smells of old people waiting to die, sometimes less so, sometimes more so. It is a hard corridor to walk with regularity, know the shape of these people’s lives have shifted so dramatically.
I have always thought of these people as waiting to die. We all know the only way people come out of long term care is in a coffin. This is where some of our population go to die – when their loved ones can no longer take care of them and, believe me, that is not an easy decision.
For some reason, with this visit with my mom, I had a little revelation and I don’t know why it never occurred to me before, but I’m glad it has now because it expands my awareness of what else just might be going on in these corridors.
My spiritual journey over the last dozen years or so has shown me pathways to altered consciousness, to spirit journeying, to spirit guides, angels and other entities. I am aware that it is possible to “travel” in dream states – sleeping and waking – and that much good and healing work can happen in these states of altered awareness and consciousness.
As I sat with my mother and observed her looking at that which she could see and I couldn’t, I all of a sudden became aware that her physical body might be old and weak and her brain injured, as they say at the Home, but her spirit or soul is strong. I began to wonder just where, how far and how often she may have been journeying while her physical body slept and that thought took me to all those sleeping bodies throughout the whole facility and a curiosity about where some of those souls might be journeying to while their physical bodies sleep. I’m sure some of them may well be wrestling with their own demons, so to speak, but whose to say that most of them aren’t off doing much needed soul work in ordinary and non-ordinary reality.
Then I could feel a bubble of light surrounding this Home. The notion that these beautiful souls might be making contributions to the world that most of us cannot see or understand made my own spirit more joyful. And now I hold my mother’s journey with an added degree of lightness and joy which I have no doubt she feels. She is journeying well and will continue to do so, I have no doubt. She is a great teacher for me. And I love her and she know that.
What a lovely, loving post Kathy…
Thank you for holding the space that you do, and receiving the insights that you do.
Thank you Josh. There is more to come as this journey continues. K
Kathy, thanks for this. I think that we believe that only when we are “young” and vital do we make any contributions. I think there are many different contributions to make and that we all serve some purpose that we may or may not understand at the time.
Great that you shared this Kathy! I have never thought about this in this way – good insight!
I know. In all those times I walked that corridor I also never thought about it until today,. My brother sent me a reference for a book that tells a similar story called: “Shades of Molly” ISBN # – 0-7388-3752-0.
He said, as I was reading your post about Mom journeying…it brought back these images that I had of reading a book about that very subject….but I could not think of who, where or when and then it dawned on me…this book! It is about a dear old soul by the name of Molly…full of life and spirit…however only in her spirit not her physical body…it is about when other spirits come and visit her and she then learns how to leave physical body while it sleeps and all of the mischief and problem solving she does. It is funny at times how she almost misses getting back into her physical body before the nursing staff discover that she is not waking…as she must be in her physical body to wake…anyway…just very interesting…reading that book about 4 years ago…reading your post…remembering the story…and now thinking of mom…and wondering what mischief is she getting into when we think she is sleeping…LOL!
Absolutely beautiful. Just imagining the healing that these experienced souls are doing while appearing to need healing of their own…a true circle of healing.
Beautiful Kathy, Thank you for sharing this life-and-beyond awareness journey with us. This is a tender time for you and your family.
Your thoughts of the transition process are much like mine, resulting from the death of my mother 8 years ago. I thought then that she was “seeing” another dimension, and her soul had moved on before her body. She too had stopped eating about 3 weeks before her breathing stopped. A stroke prevented her from verbally communicating with us, but she knew we were there. I think most of her time was spent “communicating” with souls in the next dimension, since it was obvious that she was never alone.
Our faith and our love makes all of life precious.
Pingback: Tis the Season of Joy — And Sorrow « ShapeShift
Lovely and so lovingly expressed. I will never see an “old folks” home the same way again. Thank you K.
Thanks Jean-Yves. My mother has been a big teacher for me throughout this journey. The conversations with my own children have shifted pretty dramatically since my mother first went into long term care. I also will never see “old folks” home the same way again either. In fact, it has given me an even greater appreciation for the mysticism of life. Maybe I’ll write about that sometime soon.
Pingback: Death and Dying – Lessons I Learned From My Mother « ShapeShift
Pingback: Human Tragedy Story Often Obscures Soul Journey Perspective « ShapeShift
Pingback: Tis the Season – Of Joy and Sorrow « Kathy Jourdain
Pingback: Dementia and Alzheimers: A Fate Worse Than Death? – Embracing the Stranger in Me
Pingback: A Decade of Transitions and Transformations – Embracing the Stranger in Me