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Goodbye, but not Farewell

  This is a condensed version of the Eulogy that I read out at Mum’s funeral yesterday. It completes my series of blogs about my journey with Mum in life and in death. Enjoy! Make sure you’ve read Part 1, Part 2 and Part 3 first... Nothing ever prepares us for a moment like this. Although we could all see that Mum was slowly declining, I never allowed myself to think of “that moment” when she’d leave her body and spread her wings. I wanted to think that she’d be here forever, never changing, always there for us, as she has always been. And I hoped that by not thinking of it, maybe it would never happen. Yet here we...

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Tears that Purify, Tears that Heal

If you’ve been following my journey over the last 2 blogs, you will know that my Mum has been preparing to leave her body. Where I thought that it may still be weeks or months, death came to visit far swifter than that. 10 days after I shot her with my arrow of truth and told her that I love her (read “I killed my Mum”), she was gone. She had spent her last 48 hours firstly in the Emergency Department at her local hospital. The doctors ran all sorts of tests, which showed simply that her body was shutting down. Her blood pressure was very low, not enough oxygen was getting to her organs, and her kidneys were inflamed....

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The Death Walk

In last week’s blog, I shared about how I killed my Mum. I shot her with an arrow of truth, from my heart to hers….and it hit its mark. But it wasn’t her blood that I was feeling – it was my own. How do we watch someone who was once so strong and independent and dignified, become a walking corpse? How do we watch that, and not feel something moving deeply within our own Spirit. Watching Death begin its slow and grim dance for someone we love is not easy. This is powerful change at its most visceral level. I’m not saying that a swift death is necessarily easier. Unexpected death is a shock in its own right, and...

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I Killed My Mum

Last Friday, I killed my Mum. Not literally. She’s doing that under her own terms. But I shot an arrow at her with such focus and intention, that it penetrated through all the layers of mist and reached its target – her heart. The arrow was my words, conveyed with such powerful intensity that they would have penetrated even the thickest stone. Have you ever had that experience, either for yourself or witnessing it in someone else? So often, our mouth is disconnected from our Spirit. We talk – our lips flap around in the wind like a bird in flight, relaying our stories, our feelings, our opinions – but they are thrown into the wind with such little force,...

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Too Soon Old, Too Late Smart

After serving as a surgeon in Vietnam at the height of the war, Dr. Gordon Livingston returned to the U.S. and began work as a psychiatrist. In that capacity, he listened to hundreds of people talk about their lives – what works, what doesn’t, and the limitless ways that people find to be unhappy. He is also a parent twice bereaved; in one thirteen-month period he lost his eldest son to suicide, and his youngest to leukemia. Out of a lifetime of experience, Gordon Livingston decided to write a series of beautifully calibrated essays entitled ‘Too Soon Old, Too Late Smart’. These essays underscore that while there may be no escaping who we are, it is never too late to move beyond  loss, misfortune, or...

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