Monday, August 6, 2012

Songs Of Joy

Several days ago, I held a woman's left hand as she lay dying, and her middle daughter held her right hand.   The other sisters had decided not to come that day because they couldn't face seeing their mother die.    The mother gasped and her daughter began to flutter with concern.    As I always do, I talked to them both, in the form of a prayer, telling them not to be afraid, telling them they were loved, telling them that the sisters would be okay, telling them that they were safe. When the mother had breathed her last, I stayed with the daughter until her sisters arrived, and then I prayed with them all, promising them that their mother was okay.    

 Later the daughter told me this story: shortly after I left the room, the three of them heard the melodic stroke of a harp. First they blamed one another, believing that one of them had brought a cell phone into the room, but they soon ascertained that there was no phone.   Finally they agreed that the sound had come over the loudspeaker, and that it must be our way of announcing that there had been a death.   

They later found out from a nurse what I already knew.   We don't have a loudspeaker, and the harp sound did not come from us.     

I don't offer any explanation for the sound or its source.   But whatever it was, and wherever it came from, it made all the difference. The sisters stopped judging one another and themselves for what they had or hadn't done for their mom, the pain of their grief was a little less sharp, and they found themselves laughing at the way, they were convinced, their mom had found a way to reach back to give them one last sign of her love.


spindelmaker said...

You´re making my eyes tear up with your lovely story.

Kim@Snug Harbor said...

Talk about goosebumps!

Snowbird said...

What a neat story. I can't even imagine having your job but maybe this was not just for the sisters but for you too.

Erin said...




Kaybe said...

I heart this too. xo

sue in mexico mo said...

Last fall my cousin and I sat and visited as her mother, my aunt, died. I think our soft chatter helped her take her last breath knowing her daughter was not alone. As I saw her take a breath and then not take another breath a great softness filled the room. It is hard to explain to others, but we knew everything was good.

Bless you for what you do.

SewCalGal said...

What a special story. My heart goes out to this family, but also to you for being their for them. What a wonderful way to help others.