I was thinking of that word liminality again today. Strange how you make connections and try to find meaning, without even thinking about it.
I was reading about the progression of liver cancer. Maybe not the best thing to do, especially before we go see the oncologist, but I wanted to know. Nancy already seems to think it’s pretty far along.
What I ended up reading were narratives of those who had lost people. They described some of the symptoms, how they knew it was getting closer to the end, but the thread wasn’t really about the symptoms. It was about loss and dying. And many of them described something very similar: the dying patient, losing touch with the real world, and eventually becoming preoccupied with the idea of having to go somewhere. More than one person described the loved one as actually trying to pack for a trip. And all of these people said the same thing – that they had to eventually tell the other person it was okay to leave.
Tough to read. Some of the people writing these narratives just seemed extraordinary to me, how they could acknowledge everything so openly, and how they were really trying (maybe in the only really useful way) to help others deal with something incredibly difficult. I hope I can handle it – and help my mom – with as much grace. I hope we all can.
I keep thinking of that: trying to pack for a trip. Somewhere to go.