Sunday, December 14, 2008

A pause.

This week among the hustle of preparations and parties and trees that remained bare...
I stopped. Time stopped. As I was witness to that vapourous

blurry world between life and death. Twice.

A particularly arduous birth I attended mid week (30 hours) gave me pause, reminding me of the heroic fight a mother and her babe have to come into this world.

Existing at that moment between Birth and Death is a fine line.

A line that must be crossed.
Each baby and mother wafts in the vapourous world for just a moment, before crossing that line to life. I always feel at a birth, my most sacred job is to be witness to, and protect that space.


Early this morning, I found myself at a good friends home...cleaning up resuscitation equipment bags left by EMT's...finishing cooking a dinner they were in the middle of preparing...protecting the space,

while a once dynamic and beautiful father of four lay in the ICU, attended to by family,
wafting in that same vaporous thinly veiled world between life and death.

His struggle just as hard.

He collapsed the night before, as they were preparing eggplant parmesan.

He rode his bike to work, swam in the ocean daily, was a vegetarian. Was in his forties.

He never revived. A machine is breathing for him as his family comes from all over the country to make their peace.

Alone in their home, as I swept the floor, my phone rang...the birth mother from earlier in the week called for help and support...the fierce jilting, I am alive, sound of a babies cry in the background.

"The wailing of the newborn infant is mingled with the dirge for the dead.” ~ Lucretius

Tonight, as we finally decorated our tree...amongst music and chatter of kids, as I placed the tiny leather baby shoes tied with a ribbon of my youngest...and the long ago made ornament of a can lid with glitter and a doily and a faded young picture of my 19 year old son...

I cried.
For life. For Death...For that thin moment in between.

35 comments:

The Woman Behind the Words said...

What a beautiful post and what an already-emotionally charged time of year to experience a birth or a death. I am so sorry for your friends.

Lady of the Mote said...

((((HUGS))))
prayers for your friends.

My Decor Style said...

I am so sorry for your friends and happy for the new life that has joined this world. My prayers go out to the family for their loss. You have a wonderful way with words and expression. Your post hit home.

Ma'dame French said...

Hugs and prayers for this difficult time~~French

suzette said...

(((Linda)))

hello gorgeous said...

Beautiful and heartbreaking and happy and poignant. Like life.

So, so sorry for you and your friends. Hugs and prayers for all. They are lucky to have you there to help pick up the pieces...

Ivy Lane said...

Praying for your friends and for you. Beautiful, thought provoking post.

Lisa said...

(((Linda))) What a beautiful, poignant post about life and death; blessings and pain rolled up into one big ball. It brought tears to my eyes. Today my oldest, dearest friend is burying her 40 year old brother; so it seems especially timely for me to read this now. Thank you.

Pat@Back Porch Musings said...

Oh Linda, this post is so very beautiful and bittersweet.

I am so sorry about this young man. But joyous in the birth of a precious child.

We've lost sweet loved ones; our precious Elijah 2 years ago, J's brother, at 23 and his father 2months later, the same year...all at holiday time. All still live, in our hearts

My heart breaks for this young family. My thoughts are with them and you, as their friend.

Sweet thoughts for the young mother and new baby.

Fifi Flowers said...

LOVE the FUN, bright and colourful tree... love this time of year! ENJOY! Fifi

Stephanie said...

Linda, what a beautiful post. To experience the highs and lows of this world in the span of a few days.

My thoughts are with you and your friends.

Ms. Tee said...

Oh, I'm so sorry about your friend, Linda. My prayers are with you and his family. {{Hugs}}

Linda at Lime in the Coconut! said...

Oh. Thank you all. i transfer your thoughts and hopes to her and her boys. I spent the day with them at the hospital...so much support and family. But today is the youngest childs 12th birthday...so they will not take him off the ventillator today. Tomorrow will be the hard work and decisions to stop the life support.

I am awed by their strength.

Thank you....for them.

Pamela Terry and Edward said...

My thoughts are with you. So many monumental experiences in such a short time. Blessings your way.

Joyce said...

Linda- this post is beautiful as I write the tears spill. Your words are so golden and most of all your friendship to both friends are priceless. You definitely get it.
Life does change for one who stands at the doorway of life and death. I was one.
There are tears of joy when a baby is born and tears of sadness when we say our "until we met agains" to our loved ones.
I will include your friends in my prayers... xoxo
Thank you Linda!! xoxo

Millie said...

Such a tender post Linda reminding me of life's tenuous hold on all of us. But what a privelege to share these moments & be able to offer love & support to these folk when they need it the most. You have a kind & caring heart.
Millie ^_^

Susanne49 said...

What a beautiful and touching post, Linda! Thanks for sharing your experienced time in between. I love your blog!

Sue's Daily Photography

Melissa Lewis - Off The Wall said...

Linda, you were pulling at my heartstrings with this one. I was determined to enjoy the holidays this year, and not think about not having any children ( as I usually do this time of year). As I read this post, I am reminded to be content and to truly be grateful for how rich I am.

Praying for your friends.

Bridget said...

A smile of joy for the new life and a tear of sadness for your friend's husband. This is the second blog that I have read this evening with very sad news. Another blogger I know unexpectedly lost her husband this morning. I pray that both of these women will find the strength from God and their families to get through this very difficult time.

Suzann @ Lavender and Roses said...

I have tears streaming down my cheeks and goosebumps on my arms. This was such a
wonderful post. So touching, so hear-breaking,
so true, so important. Thank you.

Michelle said...

Oh my gosh, Linda. What a barrel of emotions!! Lots of hugs. I wlil pray for you and your friends.

Mango Gal said...

I'm so sorry. Best wishes and many hugs to you and your friends.

mari said...

to be reminded that we exist on that line, in that grey place- between death and life, as we turn the dial, smell the air, brush hair or feed pets- we are always there, but to be made so succinctly aware of that place is a gift. Hold on to the gift and thankyou Linda for sharing such powerful emotions. My heart and prayers go to her and her family...

Patricia Gray said...

Seasons Greetings to you!!
My thoughts are with you.
BTW I love your Blog Header.

Karen-OH said...

So eloquent and so heartfelt. I feel your joy, I feel your pain. What a gift you are to both these families and your own. May you be richly blessed for your love.
Peace to you this Christmas!
Karen

~ Lisa ~ said...

I am so sorry for your friends' loss. I will be praying for the family, especially as they celebrate the holidays without their daddy and husband. I am so sorry.

Laura @ the shorehouse. said...

Oh...what a moving post. My heart breaks for people at times like this, and what they say is true...it's always hardest at the holidays.

Eloise said...

Oh, Linda, what a poignant post. My heart breaks for your friend and her family. What a terrible loss, and at Christmastime yet.

I'm so glad that baby is doing well. A good counterpoint for the week you're having.

Hugs and prayers to you.

dec0r8or said...

Oh, Linda, you have such a way with words. I'm so sorry about your friend. THanks for making me take a moment to be thankful for all that I have, and to not dwell on what is missing this holiday season. ((((Linda)))

gatorslp said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
gatorslp said...

As this rollercoaster of events unfolds in your midst, sending hearfelt thoughts and prayers your way.

monart said...

We have a friend with a 19 month old baby boy, with a brain tumor, on Chemo treatments, and my niece's 18 yr old boyfriend struggles for life as cancer takes it, going through radiation. One of of our closest friends die 5 years ago, 4 months after they diagnosed him with a rare form of cancer. But,,, :) My daughter can not have children, she and her husband after a years wait, received the BLESSING of an adopted precious daughter. This Christmas my 16 month old Grand Daughter lit up my home brighter than any strand of lights any where on earth with LIGHT AND LIFE, as we celebrated the Birth of the Christ child, JESUS. I pray for your friends and ask our Lord that they may be at peace in in their Hearts and Celebrate the loved ones they will miss, and the life God gives us to know, and the time we shared with them. It is sad, but can be happy if we count it unto the Lord and BELIEVE He has our lives in His Hands.

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