I went to a healing service with my son, hoping he would be healed of his eczema & sensitivity to dairy products as I'm fed up with having to cook different foods for each family member due to either food allergies or simple food fads.
Anyway, the person giving the talk (J.) started giving a spiel about his dying Grandfather & how he had just sat with him for 36 hours & doing nothing else as he drifted in & out of consciousness. Eventually J. went home & his Grandfather died the next morning. He was gutted.
He then proceeded to tell the congregation that God had told him how important it had been to just sit with his Grandfather. J. went on to say that this was nothing to do with what he was going to talk about but he felt there was someone here in the congregation that needed to hear this. God was telling them that what they also did was very important - just sitting with the dying person.
I immediately felt stunned, gob-smacked. I knew this message was for me. I had only ever wondered why I had not done more once before & had forgotten about it. Now it resurfaced. It felt so magical, like the candle burning in one of my recent posts (see Daytime ramblings of painful anniversaries). The connection with God, with my husband, the personal message for me out of the whole congregation. But why now? I guess now is as good as any time. I can lay this ghost (thought) to rest.
As my husband had a tumor at the base of his spinal column, bit by bit of him was packing up very rapidly. By this time he was bed bound & couldn't move his legs. In fact the nurses had been instructed not to move him back up the bed when he had slid downwards. I guess any sudden movement would have killed him & they had to cushion his feet with towells instead.
I held his hand on one occasion & he seemed to take his hand off immediately. I thought he didn't like the sensation. Maybe he could sense my hand was there but he was going numb & he didn't like how this felt. His body was shutting down. So I respected him. I could only be guided by him.
I didn't think to say anymore to him as I had said all I needed to say at the time to him a couple of days before. I had to ask my Mother-in-Law to leave so I could say what I needed to in private.
I guess I was very conscious that my M-I-L was around trying to sleep in a nearby relatives room. We were taking it in turns to sit by my husband's side. She had already done the previous night. Tonight was my turn but we both wanted to be there when he died. I had to know when to go & wake her at the right time, otherwise he may have died without her being there. It felt a lot of responsibility to be taking onto my shoulders.
So for ages I sat all alone. How I hate death & dying. Here was I facing it all alone. I didn't think to pray to God. I didn't feel his presence. I was just fixed on my husband's every breath - sometimes his chest would rise & fall. Other times his stomach seemed to be doing all the breathing.
But when I was worried or thought he was uncomfortable, I went to call the nurses. I didn't even buzz the alarm but crept down the corridor so as not to disturb the other patients.
The nurses were very good. They gave us space & privacy. But they quickly came to help when requested - such as to use suction to clear his airway as one of the last things to go was the ability to swallow. They guided me when to go & wake my M-I-L up. That helped relieve the pressure. She was able to see him through from birth to his death aged only 41.
I am so grateful to J. for this message, in church. I obviously did need to hear it. I don't normally come to the evening service. As I said before, it was only because of my son that I had come. So it must have been inspired by God, even orchestrated by him. I felt very comforted by this, how God can single me out & speak to me at this time.
I found it simply amazing how God arranged for J. to use his experience to speak to me & for me to actually be there to hear it.