Friday, January 8, 2010
A 94 Year Old Woman Discusses Death
I deliver books to the housebound as a volunteer with the Outreach Program of our local library. I had a new lady on my route last week and I spent some time visiting with her. She lives with her son and daughter-in-law and has a small section of the house to herself. We talked about books, her family and death. She asked me if it was a sin to pray to die soon. I'm guessing she felt safe asking me this question because I was a new and anonymous person in her life. In the short time we were together I surmised that she is loved by her family and that she loves them as well. She told me a story about her granddaughter who had given her the complete set of Ann of Green Gables to read. She told me about her son bringing her the newspaper each morning and she told me about a home health worker who helps her shower and sometimes watches a movie with her. Her favorite is The Secret Garden. So, I chose my words carefully and told her that I understood why she would think about dying and that I was sure it was not a sin to speak to God about something that important, but then I told her that I was sure her family would miss her and that she is surely a blessing in their lives. I told her that she is a lovely, articulate and caring woman who I enjoy talking with. She is someone I will look forward to seeing each week. She still has wisdom to share and a purpose to her life even if it is merely to allow others to give more fully of themselves.