Restless Passage

rustlyeeA gentleman friend that some of us were working with this past week passed late last night. I was with him a few nights ago and was scheduled to be with him tonight (Thurs) and tomorrow night. I received word a few moments ago that I did not need to go over to the care facility. One of my companions was with him last evening until around 9pm and noticed some of the last signs. It was a few hours later that he left us.

We never met this man when he was awake and alert. We only knew him in his twilight sleep – mumbling, gurgling, and trying to reach for something or get out of bed. All of us noticed how restless he was in his disturbed sleep.

The social worker said he was “spiritually restless.” I asked her what she meant. She told me that quite often individuals, like our friend, who do not have a religious or spiritual background worry about dying. Just before our friend had lost his ability to communicate several days ago, he told our social worker that he didn’t want to be left alone. He didn’t have family or friends to be with him. That is when we were called in – to sit with him and read poetry, talk, or, as I often do, read Bible. I’ll say again – these places are sacred.

Anyway, my companion noticed last evening before she left that he had calmed down considerably. She put the nursing staff on alert and, sure enough, a few hours later he was gone.

I hope he found some kind of peace at the very end. God will sort it all out. I mourn the loss this morning.

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