The Art of Spiritual Midwifery

Life’s final journey- the long and winding road to that city of Ending and New Beginning. I cannot begin to articulate what I have experienced so deeply, so viscerally, and so profoundly in the last four days. I have sat under the teaching of some of the finest teachers in the Hospice/Palliative care program. Not all of these teachers are professional- some of the best have been the patients I have cared for.
I realize that so much of what goes on in a given day is obscured by my inability to perceive- those gifts and relationships so dear, so devastatingly precious, bursting out around me and cloaking me with every beauty imaginable- yet my distractedness with the minutia of task and tool dims my vision and numbs my senses. I am running so fast, so furiously that I fail to see through that gossamer veil that becomes ever so much thinner with time – that separates the reality of heaven from the dream that is my life on earth.
I was challenged by the story of a woman who had had a near-death experience- a “typical” leaving the body-on-the-operating-room-table type of scenario. As she was caught up and sent plummeting through that expansive tunnel of light, she heard a voice clearly asking her “have you had enough joy?”. Then she heard a second question, “is there anything unfinished that you need to give?”. Those two questions changed her life, and I find that I cannot set those questions on a shelf and walk away unaffected. What will my response be? With God’s help.

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