|Maenad memories and random ramblings
||[Mar. 11th, 2003|07:03 pm]
Time has always been my enemy.|
Time slips away, quickly, and soon I find that there's none left for things that I wanted to do... or, that too much time has slipped away before I did something important, like email a sick friend.
I guess, though, that sometimes things work out okay.
There was a woman, an old friend of my mother-in-law. She was dying of bowel cancer. Chris, her mother, and I were going to visit her.
It was the first time that I ever tried to work magic on another human being. Don't ask me why I did it, or how the thought came into my head, but, I tried to reach her spirit, and tell her that it was okay... it was okay to leave as soon as she was ready.
I remember that they ground her morphine pills, and she rubbed the powder into her gums... I remembered feeling strange at how routine it was.
When I was leaving, I made sure I looked at her face, I made sure I smiled at her, and I made sure I hugged her (gently) for longer than I knew I needed to. I made sure that, as best as I could, that she knew that I cared, and that I found her as lovable as I could find any person I'd just met.
People who are dying sometimes starve for touch; people don't even realize that they're shying away as if the disease is contagious, you see.
She was dead less than 24 hours later. And I guess it's a 'confession' when I say that I think I had something to do with that. Yes, I think it's possible - though perhaps I would *only* say this on the anniversary of another friend's death - that I did manage to reach her spirit and say "really; it's okay. As soon as you're ready, it's okay to go."
It's interesting; I learned about Anna/Maenad while drunk on wine. It's *really* crazy, but I told the friend I was speaking to on the phone that I didn't think her time was up yet. I had a feeling that we weren't near the end of the path.
What's weird, though, is that it was more-or-less chance that I learned of her problems. She'd emailed a bunch of people, and asked them if they wanted to be part of a mailing list. I, of course, forgot to reply immediately. If I hadn't been talking to this friend, I wouldn't have learned.
Like I said, time is my enemy; I should have acted faster, so I couldn't forget. Then again, even coming in late, I think I did some good.
I went back through my Eudora Light outbox... my last email to Anna was sent on the second. The first words - no points for guessing :-) - were "hey, beautiful". The last, besides my signature, were "I love you; I hope you can always remember that."
I ended it with one of my favorite sign offs: "Love always,".
It's got two meanings, you see... "(you have my)Love always" and "Love (as in: "be loving") always".
Boy, this is rambling, isn't it?
Tonight, I'm following the example of some others, and I had kielbasa and saurkraut, with extra garlic, onion, and apple added. It's as close to 'Polish' food as I could get for her.
I'm remembering another fine meal I ate, though, with her, during my drive to Washington. I revealed one of my gifts to her; a Callahanian who needed money was my "Secret Santa" that year, and I sent what money I could spare, which was enough, I'm sure, to fill a couple of Christmas stockings and possibly pick up some niceties for a Christmas dinner.
I don't like to talk about that kind of thing too much; it's too much like bragging, sometimes, but I realized it would make her happy, so I did, and it *did* make her happy... more than I could have realized.
It turns out she was afraid that the giver of money had been a certain Mr. Tennant, and was immensely relieved to find out that it wasn't him.
Those of you who don't know, that Mr. Tennant decided to take offense that a woman dared disagree with him while posting from a government hosted site, costing the government precisely $0.0000. (those extra 0s are to add the proper number of significant figures...) How dare she waste taxpayer money! So, without caring about what her circumstances might be, he took action.
I told him what her circumstances were; his response was to offer to reach for his checkbook. I told him that cash was not the problem; what she needed couldn't be bought.
When I think of what good he could have accomplished with nothing more than a humble apology, it makes me sad to realize that his first and only thought was cash.
I believe more in magic now, and I think Anna may have visited me today, to remind me of magic, and to remind me that I need to keep trying to work what magic I can long distance. Though it's frequently delivered through nothing more than a computer keyboard and a lot of caring, I hope it will always be able to do good, the way it was able to do good for Anna