Navigators and Awakenings

Angie Warren

Shortly after my mom passed away, I had written something on my Instagram account, referring to mothers and daughters and really, just a stream of consciousness.

A young mother commented that she appreciated the insight, as she was navigating the journey of preparing her small daughters for her own passing.

She was dying of cancer.

This woman took my breath away, that simple sentence, a voice beckoning to be heard and understood. Here I was writing about losing my mother - when she, she was preparing to be the one lost.

She was crying out for a navigator, begging someone to tell her how does one do this? To tell your children your time is limited, show them as much love as a lifetime deserves, but that isn't something she had to give, a lifetime.

Within weeks, her terminal illness took her.

Last evening I received yet another, similar note. Again, all breath was sucked from my lungs. Another young mother, more small children. Another woman navigating, still more begging. Another lifetime of questions, with even less answers.

I walked in circles after that, the kitchen my well worn path. Feeling a range of emotion, feeling crazed within my own mind, the fairness of it all, or lack there of, when it dawned on me. I remembered something my mother said often during her own battle with a terminal illness.

"Why not me?"

And there it was. It isn't fair. Not a bit of it. But none of us is immune to it, to the dying. No one is safe from it. I can allow sorrow for others and fear for my own fate to swallow me whole, or I can remember I have this day, today. I'm here. We're here. Let's relish in that.

I did what came naturally to me at that point. My little family circled round our table, waiting for me, so I set the phone down and joined them. We laughed and told stories, forks on plates making the music of our dinner.

And it was enough.

I've been changed because of my loss, and I've been changed because of these two woman. Forever changed. Awakened. Renewed. Inspired. Raw, but whole and present.

It's just what I needed.

May it inspire you, too, friends. Awaken your soul, renew and inspire your spirit, as it has mine.

Sleep tight,