No Time-Outs

Outside the Circle


I remember how a friend told me that when his partner died of cancer, he didn’t understand how the bottom could have completely dropped out of the world and yet the world just went on as if nothing had happened. I remember him saying how it made no sense to him. “Why doesn’t it stop?”

I felt the same when both my parents died, within 4 months of each other, from harrowing illnesses. We at least both got to be there, by them, watching them die, knowing how it happened, gifting them as much comfort, dignity, and love as possible — even if his partner and my parents had suffered much lack of comfort and dignity before their final breaths. My parents had “good” deaths, understandable deaths, even if my world fell apart and I became, without choosing, a new person in a new world — which hardly anyone saw…

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