One of the great privileges of my work is that I have the opportunity to walk with people through some of the most challenging times in their lives. In that process, I teach what I know about making the journey easier, but in return, I get to witness the incredible strength of the human spirit in the face of tremendous adversity. I have learned to stand quietly on the sidelines, gently encouraging the growth that is taking place, and being inspired by the life lessons that unfold.
Facing our own mortality is undoubtedly one of the most difficult challenges in life. I recently worked with a dear client as she walked through the final weeks of her life. I was so deeply moved by what I witnessed that I feel compelled to share the incredible lessons she taught me.
Most people imagine that the end of life is a sad, “depressing” time, but I’m not so sure anymore. When you know the end is near, there is an amazing clarity that emerges. You are presented with an opportunity to engage life fully, with a degree of openness, presence and authenticity most of us typically avoid. I watched as my client savored each moment, appreciating every breath, basking in each drop of sunlight, and standing in awe of the miracle that is life. She used the opportunity to fully open her heart and clearly express love, gratitude, and joy to her loved ones. Even with her frail body, she reveled in all the laughter, singing, and dancing she could muster up. In those final days, she was more alive than any person I have ever met.