I call here Weez. Louise and I are best friends. It never mattered that nearly 30 years separate us. Weez is 93. I’m 64. She is one of those rare birds who speaks without effort about life, love, growing inwardly, aging outwardly, and dying. Listening, your face is a rictus of sheer delight and wonderment. It’s as if you’ve been fed. You are made full.
These days she is growing backwards, more like a naked baby bird. Fragile and delicate as she moves along her journey toward oneness.
I want to share a few of her verbal gems. I liken them to colleting sea glass, treasured.
About dying, “Everyone’s doing it, why not talk about it?”
“It’s my first time growing old and so I haven’t had much practice,” adding, “It is pretty hard to quote yourself, when you never heard it before.”
“When people say there’s something not right about you, well, I’m expecting this is exactly where I am, where I’m supposed to be at 91.”
“I always wanted to die consciously and so it better happen real quick or it isn’t going to happen.”
“I show up at breakfast and I really am who I am, but all these people near my age don’t have any idea how hard we work at appearing as we are. We don’t want to give up looking and being perfect. That would be a real sacrifice.”
“I love being admired. I always have. But now I believe it is time to give that up.”
“I’m from another generation than the other ones all around me and so my head can get confused hearing about what they are all doing and talking about. I have a lot of memories. I realize I’m thinking about something when I was 9 years old and that was a long time ago. I am nearly beyond my time.”
“I know as my time draws nearer I’m thinking about all these things and checking the suitcase. I see myself packing and having everything in place but I don’t want to find that I’m more worried about whether I have the right things than being in the moment.”
“I talk about living in the presence. I’m reading a book that refers to this as living in the now. I talk about the eternal now, and now I know the presence I refer to is the now now.”
“In my condition, all I can do is see everything.”