Waiting on dinner, I checked my Facebook messages and read “You should come sooner than later. She seems to be holding on, enjoying time spent with her boys, but her time is close.”
I put down my phone, packed my basket with oils, sage, my drum as well as snacks, water, and coffee. When death calls, I never know if I will be going for a short visit or a long. I ate quickly and got in my car, immediately tapping into my dying friend. Before I was even out of my driveway, I was singing Spirit Song [song of the soul] and could feel the miles between us dissipate. I was in duel reality…existing both in ordinary reality-driving my car, watching the road & the otherworld– a psychic/shamanic state of existence. In the otherworld, I was sharing space with my friend; as close as if I were sitting by her bedside. In this state, I could see her life force and recognized that my decision to see her that evening was a good one. I felt it as an honor and a duty, that death itself was asking me to come recognize such a beautiful soul as she transformed from body to spirit. Her work as a healer needed to be acknowledged.
When I got to her house, I was touched by the way her family was already showing reverence. The love in the house was palpable, and there was a somber reverence that spoke of how much they wanted to honor her in her passing. We spoke for a few moments about creating sacred space when a loved one is passing, and soon they were walking around the house collecting photographs and special items to place on the altar in their mother/friends room.
Creating an Altar for the dying is a beautiful and thoughtful way of calling in the Ancestors to help with the transition between life and death. I have given directions for creating an Ancestor Altar at the bottom of the article.
As her family gathered pictures and memories, I began to do Reiki on my friend and to sing gently to her. My song was a continuation of the song I had already been singing to her during the 20-minute ride from my house to hers. When singing the song of dying, the words are not important, in fact, I seldom sing with words at all. The song of dying is sung with emotion and reverence for the person awaiting transition and for death itself. As a Medium, Death is a friend of mine. I spend much of my life between the veil, communicating with those who have transcended into death. I have a great respect for death, and can honestly say that I love it.
By loving death, I do not mean that I love pain and suffering. I mean that I love the act of transition. Like birth, death is magical, it is more ‘real’ then any other experience we will have in our lives. When we sit with death we cannot be anything but what we truly are. We are vulnerable.
Singing to my friend, I began to loosen the strands of life that were sticky; the places she held tight to her body. I sang and I soothed. I could feel her life force & was aware that her death would be soon and did not believe she would live another day. My song was joined by the soft murmurs of the others in the room. Her children and friends joining in ‘spirit song’, guiding her soul across the veil. As I held my tones out long, I felt her sliding on the vibration and he