I received a call last evening that my first cousin, who has been struggling with the worst type of brain tumor for six years, is unresponsive and not expected to live through the weekend. Evidently the glioblastoma is causing severe edema on the brain. He has outlived the statistics for this deadly tumor by several years.
He and I grew up together in Virginia, living next door and sharing many adventures. He is three years older than I so he was the one who I followed as a child to learn about the woods and making forts. We remained close over the years, and he is my closest living relative.
His wife has cared for him since diagnosis. She has eschewed the prognosis of doctors and embraced spiritual healing for both of them. In the beginning when she would tell me about the crystals, the invasion of his body by his deceased mother who had many issues of her own, and how the healers were working to rid his body of his mother's tentacles, I thought that she needed the padded room. But as I listened to her, I respected that she had every right to believe what she did. Who was I to tell her what to believe or judge her for those beliefs?
Last night, she told me that he will have a shamanic death in which he will decide to die and not return, or will die and come back healed. She spoke of the illusion that she had of his getting well. Now she has let go of the illusion but keeps her belief that he has to have his journey. She was calm and accepting. I listened and asked a few questions to determine whether he was responsive or not. She doesn't want any family to be there. I would like to tell him good bye but will do that from afar.
I know that he has received so much love from her. She has sacrificed herself to give him strength, trying to love him well. I hope that the transition comes soon and that she is able to have a life for herself without him.
I cured with the power that came through me. Of course, it was not I who cured, it was the power from the Outer World, the visions and the ceremonies had only made me like a hole through which the power could come to the two-leggeds. If I thought that I was doing it myself, the hole would close up and no power could come through. Then everything I could do would be foolish. ~Black Elk - Oglala Sioux