I’ve recently taken on a new role at St Christopher’s Hospice where my mum was a patient. Last week, I had an extraordinary transpersonal experience when I was there. I was sitting talking to a patient and I was suddenly struck with an overwhelming sense of excitement at the idea of spending the last of my days in that hospice too. I wasn’t in any rush to get to that point, but I simply saw myself very clearly, being there, dying there, and feeling happy there.
It got me thinking about the difference between knowing you’re dying, slowly, and dying very suddenly from a heart attack or an accident. It seems the default option most people go for is the sudden death route… no pain, no time to think or fear, here one minute, gone the next. But I find that more frightening. And what’s more, I’d miss out on the hospice experience.
Clearly, the hospice is not a perfect world. It is a place where people are dying, young as well as old, and many of them are in pain. But, there is magic there too. And I think there is something rather magnificent about dying in a place that exists entirely to make your experience of dying as OK as possible. You can read more about my work at the hospice here.
Missed Annie’s first blogpost? Read ‘A dialogue with death‘ here. Annie Broadbent (@anniebroadbent), our guest blogger lost her mother two years ago to breast cancer and began writing about her experience of grief. Her book, We Need To Talk About Grief, a guide for friends of the bereaved, will be published next November by Piatkus.