My mom knows "The long dark tunnel from which there is no return".
She has always known it. It has lived her life alongside her.
Three years ago, she was dying. She was so very sick, we were told these were her last hours. She knew it was her time to enter that tunnel. And -she was ready to go. She WANTED to go. She knew, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that at the end of that tunnel would be, waiting for, arms outstretched, her mother; her father; her brothers and sisters; her baby boy, my brother, Oles. She wanted to enter that tunnel. She was so sick, she couldn't even open her mouth or lift her head. We moistened her lips with pieces of cotton wool dipped in water.
I spent nights with her. This last night, I believed to be her last night on the planet. She could barely move. Every time I closed my eyes, I expected to open them and find her still. Instead, at 3am, I opened them to find her sitting on her bed, cross legged, blanket over her shoulders, eyes fixed on me.
"Krysia, - how can I be an angel?"
That endless night, on the shores of death. On the threshold of another plaace. Not ending; - just another place to which we go.
My mother got better. And, for me, the veil between this place and that was torn. There IS another place. We all go thrre. This planet, this experience - a dream..
Beautiful, terrible, but temporary.
There is something bigger. A home to which we are pulled.
We are here and we are homesick. For what, we don't know. But it draws us, invisibly, each day. We miss it, but don't know what it is.
One day, each one of us will enter the tunnel. "The long dark tunnel, from which there is no return."
Lile my mother, I too want to know "how can I be an angel?".
But the question is premature. Ask instead " how can I be human?".
Let me be truly human. Weak and frail. Strong and noble. Kind. Unkind. Full of love. Full of envy and jealousy. My humanness the gift of these days.
Let me not give it away, ignore it, subdue it, lose it, deny it, forget it.
Human - ness