Fifteen years ago, I sat beside my father’s bedside as his body was dying. I held his hand, and wept upon his chest as it failed to draw another breath. I mourned the loss of the man who was my father then, and I still feel that loss today.
This letter is not to that man. Fifteen years ago, the heart within that man’s chest ceased to beat. At that moment, the heart of your Soul danced off into a magnificent Light to the sound of angels singing in perfect harmony. As the man who was my father drew his last breath, I was briefly allowed on the dance floor that opens up between life and death, and felt the wonder of the transformation of death to birth. We touched each other briefly with a language beyond words, and I felt the Breath of G-d brush my cheek with a final goodbye. The universe folded slightly, and a moment of magic beyond my understanding of time and space reached into the world that I live in, and drew me into itself.
Within that moment, I was given a wonderful gift. I witnessed and felt your transformation from this world that I understand into a Divine realm of which I can only vaguely touch the edges. A tiny droplet of Divine Light was left deep in my Soul, a seed that will continue to shape my life as I make my way through life.
As the years have passed, that seed of Light has often found a way to illuminate a new and better lens through which to view life. It regularly sharpens the focus and holds steady whatever lens is defining life for me at that moment. From the edges of the lens I can occasionally sense a faint Whisper, or glimpse a tiny wisp of Light. The Light that grows from the seed reminds me each day of the limitlessness of Divine Reach, and of the Oneness around which we all revolve and evolve. That growing Light leaves me no space for doubt that there is a You that exists somehow beyond the physical body that you once inhabited.
It is to that You I write this letter. I know very little about you now, and am not even certain that the human words I type here are part of the vocabulary of your existence. But I feel certain that even if these words fail to reach you in the same manner that they might reach a human reader, the feelings, emotions, meditation, and prayer that give birth to my words as I put them on paper will reach you somehow.
In this way I reach out to you, and offer the stroke of the back of my hand against your cheek as thanks. A hug from a grateful son – grateful for providing the DNA that formed me, and for providing a father’s guidance, love, and care for his son. Most of all, I am a son grateful to you for sharing with me that final moment of “birth” from this world into, well, into wherever it is that you exist today.
In this letter, I will tell the story of your final gift to me. You saw the story through the body of a dying man. I saw the story through the eyes of a man watching his father die. Perhaps by sharing the story through my perspective, I will catch a glimpse of what you may have seen as well.