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At 4 A.M., I awoke with this awesome dream:

I stand alone atop a steep hill as soft breezes caress my cheeks. Pinpricks of jeweled tones stud the night sky like a Moroccan shawl.

I perceived the dream as a gift from Creator God; its colors were flickering, inviting. Never have I experienced anything as beautiful—like screening the entrance into eternal life.

I’m grateful.

At 7:45 A. M, I awoke with this curious dream:

It is night. I’d spent the day in a great hall with a large mixed group of people who completed several important projects. Before leaving for our homes, a priest informs us that the archbishop wished to give us an ice cream bar. 

The night always symbolizes the end times that usher in darkness, the unknown. More than ever with the imperceptible increase in my symptoms, I move closer to the end time of this existence. With full consciousness, I still strive to adhere to my daily routine of self-care that include blogging and reading David McCullough’s John Adams (2004), and receiving the support of my helpers.

The great hall suggests my psyche’s unclutteredness, spaciousness, a place for working and playing. The large mixed group of people speaks of my harmonious energies dedicated to the completion of several important projects, symbolic of my ongoing purification, in preparation for my transition.

The priest, disguised as a messenger for the archbishop/God in disguise, announces our reward: ice cream bars: rich vanilla, coated with chocolate and pecans. They look yummy. At first, I avoid their milky softness and sugar, triggers for joint inflammations in my body. Then, I learn this is a different kind of treat:

As the psalmist proclaims, “Taste and see that the Lord is good.”

It’s true. My waiting continues …

“Looks like it’s still seventeen, Liz, like last December’s—Have you lost any weight?” asked Cayce the nurse practitioner from hospice as she removed the tape measure from my upper arm and slipped it into her bag. Her soft brown eyes opened onto her compassion like suns warming ocean currents, her face masked, her blue uniform pressed. She had already checked my vital signs and troubling symptoms.

“No, I don’t think so, and my clothes still fit—even though loose. Since it got cold, I only wear turtlenecks, sweaters, and sweat pants.” Over the years, my sister-in-law’s Christmas sweaters still afford me a daily change of color that brighten my day; others, as well, at times.

“That color—royal blue—sure looks good on you, Liz, with your silver-white hair. Must keep you warm.” I nodded, then she added, “But I see your breathing’s more difficult—looks like your concentrator’s set on three now,” she said stooping over to check the monitor. Never could I have guessed that I’d be so dependent on oxygen, recommended by my pulmonologist since 2013: then, it was nightly, at one liter per minute.

“The change is subtle, but constant. Each day is different, bit I still adhere to my usual routine. Exercise is critical, but with the help of Chronic Pain Anonymous I’m learning to gentle myself. Sometimes, I only do half my routine and let the others go.” From behind Cayce, the snow’s brilliance shone through the windows of the French door, brightening my dining room.

“Well, you still qualify for hospice, Liz. You’re doing very well with all of this. Be sure and let us know if you’ve questions or need anything,” she said, collecting her equipment. “We’re here for you.”

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