Whenever I hear that someone’s relative or friend is ill and near death, I always tell them what hospice physician John Lerma told me: Find out if the person says he’s recently had visitors, especially from people he once knew who are dead. When that happens, the person usually dies in 4 days. He noticed this in his own practice and compared his experience to that of other hospice doctors at a conference on palliative care, and they all agreed on the same thing: People died 4 days after the visit.
I told this to a very old friend, who wrote me this note after his father recently died: “Anne, you asked if my Dad had any visitation experiences in the days prior to his death. He did. It began last fall when I saw his Army buddies in the shadows above his bed checking to see if he was ready to cross (he wasn’t). Some days before he died, he told my sister that he had a conversation with a little boy. This morning I asked my elderly uncle if he knew of any little boys who died whom my Dad knew. He said that he had never told me, but that there was a kind lady friend of their family who gave one of the boys in the neighborhood some money for candy (a boy my Dad knew), and he took it and ran across the street and was killed by a car. She was devastated, and it wrecked her life. I had never heard this story before today.”
Other interesting news comes from someone I consider a friend, although we’ve never actually met: I have written two Diaries about her. This is a woman who was diagnosed with a brain tumor, so she identified with me, since I also spent time in the hospital with a brain injury. She recently wrote me and told me she is doing fine. She says, “I have recently become friends with a young man who is currently fighting brain cancer. Our stories are very similar, and I can only hope that he will experience the magical feeling of life after cancer, as I have done.”
We recently had supper with someone I call the Dark Lady, because she is so sure that mankind has only dark days ahead. But can our future be that dark when it contains such magic?
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