Ch.230 Pat Guides Me Through the Desert

Ch.230 Pat Guides Me Through the Desert

Dec 2023

          Last night I participated in my monthly “Brothers and Wives” Zoom session. We had a good time together, sharing jokes, political concerns, and a discussion about spirituality.  My brother Art is 92, Brad is 85, Don and I are 79. Afterwards, I thought about how fortunate we have been to stay alive all these years, especially since all three of our parents died young (Art is my half-brother). 

          I awakened this morning remembering a dream: Pat and I are in a car and I’m trying to go somewhere west, through a desert and on to a coast. But it’s dark and getting darker. It’s the middle of the darkest night I’ve ever witnessed. And I don’t know the way. We seem to be at a crossroads; there is a small gas station nearby, not the big, lighted variety but an older style service station.

          “Pat,” I ask, “will you go into that station and get a map?” She nods her head, opens the door, and starts to get out of the car.

          That’s when I wake up.

          My death is approaching, probably not immediately, but nonetheless approaching. Carl Sandberg writes that, “The fog comes on little cat feet.” I suspect my death will come on little cat feet as well. Perhaps I’ll hear that kitty approaching my bed, perhaps I’ll see it before it lies on my belly. Possibly not.

          Apparently Pat will be my guide for that last journey. That’s kind of her. Makes me feel safe. Well, safer. It’s interesting that she might need a map, though. Perhaps each of us takes a slightly different route through that darkest desert.

          I’m not traditionally religious but I am curious. What happens when I reach the coast? Many years ago, I read about a man named Tom who was dying from AIDS. As he approached his end, his final words were “Well, this should be interesting.”        

    I hope Pat and that kitty aren’t in too much of a hurry. But I agree with Tom. It should be interesting when they arrive.