Saturday, June 20, 2009

Dying Alone, a Memorial Cairn

Dying is a phenomenon that is not unusual. Perhaps you have not thought of this issue.

One provocative post can be read at the "Elderly Living and Dying Alone. Sadly, too many of us leave this world with no one at our side. "Elder orphans" are discussed in the article:

"the number of Americans between the ages of 70 and 85, without a living spouse, without any biological or stepchildren, and without living siblings or half-siblings, will total more than 2 million people by the year 2030."

One such person who died alone yesterday was Leona Taylor. Although I did not know Leona very well, the facts were that she had no family still living, having had her husband precede her in death ten years ago. She was 92 years old, and had few visitors come see her in the nursing home other than hospital and hospice staff. She must have been a Christian, since she asked that the Bible be read to her in her last days. And Leona liked dogs. Therapy Dog Libby Sweetpea and I visited her in working with the local Hospice & Palliative Care over the past few months, and knew that only health issues occupied her time during our visits. No funeral services were planned.

Thinking about her life and knowing she had few mourners, it seemed some tribute should be made to her long life.

On my morning walk yesterday, I constructed a rock cairn memorial (a place of meditation and reflection according to Rock Cairns). Although it looks a bit crude, it was made with respect as a memory to her life; it is a tangible awareness that someone is thinking of her as she continues her journey into eternal life.

In Memory of Leona Taylor (1916-2009); Rest in Peace

What will you leave behind as your legacy? It is a thought provoking question.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Your comments mean a lot to me. Thank you so much for reading my post, and heaps more hugs and thank you's for leaving a note!