A Tale of Strength Through Art of Living – Story of Michele Hylton, Jamaica

On Wednesday October 19th, 2012 my husband was diagnosed with a very aggressive acute myeloid leukaemia. The doctor explained that it was progressing rapidly, as the white blood cells were taking over his body. He told me there was no cure, only treatment. My question to the doctor was “doctor how long does he have to live?” his response was “if he is lucky he has one week”. Once I heard this the first thing that came to my mind is I need to get my children (two boys; ages ten and seventeen) to come to Kingston ASAP!

That night at the hospital I realized my husband was dying. I could feel it in my heart, I sensed it.As I drove home alone to my sister’s where I was staying. I tightly held onto the steering gripping it tighter and tighter as I drove. I screamed, I cried helplessly and I prayed to God and begged him to please grant me one wish; please allow  my children to come and see their father, and him to see them. At this moment in my life I realised that time and family were important and I just wanted them to be together.

They saw their dad on the following Thursday morning. On Friday morning at the hospital my heart kept on telling me, despite being advised  not to tell my boys that their father was dying. When I told them tears came and they cried. The older one went for a walk outside the building, while the younger one was still crying.  I held him as my heart sunk and told him that I understood he was  sad because his father is leaving; but also told him that “can you imagine how daddy must feel if we feel this way, because he knows he is leaving us”. I urged him to be strong for his dad because he needs us now more than ever.

I told him to go to his bedside; hug him, tell him you love him, or if you feel like saying nothing at all, no problem, God will guide you. Both my sons made their peace and told him they loved him. My husband was also able to bond with them.

The following  morning I walked into his hospital room and found him dead.. at that moment I hugged him, told him I love him and cried unconditionally when  my sons arrived I prayed over his body. I thanked God for giving me the opportunity to share his life with him. I thanked God for allowing me to have borne the seeds of my husband and blessing us with  his two boys. I promised him that I will continue to make him proud of them and to bring them up the right way.

After my prayers my youngest son said “daddy your mission is over”. During that moment in the hospital room I knew my husband’s spirit was present. I felt at ease and at peace as this was our thanksgiving service, and I knew he was comfortable.

Throughout this short and sad time the words of Dushyant Savadia kept on ringing in my ears “do not live in the past as it only brings sorrow and regret. Do not live in the future as it brings fear and anxiety”. Live in the present. I kept on hearing him snapping his fingers and saying “live in the present.” His CD ‘Pure Calling’ also helped me to keep calm and peace in my soul.’

I am so grateful that my husband and I participated in the ‘Art of Living’ breathing techniques course four months before. I am a strong and practical individual, but this ‘AOL’ course helped to strengthen me even more when I needed it most. I encourage those who have participated in the ‘AOL’ course to continue to and to encourage others to do so.

I hope sharing my experience will help others. Strength is what is needed in these times, not weakness.

Michele Hylton, Jamaica, October 2012

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8 Responses to A Tale of Strength Through Art of Living – Story of Michele Hylton, Jamaica

  1. Jacqueline Richards says:

    Dear Michele,
    I join so many others who knew your husband, Joel, in offering our sincere condolences to you, sons, Brandon and Jordan and loved ones. I still remember vividly his great spirit and ‘giant’ laughter at our Alpha reunion last year. May God’s gift of memories of how he lived and loved keep you comforted. Just as your he had been there for us, know that we are always here for you. .
    Hugs agape.
    Jqi Richards, Atlanta GA

    ♫ Seasons in the Sun… http://youtu.be/Rl03zXT68J0

  2. Sharon Gordon says:

    Michele, thank you for sharing this very personal journey with us. I am completely humbled by your strength!! I will never forget that Thursday morning call from Jackie or that message you left me…we were all looking forward to being together to celebrate my 50th and then bam, life happens!!

    I sit here with tears streaming down my face as I read your words and feel your peace, I too am at peace. You have encouraged so many of us who are your close friends to stay strong and be of good spirits… when it was you who we should be comforting and saying those words to.

    I love you my friend and I pray for your continued peace. My prayers go out to your sons, Brandon and Jordan…they are so blessed to have you as a mother. I know Joel’s spirit will guide them through their journey.

    I so happy we spent your birthday together and Joel and us had big fun!! I also remember you sharing about the Art of Living course…and I too am happy that you and Joel had a chance to experience this together. Meditation is a beautiful thing!

    Beat the drums an ancestor has transitioned…beat the drums for Bro Joel Hylton…beat the drums…beat the drums….ASE!!!

  3. Michele I admired your strength and attitude all through high school and now i have renewed respect. I pray that you will continue to keep the faith and to bring up those two wonderful children you have to be as strong and spiritual as their mother. God Bless you all your story is an inspiration to us all. I feel privileged to call you a friend and to have met your husband, he was one of a kind and we will miss him.

  4. Karen Smith (Cadien) says:

    I am so happy you were able to share your experience with us Michelle. it’s comforting to know that you and your boys have found peace. Time heals all wunds. May the Lord continue to guide you.

  5. Jennifer Hylton says:

    Michele I admire your strength at this very difficult time. You were a good wife for Joel and he was blessed to have you by his side. I will always be here for you and the boys and I hope you understand that we are still family and Joel’s passing did not change my love for you, Brandon and Jordan.

  6. Maria Lyn says:

    Hi Michelle:
    Wow-powerful words. Next time when I need a speech, I will seek your advice. :O) Before we were born, our lives were planned for us. This is your journey, to continue life with Brandon and Jordan. I know that Joel will always be around in spirit and love. Yes, God gives us the strength and the support to carry on. You both had a wonderful life together, thus bearing 2 wonderful boys. Joel will always live through them and in them.
    I hope you are keeping well. I think of you often and how you are coping.
    Love,
    Maria

  7. michelehylton says:

    IT is indeed an inspiration to read such touching thoughts and sentiments may God continue to bless you and your families and all the best for the Holidays.
    MICHELE

  8. Jacqueline Richards says:

    Big hug, Mich!

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