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I have given birth to two children. 
In each experience there was stretching and churning and contracting and breathing.
It was all a part of bringing life to these children.
It is the preparing of the body for the passing of newness from the inside to the out.
It is hour by hour and then minute to minute.
For some it is a long wait, for others it comes quickly. 
I have also been in the presence of two people dying.
The same happens when one is leaving from this world to the next.
Each movement of stretching and churning important to the final moments of passing away.
The process is not too different than the process of birth.
Each agonizing hour passes as one hopes and prays for the final end.
Life comes after the breathing and the pushing takes place and 
the words form from physicians lips, “you are ready to deliver”.
Death is the same process.
Death comes with contractions and breathing in and out as the body tires of the process and gives up and the love one is told, 
“you can go home now”.
The beginning and the end are opposite forces with different results.
The journey into life and the journey out of it is the same.
The lungs expand as life is pushed towards us.
The lungs expand as life is removed from us.
Breath is all a part of it.
When one is pronounced alive the breath is checked and the vitals are recorded
and the words are spoken,”life is here”.
When one is pronounced dead the breath is monitored and the vitals are recorded
and the words are spoken, “it is over”.
It is all about the breath.
The inhaling and the exhaling saturating the lungs causing them to expand as they pour oxygen into the one arriving.
The process of dying is the opposite.
It is the shutting down and the slowing of one laboring to leave.
We watch for color in the skin and signs of change.
It is all about the breath.
Expectant mom’s are instructed to breathe through the contractions so the pain is minimized.
The dying one does the same. 
The body knows and the anticipation and anxiety of leaving is minimized with medication. 
One is told to work hard and push it through.
One is calmed and kept comfortable as the end nears for the one passing.
Each journey is so similar yet so very different.
Life and death.  
It is all about the breath.