Sunday, October 10, 2010

Why the Dead Never Leave Us

Soon after my husband’s dear Grandma Lorenzen passed away, my son provided us a reminder of her.

Grandma Lorenzen had always collected little animal figurines. Years ago, I had given her a small eagle. After her passing, we kept this memento of her. My husband kept it in a little chest in “his” closet. (My husband is assigned the guest room closet for his clothes. I’m sure there are many other homes in which the guest room closet serves as The Husband’s Closet.)

One day, I walked into our bedroom and saw that little eagle sitting on my husband’s night stand by our bed. I kind of gasped, then smiled. I believe in signs, and I thought that was pretty cool. Perhaps Grandma Lorenzen was “saying hi.” I took the eagle and put it back in my husband’s wooden chest and told my husband about it.

That same day, or the next day (I do not remember), there was the eagle again, sitting atop our dresser.

No matter how many times that eagle was put in my husband’s wooden chest, our son, Parker, would get it out again and put it in our room.

It now stays on my husband’s nightstand. Watching us with an eagle eye. And we love every part of what that means.

My own dear Grandma Gourley always had a bowl of hard-shell nuts in her house all year round. As children, we always loved cracking our own nuts and eating them when we visited her house. During the holidays, it is common to see bags of those nuts being sold in the store, but I don’t usually buy any. Even though, years ago, my grandma gave me a brass nutcracker. I keep the nutcracker with our Christmas decorations, and every year I put it up as decoration in our kitchen.

A few weeks ago, as I sat in my grandma’s kitchen after she passed away, I looked around her home. I took in the scent that only belonged to the homes she had. I looked at all the beautiful things she carefully chose and placed throughout her home, and I saw that bowl of hard-shell nuts on her kitchen counter with a couple of simple nutcrackers on top.

A few nights ago, my husband and I sat on the couch watching TV. Parker was playing and rummaging around in the basement as he loves to do sometimes.

He came clambering up the stairs. He walked up to me and said, “Here you go, Mommy.”

He was holding the brass nutcracker. He set it on the couch next to me and went back to the basement.

I looked at my husband. “How in the world did he get this?!” I was astonished. I had a big smile on my face and tears stung my eyes.

“I don’t know!” he said.

You see, this nutcracker is in with big Tupperware containers on storage shelves in a storage room. We don’t get these out until we’re ready for Christmas decorating. You had better believe I’m going to have a bowl of hard-shell nuts out at Christmas time for that nutcracker!

Funny thing, this feeling of connection with others who have passed. It is fleeting. Sometimes you don’t feel them at all, you only feel the loss, and it is the deepest sadness a human can feel. Then, unexpectedly, a little sign, a little “hello,” and you know that they are with you, watching you like an eagle, “crackin your nuts,” and checking in on your child.

This morning, I woke and told my husband that I had dreamt of my grandma last night. I didn’t elaborate, as it was a sad dream.

My husband said, “Funny, I dreamt of all my grandmas last night, too.” (My husband rarely remembers his dreams.)

“Huh,” I said, as I reached in the kitchen cupboard to pull out a coffee cup my grandma used to have and warmed myself with some Sunday morning coffee.

34 comments:

Marylin said...

This post made me smile. :)
Whenever I see a ladybird (or ladybug, depending on where you are in the world) it reminds me of my friend Jenny, who passed away this summer. I like those little things that remind us of our loved ones. x

cristina said...

I have tears in my eyes. I love that your son keeps bringing these little reminders to you guys :)

Clipped Wings said...

I love this post..connections with people no longer with us. After dad died, my younger sister took in mom because she had the room to, but literally everything except mom's clothes stayed in the empty house. A year later when the house sold, I was allowed to collect what the owners saved that I might want. My husband and I made the trip across country, and most was of mom's things...I kept some and mailed the rest to mom to give her a closer connection to her past and her wonderful memories. The attachment to dad I found in his old wool felt cowboy hat he always wore. It sits in my workroom on a shelf and I love it dearly. Like having a part of him with me everyday in my life. I miss him so much.

LambAround said...

What a nifty post! Hubby is making zucchini bread and I was reading ingredients off to him and trying to read this at the same time. I just realized that I've completely sabotaged his baking by mistake (really, he should have known to separate the wet and dry ingredients anyway, right?) Things like this really make me think.

Draft Queen said...

It's great to feel that connection, even though your loved one is gone.

Christy said...

You know they say that children are most susceptible to the energies of those who have passed before us. I'm sure they just want you know they are watching over the little guy and will always be there for you.

Aging Mommy said...

What a beautiful post. Your son I believe is a very perceptive and sensitive soul, bringing you those reminders of those you love, quite amazing.

Oddyoddyo13 said...

It's a nice thing to know that those that are gone never really leave us...when Max was gone, I had at least four dreams about him, all of which consisted of him coming back home.

I love that Parker can find the smallest things that mean so much. :)

Kisha said...

WOW-these stories gave me chills! I think Parker is your little angel, doing good works for the dear ones looking down on you!!

Sandra said...

I love this and I completely agree. We need the "Dead" to watch over us, and make sure we don't trip over shoes and fall down the stairs and break our necks. My father passed away 15 years ago, and I swear, there are times when I can hear him telling me to "clean this room up before someone trips and gets hurt."

Tenille said...

I still have an old tea mug that I bought for my Grandfather many, many years ago, that came back to me when he died. It's nice to have those little reminders.

Krysten @ After 'I Do' said...

My friend Jake died in August and I have since had 2 dreams about him - both times telling me to stop worrying about him, that he's okay and if I ever need to talk he'll come visit. Totally makes me feel comforted and makes me miss him a little bit less.

Finding My Weigh said...

I got chills as I read this post. I love those moments. Thank you for sharing. :)

Shell said...

Sweet- though slightly eerie.

Elle said...

I, too, believe in signs like the ones you have shared. I love this post. It's beautiful that your Grandma is reaching out through your son. Thank for visiting LYLASandCO.com!

Amy Sullivan said...

Kids are so smart, and I love it when they give us gentle reminders about life.

Nancy C said...

This whole passage is so, so good:

Funny thing, this feeling of connection with others who have passed. It is fleeting. Sometimes you don’t feel them at all, you only feel the loss, and it is the deepest sadness a human can feel. Then, unexpectedly, a little sign, a little “hello,” and you know that they are with you, watching you like an eagle,
“crackin your nuts,” and checking in on your child.

Thank you for this bit of beauty today.

Mommy Needs a Vacation said...

What a sweet post! I have chills!!! The dead really do watch over us! Thanks so much for visiting me for my TMC feature! I am a new follower here as well!

Kara Niewohner said...

Great post Kristy. You are getting to be quite the writer. I enjoy hearing about your family and your experiences since we can't chat in the staff lounge anymore :(. Keep it up!!

Crystal Escobar said...

Oh wow, how cool is that! I just loved this post, it's nice to remember those who have passed.

TV's Take said...

WOW! All those signs are very neat and how special that your son is the one bringing them all to you.

colbymarshall said...

Aw. It'sthose memories that keep us going long after loved ones leave us. Good story

Shannon said...

Wow, this post gave me the chills! What a thought-provoking meaningful post!

The Drama Mama said...

I'm hearing ominous Twilight Zone music in the background there. ;)

I know what you mean. I don't use the same liquid fabric softener my grandma used to, but every once in a while, a sheet or something will smell EXACTLY like hers did. I take a long inhale and smile. It's almost comforting isn't it?

Annette said...

Wow. Both of your grandmas sent signs to you through the workings of your little boy. Our deceased relatives...they are with us, aren't they? I told my Aunty Sarah that she can send a sign to me whenever she wants...I know it'll come when I least expect it. I'm so glad I read this post--it's a good reminder that we're still being protected and loved by our angels above.

LindsayDianne said...

It is so important, I think, to honour memories through small tokens. your son knows that, it seems. :)

My great grandparents had a bwl of plastic fruit. Whenever I went over there I played and played with this plastic fruit, so when my great grandma passed on she included the fruit in her will, going to me.

Ma What's 4 dinner said...

Oh wow...it's true, they're still here. Kids are good at recognizing that.

Lots of yummy love,
Alex aka Ma What's For Dinner
www.mawhats4dinner.com

Mommyfriend Lori said...

Oh my gosh, so lovely. I miss my grandpa terribly and when things remind me of him I smile while the tears flow. I love the idea of being so open to the presence of those who have passed because they really are such an important part of our own spirit. Beautiful post as always.

kathryn said...

Lovely, sweet post, sweetie. I believe that we're touched by our angels more than we realize...I think we have to be very still to hear them.

I love hearing about moments like this...love the warm feeling I get when I remember those I so dearly miss...

Katie said...

What wonderful little reminders of those you love that have gone- but will never be forgotten.

Jamee @ A New Kind of Normal said...

What a story!

Stopping by to say thank you for being a part of my SITS day on Monday! It was an amazing way to start the week!

Amy said...

This is such a beautiful story. It's nice that you can acknowledge those signs. Some would just chalk it up to coincedence...I belive the grandmas are watching over your sweet family;)

frogpondsrock said...

This is a lovely post.

citymouse said...

This is sweet. I bought a gardenia tree this spring because they were my mother's favorite flowers. Every time I walk in/out my front door I smell the unmistakable scent and think of her. It makes me feel closer to her.