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The door to heaven 

Jacob has been struggling with his relationship with God lately. I think it’s partly his age, partly the grief of losing his grandpa, and partly learning religion in his Catholic school when he’s been raised Anglican/Lutheran. 

Yesterday we stood in the parking lot of Save On, looking at the sunset, and talking about it looking like the door to heaven opening. On the way home I had my own personal confirmation from the heavens that I was on the right path. Little did I know last night when I went to sleep that our sunset miracles were far from finished. 

Jacob woke up this morning as bright eyed as he’s been in ages. He told me that he hadn’t prayed in a long time, but before he went to sleep he had prayed for two things. He prayed to be able to talk to his grandpa one more time, and he prayed for proof that God was real. 

He said last night he had a dream that he walked over to my parents’ house and my dad was waiting there for him. They hugged and then Jacob asked his grandpa a bunch of questions about how he was doing, what it was like and other things. This alone makes me happy as my dad came to me once in a dream not too long after he died, and all I did was yell at him that if he could appear in a dream I wanted him back in real life. 

I’ve  had Jacob tell me the whole story several times today and every time it’s the same thing with the same small details. Like how God has a calm and gentle voice that makes everyone who hears him lose all their stress and worry. Or how his grandpa lives in a house exactly like his old one here and he still sees all the alive people in the house. 

There was a lot more, Jacob walked around the house with grandpa who explained to him how he was able to be there and not be there at the same time. He talked to him about heaven and about God. Jacob is in the process of writing all this down and I will let him tell his story in it’s entirety when he’s finished. 

On the way into school Jacob was once again telling me  his dream and he said I had my prayers answered.  I got to talk to grandpa again, and I now know for absolute certainty that God is real. 

  

What a miracle. I’m still processing it all. 

My happiness moment was watching The Book of Life this evening with the kids. We didn’t know what it was about, but it actually tied in nicely with Jacobs dream and celebrating the memory of those who have passed on. The kids both really enjoyed it, and I love hearing those belly laughs. 

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Halelujah, Mr. Bean

We decided today was the day to start church shopping. It’s only taken us 6 months to get to this point, but better late than never I suppose. There are many reasons why it took us so long (laziness, summer, not sure where to go, wanting to sleep in….) but the one reason that had truly held me back really came to light today in service. It was hard for me to be in the house of God and talking about heaven and not think about Dad being there. Which is fine (no it isn’t) except for the sudden outbursts of tears I am prone to, and I wasn’t really excited about bawling my eyes out in front of a bunch of strangers who could ask me what was wrong. Because having to explain all that is just difficult.

So, I did go to church with a little anxiety today. I’m already socially awkward and I really didn’t need anything extra to have to worry about. Not too far into the service the minister started talking about heaven and God being there and loving us,  and my eyes started leaking. I can’t help when it happens, and once those tears start rolling they don’t want to stop. Actually, sometimes I think I really need to stop some afternoon and just have a good cry. I think I would probably feel better after it.

Fortunately God took pity on me and decided to break things up a little bit as the next hymn was All Creatures Of Our God and King. Beautiful hymn, but all I could think of was Mr. Bean singing in church and I couldn’t stop smirking. I really hope no one was looking very closely at me as I’m sure they would think I was prone to violent mood swings.

It was exactly what I needed though. Mr. Bean is awesome. But, aside from the much needed humour he brought to me, I needed the reminder that we are all awkward and “uncool” and weird at times. I was all blury eyed not really able to read the hymn words, but like Mr. Bean as soon as the Halelujah’s came along I could sing them loudly and with meaning. Then back to blahhhh blaaaahhhh blahhhh.

My happiness moment was sitting in church with Jenna beside me, Dad in my heart, and Mr. Bean in my brain. We all need each other, no one can walk through this life alone.

Yesterday I wrote about how beautiful the sunsets are here, and how I prefer them over the sunrises. Well, this morning when I woke up I was treated to this view out my front door:


Just a simple reminder that both the beginning and the end of things are beautiful and important.

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Unanswered Questions

I suppose from now until the end of my time on Earth I will have unanswered questions. But they seem to be popping up more and more in the last three weeks. I can’t believe it’s been almost three weeks since Dad died. It feels like forever, and yet I still can’t believe most of the time that it’s actually happened. Often I’m walking along like life is normal and then I get this weird feeling that something is dreadfully wrong, and then it hits me in the gut (or heart) that something is in fact dreadfully wrong.

Lately on top of those terrible gut (heart) feelings are the number of unanswered questions that are starting to pile up. Things I wish I’d asked Dad, things I wish I’d listened more closely to when he talked to me. I so wish there was a phone line to the other side so I could ask him the things I need to know. Little things like what kind of flower is that again? and big things like what is heaven like, are you happy there? Accepting that these are conversations I will never have with him is a difficult thing to do.

Already so many things have happened and I have thought I can’t wait to tell Dad about this and then I realize…. I can’t. Countless times Dad and I have headed out for a walk along the ridge and shared our spiritual journeys with each other. It seems impossible to me that I can’t have any more of those walks. Although…. I can still feel it when I go out for my own walks. It’s not the same, but I can still feel it.

I wish I had paid more attention to what he had to say. I tried to, but it seems that so many things have been forgotten. Even near the end, somehow I thought I would have more time. And now, I’m left with these unanswered questions.

Happiness moment: after spending a couple of hours driving around town doing errands the kids and I ended up being hangry so we went out for supper. It  was beautiful out so  we sat on outside and played rock, paper, scissors and played eye spy. Life happens in these little moments and I find most of my true happiness comes during these times. I am so thankful I have these truly fun little people to hang out with and I am even more thankful that they like hanging out with me. 

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Difficult life lessons

This morning after Jenna and I had dropped Jacob off at school (and she’d scooted as fast as she could into the front seat) we were driving down the road when two cardinals flew down in front of us. I was watching them play together, they looked like they were playing tag and just really having a wonderful morning flight. Suddenly they both swooped down a bit lower and while one flew right back up, the other was hit by a car going the other way. One moment there was a beautiful red bird flying and the next there was just a puff of red feathers falling to the ground.

It broke my heart to see something go from such joy to non-existence in a flash, but what made it worse (for me) was the little gasp I heard from beside me – followed by “Oh mommy. I wish I hadn’t been looking out the window just now.” And then she burst into tears.

Horrible. I had to think quickly of what to say to try and make things better. I knew it was going to be one of those “learning moments” and I wanted to choose my words wisely. I started by simply saying that I too had wished I hadn’t been looking out the window then, that I wished we hadn’t seen that. But I started thinking there is so much more to this lesson this poor bird gave us.

We said a little prayer for the life of the bird and then I started talking about how the bird is in heaven and how heaven is a beautiful and wonderful place. How we already knew other animals in heaven that would welcome that bird. That Kayla, Oscar, Jaime, Rolex and Pirate were there. I said Snowflake, my other ponies from my childhood, my old dog and cat Penny and Torts were there and that they’d all welcome a new bird. That God already had a place in heaven for all of us and that he was happy to have the bird back with him.

Jenna sobbed “but I bet God wasn’t planning on having that bird back with him today.”

I said that no, He probably hadn’t planned on having that bird back today, but no matter when it was anyone’s time to come back He always has a place waiting for us. But also to remember that life is short and every moment is important and you should always make choices that bring you closer to love.

Poor little girl went off to school all red eyed to write one of her big exams. It was not how I would have chosen to start the day for her, but I’m so glad that she has that caring and kind heart that loves all of God’s creatures.

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