You just don't realize how much you can miss a person until they're gone. That's how it is now--3 months since my mom left Earth and returned to Heaven. I have heard it said that this is our "temporary home", and I believe it. The night before her funeral, I found slides of my mom and dad's wedding. In color! It was the first time I had ever seen them. I found it to be a sign that she and Dad--who returned home to Heaven in 2005--were together again, and I believe happy.
Since that day 3 months ago, I have had numerous signs that they are together and in a place of pure love. Butterflies and doves and Cardinals have flown around me in pairs when I am thinking about them. I find it comforting, and it gives me a peaceful, warm feeling inside. One month after my mom's passing I had a vivid dream of her where I felt her hug me as if she was standing in front of me, and I heard her voice so clearly. She was young and glowing! I had the same types of dreams about my dad when he died fifteen years ago. I found them beautiful. Those dreams helped me to see how their world and our world totally connect. I know they are there on the other side living in pure peace and love with all of the relatives and friends who have returned home as well. That, in and of itself, helps me to better accept that they are no longer physically here.
When my dad died in 2005, my mom became dependent on me and my husband and kids. I come from a very Italian family where my dad really did take care of everything, and so when he wasn't here to do that, she needed me. It was hard and at times stressful on me, but looking back, I'm glad she had me to do it, and from my dreams, I know in my heart that she was glad I was there as well. There were so many times that we talked about my dad after he passed and throughout the next 15 years, and it was comforting to both of us. It kept him alive! Now, I find myself talking about the two of them more with my kids and my grandsons so that I can keep them alive. My grandsons never got to know my dad, Great Grandpa Tony. That I find very sad, but they new my mom...Great Grandma Mary. However, they are little-6 and 4- so, how much they will remember is limited. So, I decided to create a book for my kids and my grandsons and for any other grandchildren that come in the future! A compilation of stories about our family, both sides--mine and Grandpa Jim's.
I know I'm not the only soul out there who has gone through this or is going through it. After my mom died, I felt like an orphan...that sounds crazy when I say it because I'm a 55 year-old-woman! But, I do because now, they are both gone. And there are times...many times when I miss talking with my mom or dad about life and about raising kids, my career or just a recipe that I can't remember. I miss talking about traditions and holiday's past, and when I was a kid. I am so grateful for memories and pictures that hug me as I age and journey into the next stage of my life. In my heart, I know they are both with me always.I sense them, and I feel their presence during the day when I think about them, or get into a quiet zone, or even when I'm busy in the kitchen, or reminiscing with my husband and kids or chasing my wild grandsons around! LOL....life is such a beautiful mystery full of so many emotions.
For me, life is understood after you live it, memories are there to comfort, the presence of those who have passed is real, emotions...though difficult at time are necessary to feel, and love is everlasting.
Ria is an author who lives in Florida with her husband, her children and her faithful lab. One of her passions is to reflect on life through the written word.