Grieving story

My phone started singing to me yesterday, just before sunset. When I shove it into the snug side-pocket on my jeans it sometimes sets off a kids game or butt-facetime-calls my last contact, it never activates the music app at the bottom of the screen. Besides I’d pocketed it some time ago, it should have settled, but the angelic voice of Loreena Mckennitt suddenly rose up from my pants while I was outside hunting for eggs. She was one of Terry’s favorite artists during the last stages of her illness. She said she helped her to breath and relax.

I let the music play and continued to walk, focusing on Terrys presence. I could feel her light, her clarity. I’ve needed to let go of a lot of things before I could feel her again. So much water under the bridge, so much clinging, such a need for clarity. I saw her encompassing all of us with love. Not a romantic love but a Mothers love … a radiant, transcendant, utterly pure of heart, Mothers love. When I try to pull for more, or encroach upon its glow she just backs off a bit. She’s coaching me on how to receive what she can give without clinging.

Tadg popped his head out the back door almost immediately.

“What are you doing?”

“Hunting for eggs.” I decided I’d tell him later about Mommas musical visit.

I finished my circle of the house, letting Loreena’s voice, aka Terry’s voice, gather around me and carry me through the lavenders. She kept calling me back to receiving. When I grabbed at her she eased off a bit. It was clear that if I really received what she was giving, I’d also have to let go of the past. I’m not entirely ready for that yet.

A poem from just last week:


Honeysuckle and lavender
pull me back here,
to the pond with its toad chorus,
and the children,
who seek refuge in me at night
while they sleep,
while I wander,
looking for you.

I wake with the lacquer of
the land of the dead cloying at me
worn from the journey there and back.
I can’t force my soul to stay,
it knows the paths there
too well,
searching for you,
to play, to hug, to laugh,
to share stories about our children,
to find out how you are,
what you have learned there.

I went to the spirits to ask them for help with my wandering. Its not unexpected, I’ve observed it in others when I’ve done psychopomp work for people who have lost loved ones recently. Its hard to let go, our spirits know how to travel even if our conscious selves don’t. Usually its not a huge problem. People are tired, they don’t feel well, but eventually they learn to stay here more. Sometimes though, they bring things home with them, or leave a back door open, for an unwanted visitor to make its way into their home, perhaps even into their body.

The spirits showed me a shared heart place Terry and I have, where the two of us blended into one another. I worked with the spirits to pull back that which is mine. Her heart glowed brighter and brighter as my entanglement eased. So beautiful. I didn’t finish, that work will probably go on for a long time. Things will shift, I’ll return again for another round. I must have cleared enough to earn her Loreena Mckennitt call. I wished I’d paid attention to the words in the song that played. Terry always loved a good pun, I’m sure there was a joke in there somewhere.

The kids still focus on the sister-stone to communicate with Momma. Last night on our way to bed True asked me to talk to Momma. I told Terry how much we loved her, we missed her. I kept talking for a while until True said “night night Momma, love you.”

We went to visit the other stone this weekend. After spending the night with Grandma we took the short trip from San Rafael to Mill Valley and walked up the hill to the top where Terry’s grave is. The scenery that day was apocalyptic. Nearby fires turned the sun a blood red…like stop light-blood-red. Then fog made heavy with the smoke rolled up over the hill that was dotted with eucalyptus and a few spindly oaks. We were standing on the set of Dark Shadows.

True brought her new toy, action figures of the Incredibles family with her. The fog was misting so she decided not to play with them by Momma’s grave, but we introduced each one to Terry. True would hold it up and wiggle it in the general direction of the grave as I said the characters name. Tadg laid flowers that Grandma bought, so carefully, with so much love. Bella sniffed around and sat on the grave for a moment or two, looked up at us and smiled, before heading off to follow the scent of other dogs or coyotes.

I felt into the grave, imagining its weight on her wrapped body, her joy at being useful to the Earth in a new way.

Its felt like the kids have turned a corner in their happiness. They’re not done figuring all of this out yet, not by a long shot. True still asks where Momma is, what her spirit is doing right now. But they are freer than they have been in a long time. I think they’ve settled in to who we are now. True drew a picture with three people, each with a big red heart floating above them.

“This is me, this is big brother, and this is Papa. This is our family!”

Its settled, now we are three.

Tadg seems more confident. It looks like Papa will still function like Papa usually does. Food will happen, sleepovers will happen, school (summer care) and of course TV will happen now that its summer. Mamma is in spirit, but the world has not fallen apart. Mexico will not go to the World Cup finals AGAIN, but life is still good.

I feel more connected to Terry’s spirit now, I’m no longer looking for signs from her. I wish that the kids could experience those, I know it will come when and if the time is right. They’re still trying to figure out their place in this world, perhaps not the right time for messages from the other world. I guess I’m ready to feel settled with the new state of things for now too. Feeling her light here with me, with all of us, makes that easier.

May her presence continue to entwine us all.

Much love to you and yours during this time of great change.

%d bloggers like this: