Look back, move forward.

Martin Luther King once said “Faith is taking the first step even when you can’t see the whole staircase.”

And so, in that spirit, after the memorials (which I will write about later), I have forged ahead leaving our beloved, but over-the-top creepy old house. While it’s a gorgeous place, the creepiness was a major problem for me from the moment we moved in – but now that I’m alone I can’t sleep there without feeling like someone is watching me. It quickly became a major inconvenience to sleep somewhere else at night, or try to talk one of the kids in staying over.  I have always lived best in newer places with less history. This is a major irritation to me, but has posed a consistent problem since I was little.

Even though Kevin’s passing left a palpable, still-lingering mist of peace in the room he passed away in, the pervasive creepiness remains in certain areas of the house. Less sensitive visitors helping us move who don’t believe in spooks have joked about the “torture chamber” in the basement (once a coal storage area), or the creepy closet in our bedroom – not knowing those very places creeped the rest of us out living there. Given the house is in such need of knowledgeable TLC for the structure itself, I decided to move to a lower maintenance place – freshly remodeled and painted, quite accidentally – in the precise colors of our living room.

I am finally living my dream of owning a mobile home! I have no basement to creep me out. I hear rain drops on the ceiling. I have a small yard, and can finally focus on other parts of living that don’t have to do with saving for construction projects at home.

Cool, unexplainable things keep happening.

10426221_10202692246611740_2486254045450262460_nHeart clouds, for one. For those of you who aren’t facebook friends, very distinct clouds shaped like hearts appeared on our way home from Tennessee after we scattered Kevin’s ashes. The hearts were so perfect they looked photoshopped – I had the kids take the photos from the back seat. I mean – as if you couldn’t miss them. There were three directly in front of me as I drove (the kids were sleeping until I woke them) and one to the right – shown here. They appeared ONLY as our song (Bless the Broken Road) played on my ipod. Since then I have seen no hearts in clouds – and never had before. When the song was over the hearts blew into regular clouds.

Repeating numbers? People who know me know I am always late. I am terrible with time and am NOT a clock-watcher – which is a great inconvenience to me and anyone who knows me! In addition to that, I am conducting a complex move, constantly packing or unpacking, plus freelancing. There’s no time to plot and plan to wait for the time to contrive this to happen – these are simply random times when I check my phone or make a call, and see these numbers. It happens so often I started making screen captures of them to show other people how odd it is this happens all of the time.

When I’m about to unlock my phone to make a call, I see repeating numbers. This happens almost every day now. It first started with the numbers 3:33 last November, which I thought was odd at the time – like, ‘hey, that’s odd – it’s exactly 3:33’. Here are some from the last couple of weeks. A new thing happening is the time ends with “28”. (Like 3:28, for example.) The weird thing is that Kevin’s, mine and Jesse’s birthdays are all on the 28th, and Kevin died on June 28 – so I’m wondering if that has something to do with it?

On August 28th, I went to make a call and noticed it was 3:16. Maybe this is nothing, but it is odd that Kevin died on the 28th, and his time of death was 3:16 – tho it was AM, and this was the afternoon.

Click on the photo to enlarge. The last one is August 28th, at 3:16. Kevin passed away on the 28th of June, at 3:16 am.


I had the power shut off at the old place. I forgot the day and was horrified it was yesterday – I still had 2 refrigerators to clean out ASAP! So I dashed over there and began throwing everything away before things got nasty. In doing so, I threw away some of Kevin’s last meals – 3 Gogurt tubes and 2 greek yogurt containers. In his last weeks, this was all Kevin could eat, and only tablespoon-fulls a day, at that. I kept these in the bottom drawer and couldn’t make myself toss them out, tho expired. I also kept his cancer meds in the fridge. With the urgency of throwing things out, I just pitched away, and told myself not to feel emotional about it. I wiped up fridge one, then onto fridge two, and was done.

Later that evening, at the new place, I was fixing dinner for the boys. I reached into the bottom drawer (new fridge, new place, but the same side as the yogurt was kept at the old place). I immediately felt the pang of deep sadness I wouldn’t allow myself to feel when throwing out the yogurt. Immediately as I felt this, the spice rack Kevin made made a huge KAA-BANG!!! as it fell flat on the floor. Thankfully it didn’t break, but it startled me! It also interrupted my sadness and reminded me that Kevin is not his illness, and the breakdown of his body in those last days were sadly necessary.

“Okay Kevin,” I said. “I will not be sad.”

My friends who think I’m matrixing coincidence to turn it into something to make me feel good don’t know me or synchronicity very well. If I felt well enough and had the time to conjure make-believe to make me feel better, I would be manufacturing it non-stop. But I’m not dishonest like that. Besides, Photoshopping a heart in the clouds and telling everyone it’s real would not make you feel better.

Did I mention the guys doing the remodeling on the new place were named Kory, Jesse and Chris? The names of Kevin’s three boys? You don’t make that stuff up.

When you have to ask yourself ‘what are the chances this would happen?” chances are there’s no chance involved.

Death is so sad because those we love are gone. But we have one super-power to get us through… the action of moving forward. You can look back, but only as long as you are moving forward in your life. I’m also learning that looking back lovingly, and not with deep sorrow, seems to be the good course. In other words, it doesn’t bring you down or impede the direction of your own life to look lovingly to the past, provided you’re moving ahead. There’s immense power in moving ahead, in rebirthing your own life after death.

Speaking of moving – the move has done some interesting things. In the old, empty house I’m now keenly aware of the sorrow soaked in those walls. Every light fixture I stared at, every window, every view I took during moments of reflection, whether morning or night, were all about “how much longer do we have?”. The old house was a prison of hoarding time. The new place is bright and fresh, full of light from skylights and big windows, with room enough only for good things. While the sweet memories of Kevin are here they are memories which inspire new beginnings. I can feel Kevin’s happy spirit bouncing in from time to time, but I’m sure he’s happy to know there’s only room for possibility here, and forward motion.

Dealing with grief - looking back and moving forward.

Dealing with grief – looking back and moving forward.


One thought on “Look back, move forward.

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