I want to tell you what happened on the final day at my mom's house.
But first, (it will all make sense shortly) one of my favorite poems is this:
I have it taped to my computer so I see it constantly, letting it seep deep down as unvarnished Truth to keep my soul afloat when waves of grief pull me under.
Sometimes it seems all too much -- growing up in a family of six, now there are only two members of my original family: me and my sister. I imagine my Mom and Dad, sister and brother (and brother-in-law) enjoying a heavenly feast with assorted aunts and uncles and cousins and precious pets who have all passed on. Isn't that what is promised?
Loving so deeply comes with the price of pain and sorrow, something I learned at a very early age when my sister Cathy passed away suddenly as a teenager. I learned what the words "congenital" and "endocarditis" meant, and I learned that life was fragile and fleeting, and I learned that one day you could be camping on vacation and the next day be wailing at the morgue. A shattered world and shattered heart takes a lot of time to put back together, and it is never ever the same.
I also learned that sorrow can exist with joy, in the same place and at the same time. Laughter and tears and joy and loss get all mixed up together, creating a poignant, pain-drenched yet hopeful outlook that one day the tidal waves of grief will recede and the sun will shine again.
And often right when we need it the most, help and healing come from the most unexpected places. I have filled pages of my notebooks with "signs and wonders" of uncanny events and circumstances and discoveries that defy being classified as mere coincidences. These heavenly hugs pull me back from the brink of despair and keep me afloat for another breath, as I try to keep my eyes above the waves, focused on Hope.
Now, on to the story, which is this:
Today was the last day at my mom's house (my childhood home). I took a final load of items to the Light House thrift shop, and left a key for the new owners along with a card sending them best wishes for making as many happy memories as we did in the 40 years we lived there.
I took one last look around the backyard, and bent down to turn over a ceramic planter to see if it was one my brother had made.
Out dropped this pair of angels wings!
I can only say I was guided there by Spirit, as I never ever had looked in that planter in all the years it had been half-buried in the garden. (You can see it in the backgroud.)
I certainly didn't know anything was in it, and I had never seen those angel's wings before.
Thank you Lord for the heavenly hug and a beautiful send off to this beautiful home. What has been a very painful event now will be remembered with a smile in my heart.
An added blessing to this story is that I had just come across a photo of my Mom standing in that very spot when the house was just getting finished being built. Here she is, waving with delight in the backyard of her dream home in Dana Point.
Where she is standing is the exact spot where the blue ceramic planter was buried, housing the angel's wings that came to me right on the day when I needed them most.
When I shared this story with my childhood friend, she said, "Hang on to the wings of memories, shall they soar forever in your heart!"
To add a final coda to this story, after I got home and shared this with hubby David, I picked up one of the countless boxes I have been sorting through. I came across this card from my Mom.
I especially like the line, "I asked Him to send treasures..."