(Note: This is one of the posts I was working on...finally...)
So seriously, do you? My father and I both believe that my grandfather visits us. When I am at my grandmother's apartment, I can feel him there, and my dad talks to him now and then. Not in a creepy way, in a sweet, "I miss my Pops" way.
Wednesday was the funeral for my uncle. It was awful. I went through an entire little plastic package of tissues during the service. I almost got up and left the church two or three times. I just couldn't stop crying. The worst trigger was one of my cousins, his daughter heaving and weezing with tears. I couldn't see her from where I was sitting, but I could hear her, and it broke my heart. She is 30 years old but both she and her sister are very close to their parents.
During the service though, I felt my Papaw there. He was sitting next to me for support. If you have never felt that feeling, it is wonderful and creepy at the same time. My rational mind telling me he's not there, but yet the rest of me can still feel him. The service was a Catholic service, and when communion was given I felt my grandfather leave. He was Jewish and when he left it felt like he was uncomfortable, and that's why he left. I told him to come back, over and over in my head, I told him to get back here. I didn't care that it wasn't his religion. I didn't feel him for a few minutes, but when communion was over, he was there again.
I asked my father later if he thought Papaw was there. He said when he went into the viewing, he talked to Bill. Specifically, he told him to "get the hell out of there, and get up." But that when he was talking to him, he felt like it was his Pops, not Bill that was in front of him. He was sure he was talking to my grandfather.
Bill's death was just such a tragedy. I will always remember him standing in his kitchen, apron on, a huge glittery grin on his face, a glass of red wine in his hand. We shared a love for cooking and I always felt a bond between us there. He could think of very little in life that brought him more pleasure than cooking for friends and family, and I feel the same way. Given most any opportunity, I love feeding my crew.
So in Bill's tradition of "no big deal" 6-10 person dinners, I invited my friends over to make cookies that night, to end a rotten day with something pleasant. We ordered pizza because I didn't think there would be time to cook and bake, but we still dirtied the kitchen something fierce. Before we started baking, I pulled out a bottle of good wine that Bill and his wife had given me for my housewarming a year ago. We toasted Bill and my friend Jenny swirled her glass round and round, pretentiously sniffing the wine. She drank some and swirled again. This time, the red wine splashed out and landed squarely on her shirt. Jenny and her sister, who was also there, and I were all close to Bill and his family. We all looked at each other, slightly shocked. Jenny's sister looked at us, eyes wide, and said, "That was Bill! Bill did that!" We all laughed and Jenny said, "Yeah he's up there saying, 'didn't you learn ANYthing at my house!'" We spent the rest of the night roaring with laughter, making cookies and having fun with icing.
When everyone had left for the night, I sat down on my couch. Now, before my friends came over, I had vaccuumed my living room. Including right by the couch, but when I glanced down at the floor by my feet, I noticed a fortune cookie paper. I had not had Chinese food in months, and after this incident, I called everyone who had been at my home that evening to see if they had recently had Chinese. None had. I picked it up to read it. It told me,"You have a lively family."
Rationally, that is just a wonderful coincidence, but emotionally, it made me wonder whether Bill or Papaw had left it there for me. What a wonderful thing to say about my adopted family. And so true. I hope you have been blessed with a family as lively as the one I have been given. Their energy can help you survive anything.