Welcome to my blog, Nobody’s Gone for Good. I never dreamed I would write a blog. Blogs were not invented by my generation. My granddaughters are in their twenties. A blog? Why? And why now? For the most part, I have led an ordinary life. But something happened to me that was not at all ordinary. It was, to say the least, improbable. It began a long time ago, and it took me a long time to write it down. I didn’t fully understand it until I had finished. It’s all in a book now, and it is time to let it go – to wherever it is supposed to go, to wherever it may do the most good. I have been told by this generation that a blog is its first step into the world. I am nothing if not obedient.
The title of my blog, Nobody’s Gone for Good, is borrowed. I was sitting in a movie theater when I heard those words sung onscreen. A woman who had passed on was sitting by her husband; her song was meant to console him, a man so lost in grief that he could neither see her nor hear her. My daughter, who was sitting next to me, touched my arm and said, “That’s it. That’s your line.” I had been looking for one simple sentence that would describe the book I had just finished, one simple sentence to describe the long journey that began with the death of my child.
Do our dead sing to us? Do they love us still? Where are they? Are they gone forever? Or does something live on, and do they whisper to us, saying, Don’t cry. Nobody’s gone for good.
My son Eddie died at the end of September. It was over thirty years ago, but I can still feel the dread that settled over me as Christmas approached. The thought of Christmas was like a kick in the stomach: a table with no place for Eddie. No gifts for Eddie. I was so angry! So crippled with pain. Christmas seemed to mock me with its tinsel and ornaments – cruel, vile attempts at convincing the world that there was love in it. Hadn’t it taken my child? When my ex-husband suggested that we have a tree and decorations and dinner at his house for our girls, I railed against it. “There will be no more Christmases, not in this lifetime,” I screamed into the telephone. In the midst of my rant, a noise coming from my hallway stopped me. When I went to investigate, I saw nothing, but when I opened the hall closet door, my Christmas decorations were on the floor. They had fallen from the shelf. All of them. I looked closer. Nothing was broken. And nothing else had fallen. Shaken to the core, I whispered, I hear you, Eddie, I hear you. That was when I began to listen.
Shakespeare said it so well: “There are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio, than are dreamt of in your philosophy.” Indeed, this is true. Something happened to me that happens to many, many souls. At the darkest moment, in the deepest throes of anguish, at the point in time when all seems lost, a gift is imparted; a pinpoint of light shines in the night, the glimmer of a small star reaches a spirit in despair, and gives it hope.
In a little more than a month, hopefully at Easter time, I will release my book, The Messenger. It is an account of recovery from despair, and a journey through a cosmic keyhole to another place, another time, where I learned that death, like life, is temporary. Nobody’s Gone for Good is where I will tell you of my improbable story, and where you might like to tell me yours. To be continued…