Every so often I stop to remember why I write this blog, and why I slog away at it every week. It must seem that I am forever recounting small miracles, improbable occurrences, and stops along a spiritual path. I am, of course, but I am aware of these things only because of what happened at the beginning. It started with grief. Not just any grief, but that special, life-threatening grief that comes with the loss of a child. My spiritual path began there. Not that I knew it at the time. I wonder if we ever know the moment of embarkation on the journey to another sphere of recognition. For that is what it was, the journey to the realization that Nobody’s Gone for Good. It’s the name of my blog.
I write this for the mothers and fathers who know that special, awful brand of grief, but I also write it for everyone who has ever known a heart-rending loss. At some point in time, that will be everyone. Grief is part of life. It is not life itself. And that is the difference a journey to the spiritual side of life made me understand.
I take no credit for understanding this great difference. That was a gift. It was either that or death for me. I lost a son. My daughters lost a brother. My mother lost a grandson. His father lost a son. His friends lost a friend. Even as I say it, I have trouble with that word lost. But as it is in that beautiful hymn, Amazing Grace, “Once I was lost, but now I’m found,” our loved ones could never have really been lost. And no matter how it may have seemed, we were never really lost, either. I think the idea of being lost is an illusion. It’s something I believed. It wasn’t true. Because I am here. I am not lost at all. And neither is my boy. I can feel him here with me.
The illusion of loss is the basis of grief. And we must feel it. I don’t know why. I only know that when the illusion becomes our belief, we feel grief. And I think that applies to every “loss.” I “lost” hope. I “lost” joy. I “lost my career.” I “lost” my child.
But then, for some of us, the embarkation occurs, and we put one foot in front of the other and begin the long, slow journey to another realization. There are many ways to be led to the point of embarkation. For me, it was threefold: a book, a gifted medium, and contact with a Spirit Guide. For some, it may be a friend. It may be the words to a song, or a line in a play. Any number of inspirations can lead from one belief to another. I was neither easily convinced, nor did I learn to believe in another way quickly. My new beliefs were based on evidence, evidence that death is an impotent power, another illusion, and that the person who is lost is merely…elsewhere. In another form. And, most importantly, that communication with that person is possible and natural, with love as the bridge. This is not easy. The transition to a new belief in life asks us to consider the reality of something that cannot be seen, or heard, or felt. It asks that we suspend disbelief, refrain from contempt prior to investigation, and to accept, in the words of Shakespeare, that “There are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio, than are dreamt of in your philosophy.” It asks that we believe in a Love greater than we can imagine, a Love that never takes away, but gives, and gives life, constantly and always.
Today, I can write of the miracles I see in life. I see them because I know beyond all doubt that there is
—“a light in the night for all who mourn, the message that death is banished, that life is all there is, and that love is greater than fire, and wind, and time.” – taken from “The Messenger: The Improbable Story of a Grieving Mother and a Spirit Guide” by Helen Delaney.