About a half hour ago my printer spontaneously circled as if to print a document, but none had been requested. Whenever something like this occurs, being so in tune to spiritual happenings, I sat back to wonder what this was about.
After asking out loud for clarity, it occurred to me that on this day thirty-six years ago I lost the first person who ever meant anything to me. The first person who had made such an impact on my life and who, unknowingly, would usher me into this field of study and my profession.
At the tender age of 12, while he was 15, the nephew of my neighbor and I became close friends and he ultimately became the first ‘crush’ I experienced. And while Paul and I were looked upon as ‘forbidden’ because of the differences of our age, he was such a wonderful guy and friend who I cared for deeply.
We’d play Iron Butterfly’s songs and scream the lyrics across the room, help me babysit little ones, watch him study the guitar and try to master difficult songs, taught me wonderful dance steps and just had lots of fun laughing at his funny jokes. And like teenagers do, we stayed on the phone much too long and wrote silly letters to each other.
As fate would have it, he and his family moved away and we became penpals back then. Both he and I went on to meet other wonderful people, but his life would forever impact mine a few years later.
On this day, April 14, 1974 Paul was hit broadside and killed by a drunk driver at the tender age of 19 while pulling out of his driveway. I knew he died in the late afternoon, but when the printer circled at 4:35pm something made me believe it could have been just then.
So I sat back in my chair and just had this simple conversation with him as if his spirit was surrounding me at this very moment. And even all these years later, I filled up with tears because I can still see him in the coffin and how paralyzed I was sitting on the sofa in the funeral home looking at a person who had meant so much to me and it was not registering as to how he could possibly be dead at 19.
Over the years I have wondered how his family had been and what all became of them. I can only imagine how it affected his parents whom I didn’t get to see again.
But this little sign I believe he sent to me today had in its own way comforted me and reminded me that not only has he not forgotten me, but that no matter where we go in life, the people we love and have lost will always shown themselves to us. Their spirits live on.
This lovely, simple confirmation and remembrance today, for me, though bittersweet, reassures me that there is something after this life which we will all reach. And one day we will be greeted by all those who went on before us and when that happens what a heavenly party we’ll have!