It was the best concert I had ever seen. We had third row seats to the Cher performance in the early 1990’s. We returned from the concert still buzzing from all the excitement. I turned on the answering service to listen to the messages missed while out and dropped to the floor on my knees.
My boyfriend’s six year old daughter Keri was killed that evening when her mother had she and her eight year old sister in the car with her while impaired. The mother and eight year old survived with severe injuries. It was a tragedy.
Marie was Keri’s great Aunt, my boyfriend’s aunt. I was close with my boyfriend’s entire family. His mother Loraine, Marie’s sister and I had been friends long before her son and I started dating. Although quite a few years my senior, there was no age gap in our friendship.
Preparing for the funeral, I was brushing my hair in the bathroom mirror at Loraine’s house. Still in a fog from sadness, my daughter walked in the bathroom next to me, so I thought. I suddenly remembered my daughter was at the sitter’s and looked directly at the child standing next to me. It was Keri.
I dropped the brush and ran out of the bathroom to Loraine. Quietly I told her what happened. She knew I had certain gifts, but seeing a spirit like she was right there in a full spectrum of color was not one of them. We decided to keep it to ourselves and proceeded to the funeral.
The entire family went back to Loraine’s house. We sat around drinking coffee and talking about Keri. She loved visiting her grandma and helped take care of the foster babies. We laughed, we cried and we hugged.
Loraine heard a noise upstairs and thought one of the babies had wakened so she headed up. I heard my name being called from the top of the stairs and thought Loraine needed some help, I too went up.
Loraine and I stood at the doorway of the room Keri used to stay in when visiting with our jaws literally on the floor. We watched as the mattress on the bed was sinking in then out at a fast pace like someone was jumping on it. Then we heard a loud thump,messing up the throw rug on the floor, then the bouncing started on the bed again.
We called for Loraine’s husband and grown children, Ron, Bob and Kim. They came running up the stairs and stood in shock as we did.
Keri’s spirit was jumping on the bed and then falling on to the floor and getting up to jump on the bed again as she did when visiting. We all cried when it stopped and thought we truly had been blessed to have witnessed this.
I was visiting again a few days later. Loraine went up the stairs to get one of the babies she fostered. When she didn’t come back down I went up to see what she was doing. Loraine was sitting in the rocking chair in the nursery looking up, mesmerized at the ceramic baby mobile hanging above the crib. It was swinging back and forth with no one touching it. We had made many paper mobiles for the nursery to dress it up, but they were still. Only the ceramic one was going strong.
There was no breeze in the room nor an open window. If there were, the paper mobiles would have been moving, but they were not. Keri loved to play with the babies in the nursery, she would help put them down for their nap and move the mobiles to entertain them.
Keri visited Loraine’s house often through the year and her presence was always welcome. Then one day it all stopped. We waited day after day for some kind of weirdness, but nothing came. Loraine decided to mark the last day we heard Keri on the calendar and it happened to be Ascension Day. When we looked up what it meant we broke down in tears. It is when the spirits who have passed on are taken to heaven.
My boyfriend Ron and I eventually broke up and I headed west to another province for an employment opportunity.
It had been close to 10 years since Loraine and I had seen each other. I received a phone call from her when she saw my picture in the newspaper for being in New York during 9/11. Our small town had written a story on it and the city picked it up to publish in their paper as well.
I went for a visit to a flashback of memories in Loraine’s home. She told me of the lung surgery that had almost killed her a year before when died on the operating table for a few minutes. Loraine explained how she saw a bright light and behind the light Keri was waiting for her, she was a beautiful woman now. Keri told Loraine how wonderful it was to grow up in heaven and how happy she was. She told her grandmother she would see her again one day, but it wasn’t today.
Loraine came back to us.
Losing a child is the most difficult experience to endure in life, “knowing” God takes our children and gives them a heavenly life and that we will see them again gives us some comfort.