In early June 1982, I found myself sitting bolt upright in bed. It was the middle of the night and I thought I was dreaming, but here I was with my eyes wide open and it was still happening.
The eerie star-like essence kept on flowing from under the bedroom door, along the ground and now formed a person-sized pillar at the end of my bed. I knew it was Dad. I could feel him.
As I stared at the essence, I was enveloped in a reassuring cloak of love and security, and for the first time since he’d died a few days ago, that awful, brittle fear melted away. It seemed that Dad’s spirit had deliberately come to me to soothe me.
I became strangely peaceful and fell asleep.
My sister, Katy, was staying over, but didn’t stir. She was back with me in the attic bedroom we used to share as children.
Now an 18 year old teenager myself, the room was all mine. Katy had left home to get married six years before and since then I’d painted the walls chocolate brown and put a mattress on the floor under the alcove.
My mechanical genius boyfriend, John, had rigged up an extra speaker out of an old oil can so my ancient LP player would sound better.
We would burn incense and lay around listening to Genesis and Pink Floyd. It was the 80’s and there weren’t many other ‘hippies’ of our age, but we were happily retro together, feeling like we’d been born 10 years too late.
John was intense and keenly intelligent and didn’t seem to quite fit into our plain old Scottish backwater world. The music we loved was our religion – opening our consciousness to other dimensions and posing questions about the meaning of life.
More than one medium ventured that John had been a Tibetan Buddhist monk in his last life. Certainly his dark hair, broad face and slightly slanting eyes hinted of Tibetan, but he was all Scot in this life.
On my bedroom walls, the Donny Osmond and George Best posters had long been replaced by pictures of fairy goddesses and mythical creatures. And there was also a cut-out picture from a magazine I’d been given by a Hari Krishna in town one day.
What a Hari Krishna was hoping for in Paisley (a ‘seen better days’ town near Glasgow) is anyone’s guess, but for some reason I accepted his magazine and found one of the pictures in it to be strangely compelling. Up on the wall it went.
The image was of a ‘cycle of life’ – a depiction of an Indian man being born, aging and dying, drawn clockwise round the page like the numbers on a clock.
At the top he was a baby, then a toddler, then a child and then getting older and older until he died and became a baby again. I loved the exotic Indian poetry of the picture, and somehow it spoke to me even though I couldn’t put its meaning into words.
I so loved having my own space in the attic room away from it all. Although I had a happy family life, I relished time on my own.
If it hadn’t been for Dad’s poor health, I’d have moved into digs while I studied psychology at university in nearby Glasgow. But I wanted to stay at home and support Mum and Dad, especially now that both Katy and my older brother, Jim, had flown the nest.
It wasn’t an easy time with Dad in hospital, but Mum was a tower of strength. She worked full time (which involved extensive travel), looked after the house beautifully, honoured her singing engagements as best she could and spent most evenings visiting Dad.
But even Mum wasn’t invincible. In the winter of 1981 a grumbling health problem became acute and she was taken into hospital.
This led to Dad’s final hospitalisation too. His condition wasn’t good and he needed care. He certainly couldn’t manage without Mum.
The next few weeks were bleak. With Mum and Dad both in hospital, I felt very alone when I came down with a nasty flu.
Thankfully, this phase was short lived. I got better and Mum recovered well and was soon home again. Dad, however, never made it out of hospital.
The evening before he died, it happened that my brother, sister, and I were all visiting Dad together. Mum was delayed and would see him later on her own.
We found Dad restless and a slightly delirious. We hadn’t seen him like that before and were puzzled, but we didn’t guess what it meant. None-the-less, we all said goodbye with special tenderness. It was to be our last.
The next day, on the morning of 4th June 1982, Mum woke me in my attic bedroom with a call from downstairs. “I’ve just heard from the hospital”, she said, “Your Dad’s condition is deteriorating.”
Half way through the 20 minute journey to the hospital, I suddenly doubled up with an inexplicable pain across my body. It only lasted for moments, but felt like a signal.
When we arrived we were ushered into a waiting room. “I’m sorry to tell you”, the nurse said to my Mum gently, “your husband has just passed away”. Shock hit me like a great crashing wave.
My sister, Mum and I were shown to Dad’s bedside. The curtains were parted and I struggled to comprehend what I saw. He wasn’t there! My Dad was just not there!
Sure there was an inert shell that resembled what my Dad had been, but this was not my Dad! I had never seen a dead body before and now, in that instant, I understood that it is pure spirit alone that brings life to our bodies
I wasn’t drawn to the empty waxwork lying on his hospital bed. Instead I stood back and looked up. I could feel Dad all around us in the air.
It was as though I was breathing him, floating in him, drinking him. It was a draft of heady, intoxicating bliss. Dad was free, he was everywhere!
Back in the waiting room, the atmosphere of spiritual intensity was expanding until it filled every space. It was as though molecules of sublime gas were being pumped into the room until the density almost burst down the walls.
Dad’s love was all around us and he was flooding us with his presence. I looked out of the window, awestruck and suppressing an enchanted smile.
What I was experiencing now seemed more real than the talk and interaction that was going on around me. It was a like my camera lens on life had been re-focussed to a different dimension.
My ‘normal’ reality had receded to the background whilst a vivid supernatural reality was sharply present instead. I’d never known anything like it before and yet it seemed strangely familiar. It was wonderful. It was home.
June 4, 2012 | Categories: Awareness, Death and dying, metaphysics | Tags: communicating with the dead, death, ghost, life after death, metaphysics, spirit, spiritual experience, spirituality, vision | 1 Comment