In 1993 my mom passed away from breast cancer. The doctor told her she had about a year to live. I was in the military at the time so I decided to take leave in June for 30 days to spend time with her. I bought books to read to her and highlighted areas I thought would interest her. The books were on the afterlife and angels and things to make her feel good and at ease since she knew her days were numbered.
I purchased my airline tickets on a Friday the day before the prices went “sky high” for the springtime and summer ticket sales. On the following Monday in April, an officer came to my barracks room to tell me that my mother had passed away. I told him the story of my ticket purchase and went to exchange them. The ticket office wouldn’t give me a break on the price so I traded them in for a one way ticket. I went to the wake and funeral and felt extra bad because I did not get a chance to spend time with my mom before she passed away.
At the cemetery after the pastor read the Bible and when the service was over, all that attended started to walk away. I turned and took another look at all the flowers stacked against the coffin and asked the pastor if he thought my mom would ever show me a sign. He smiled and said, “You never know”. Just then a flower wreath that was leaning up against the coffin slowly turned like a wheel a few feet to the right. There was no breeze or anything that could have done this. The pastor and I looked at each other and he went white as a sheet. I smiled and said, “Now that’s a sign.”
It made me feel good but I still wasn’t satisfied. It still bothered me that I did not get a chance to see, talk to, or read the books to my mom before she passed away. That night I slept at my mom’s house on the downstairs couch. This was also the house I grew up in before I joined the Service. My sister, who arranged the funeral for my mom and all the other relatives, slept upstairs that night. I could not fall asleep right away and was wide awake because of the jet lag, so in the dark as I lay on the couch I stared at the wall. I tried to close my eyes now and then to force myself to sleep, but it did not work.
One time when I opened my eyes back up for about the tenth time, I saw up on the wall a silhouette of a man and a lady sitting side by side. I looked around the room and at the window and the street light or moonlight or anything else was not doing it. I just thought about my mom the rest of the time until I finally must have fallen asleep.
I woke up the next morning and felt refreshed. I looked around the room as I still lay on the couch because I was too comfortable to get up. The other relatives from upstairs were coming down the stairs and heading into the kitchen back and forth passing the couch. I kept lying on the couch, very comfortable, facing the part of the couch you lean your back on, when all of a sudden I turned and looked in the opposite direction.
I saw, clear as day, my mom walking toward me from where the unlit fireplace was. A man was behind her but he stopped in front of the fireplace like he was just going to wait for her there. My mom looked young and flawless. She was dressed in her favorite violet suit she was buried in but had a black satin skirt on instead of the violet suit skirt. She had her beautiful long red fingernails and was holding a dark purse in front of her so you could notice her fingernails. I looked down and she had on nice nylon stockings and black high heel shoes. Her hair was nice and she had on one of her 1940’s style hats on with a veil.
After giving her the once over and blinking my eyes a lot and thinking to myself, I know I’m not dreaming this, I took a good look at the man waiting for her. He had on a nice business suit and was holding a hat in front of him. I got a good look at his face and saw that it was my father. I looked at my mom’s flawless young face again with her perfect 1940’s style makeup complete with red lipstick and she wasn’t talking but communicated directly to my mind that “everything is alright now and to let everyone know”. My father then smiled and so did she. He was still standing in the distance waiting for her. I kind of wondered why he did not come up to me also, but then remembered when he passed away in 1985, I saw an image of him at my duty station that night when I was working, but that’s another long story. Besides, this was my mother’s time.
Anyway, I turned my head facing toward the other side of the couch again then turned back and my
mom and dad were both gone. I look around the room while I’m still laying on the couch and I am still the only one in the room. I go into the kitchen where the other relatives are having breakfast and I ask my sister why my mom was not buried with her violet (purple) skirt on. She asked my how I knew this because she did not tell anyone and since the coffin was closed below her waist at the funeral parlor and flowers were on top of that half no one would know the difference what color skirt she had on. I told her the black satin skirt mom had on looked nice but I just wondered why she didn’t have on her favorite violet (purple) skirt since it was a set with the jacket. My sister then explains how mom picked out the clothes she wanted to be buried in and put them aside in a bag along with the shoes, etc. and hangbag she wanted placed in the coffin.
My sister said the day she took the bag of clothes down to the funeral parlor and got there, for some reason when she opened the bag the violet (purple) skirt was not in there so the black satin slip she had on looked good with the outfit and besides, no one would ever know because the other half of the coffin lid with the flowers on it covered it good. My sister asked me how I knew and I told her that mom had just visited me in the living room and that’s what she was wearing, the purple suit jacket like at the funeral home but with a black satin skirt. Also, she looked like she did in the wedding photo of her and my dad that they kept on thier dresser with the same hat on. My mom was married in a suit because she said “the war was on” and people were getting married at City Hall.
I also told my sister that dad was waiting for her in a business suit like the one in the wedding photo. I told her and all the relatives that were in the kitchen that mom had communicated directly to my mind without her lips moving but I could hear her voice and she told me to let everyone know that “everything is alright now” and then after I turned back around they were not there anymore.
After this incident I felt satisfied and it no longer bothered me that I did not get a chance to see my mom before she died. As I was reading ghost stories on this site tonight, it felt like my mom wanted me to put our story out. I feel that she is smiling right now and she still has that red lipstick on and is still “lookin good”.
One last thing, I went in the closet at my mom’s house with my sister after breakfast and she showed me where mom’s clothes bag was sitting. The violet (purple) skirt was sitting there folded nicely. My sister then said she was in a rush that day so maybe it fell out of the bag. I now live out of state and have my mom’s violet (purple) skirt hanging in my closet. Someday when I die I want to be cremated in comfortable casual clothes so I figure since my brother and sister will probably die before me because they are heavy smokers (if I don’t get hit by a car or anything first) I will place my mom’s violet (purple) skirt in their coffin before the lid is closed and it could be hand delivered to her when she meets them at the “pearly gates” or anywhere else they might meet up… I will someday find out for myself.
As far as my flight back to my duty station, I was able to fly back free because at the airport office, I showed them a copy of the death certificate and they made a copy of it along with my orders and my military I.D. Card. The lessons I learned from this is that life is mysterious and while I am still living, I am going to try and be happy and helpful to others and try and accomplish reaching some goals I have because you never really know the day and time you might not be around anymore and I don’t want to leave any unfinished business if I can help it. I’m running out of space to write so I will tell you the story of my father’s visit later. Until then, have a good rest of your life.
Subject: My Mom
Date: Monday, January 30, 2006 12:37 PM