Please forgive any errors from the transcription software. I just wanted to get this down and don’t have a lot of time to spend cleaning it up.

Brian Smith 0:01
Hey there, I wanted to document something happened.

I want to start last week I’m recording this on Wednesday, April 7, 2021. So last week and the reason I with last week, a lot of things in my life seem to have foreshadowing. I think it happens to everybody. We just a lot of times aren’t aware of it. Seemingly random events will happen. And then later on, they’ll start to make sense as we look at them retroactively.

Last week, I had a conversation with someone. They said, that spirit seems to wake us up at three o’clock in the morning with messages. We were joking about how spirit wakes us up in the middle of the night. I said, “No correction, it’s four o’clock.” So that was the first conversation I had, I was joking, because I tend to get a lot of downloads/inspirations about four o’clock in the morning, I’ll be awakened and I cannot get back to sleep because I’ve got all these ideas running through my head.

The other thing that happened last week, there was a meme on Facebook, a random meme. It was about rich people, showers and how these showers a lot of times are open, they have no doors on them. They’ve got multiple showerheads, or they’ve got waterfalls, or whatever. I made the comment that when our contractor put in our shower, and when we remodeled our bathroom, he wanted to leave it open. He did not want to put a door on he said it would save us money or something. And I said no, I live in Ohio, it’s cold, I would rather have the shower closed. So I wanted to shower door put on him. So we did put a door on it.

These are the two conversations that I had last week, but didn’t relate to each other whatsoever. And neither seemed to have any real significance. So fast forward to four o’clock in the morning on Monday. I’m lying in bed, I’m asleep. I’m in the middle of a dream, a pretty peaceful dream, I think. And I hear this huge crash. I mean, just like tremendous, loud crashing sound. And I had no idea what it was I’m startled, I jumped in bed. And I look over and my wife is still asleep. So I’m thinking well, it must not have have been in the real world. It must have been in my dream, because it didn’t wake her up. So I’m trying to get back to sleep and I’m lying there. And I hear this noise coming from our bathroom. And it sounds like, all I could think of at the the time it sounded like a pipe had burst because it sounded like water were spraying or something. And so I’m like, okay, there’s something going on in the bathroom. I heard this crash, maybe a pipe burst. But pipes, you know, they’re not under high pressure in your house. And I don’t typically burst and make a lot of noise. And so I didn’t know what was going on. But I thought I need to go check it out. So I get out of bed, I opened up the bathroom door and there is glass all over the bathroom. I mean literally spread from one end to the other. The shower door had exploded. That was a sound that I heard. And if you’ve ever broken like that type of tempered glass, you know, it kind of spiders out and it makes us cracking noise kind of like the ice on the lake when it starts to warm up and starts to melt I guess. So this noise went on for probably five or 10 minutes after the door exploded all the pieces were breaking in even smaller pieces. So that’s the noise I was hearing from my bed. So obviously, you know this guy got a bit cleaner to do now as I’m cleaning this thing up. And I was thinking about how I got into, you know the thing that four o’clock in the morning it was it when I looked at the clock when I woke up after I heard the noise when I finally looked at the clock, it was 4:01 it was right after four o’clock. So I’m thinking isn’t this interesting? This conversation about spirit communicating those four o’clock in the morning, I had a conversation about the shower door and how I didn’t I wanted to shower door. But it wasn’t you know, the, the contractor tried to talk me out of it. So the conversation about the shower door and then the shower door A few days later explodes at four o’clock in the morning. So I thought well, this would be an interesting experiment. I have a lot of friends who are mediums, a lot of friends who are intuitive. So I thought I wonder if First of all, I wonder if this might be a message from spirit, there might be some significance. So I wondered about that. And I thought could somebody pick up on this now this is a very unusual event. A lot of times people in the spirit world would communicate to us by turning on lights, you know by electronic things a TV coming on and off, you know smoke alarms going off things of that nature. don’t typically think of things like something exploding like the shower door that but that it’s put this out there and see what will happen. So I put out a Facebook post and I tagged a bunch of mediums that I know some kind of celebrities, some not so well known. So I tagged them all I said something happened at four o’clock in the morning. Can anybody tell me what happened if there’s any significance to it?

Unknown Speaker 4:52
Now,

Brian Smith 4:52
frankly, most of the mediums I know that I tagged are very very busy. A lot of them are not on Facebook much so that no Buddy responded. So I gave it a day and nobody responded. Few people that are some of my friends were intuitive. They made some guesses. And frankly, none of the other guesses were very good or they weren’t. They were guesses. I could tell they were guesses. And that’s okay. That’s fine. Because it’s this is like a very unusual thing. So, I have a friend, her name is Carolyn clapper. She’s a medium she is fantastic. One of the best mediums I know. And I know she’s out on Facebook much these days, she’s going through some personal things. This is not on Facebook much these days. And I decided to reach out to her by text. And we don’t really ever text that much. We talked through Facebook, we talked on the phone or whatever. So I sent her a text. And I said, You know, I realized she probably hadn’t seen what I posted. And so I said, you know, something happened, you know, you have any ideas of what’s going on. So think about Carolyn, I kind of smile as I say this, I don’t think I’ve ever had a conversation with her less than an hour. Carolyn is not a Magnier Point A to Point B person. So our conversations are kind of like all over the place. So it’s this conversation. I really wish I could have documented it better, but it just can’t happen with Carolyn, she gave me a fantastic reading a few years ago, the first thing she ever did for me, and she’d asked me not to record it. And it’s it’s the best reading I’ve had ever by far. But unfortunately don’t have a record. So she and I start texting back and forth. And she says the first one, she got a couple of things. She was like, these are just again, these are in fact connected to this. But she said, someone get hurt, because Yay, a baby’s coming. There’s a baby coming. And I’m like, well, that would be a miracle. And she says no, not you. And I said okay, and she said, I think it’s a cousin. So it’s interesting. My nephew, which is Shane, his cousin, his his wife is due in a few days. So my mind immediately goes to Nicholas and his baby is coming in. It’s been a few days, a few weeks. And she goes now that your uncle’s coming in my uncle just passed away a few weeks ago. And so your uncle’s coming, it’s connected to your uncle. And then I realized that his his daughter, my cousin Milan is also due in a few days or a few weeks. And this is her first child. So Carolyn gets this. So then she starts asking me about my house because Carolyn can kind of see what’s going on in your house when you’re talking to her. It’s weird. So she’s asking about the way our house is laid out. She says do you have like a big hallway? And I said, Yeah, we do have a foyer as you come in. So is there a big picture hanging above the stairs? And I said Yes, there is. She said, Well, Shane has been trying to move that she’s trying to tilt that. She says is there another big picture at the top of the stairs. There is another big picture of Shana at the top of the stairs. And this is interesting because she’s talking about the layout of my house. And she’s talking about where the family or the living room is in relation to the stairs. But my bedroom is in relation to the stairs. And everything she’s saying is kind of backwards. It is weird to say things backwards, she would say left and it was right, she’d say right, and it was left but it was consistent. So she was apparently saying things kind of in reverse. Just a little aside. So I’m just like did something. Do you have a bathroom off of your mask after your bedroom? I said, Yeah, we do. And I realize a lot of people do. But the people that live in older houses don’t a lot of times. So yeah, like we do have a bathroom for our bedroom. And she said you know Shane has taken me to the bathroom. And she’s showing me there’s a double sink and with a double sink and she’s showing me two mirrors. And with two mirrors one over each sink and she’s she’s standing in the first mirror and she’s looking at you show me yourself in the mirror and she’s showing me the mirror cracking. And Carolyn light explained to me she asked Shana did she cracked the mirror and Shana said no. So then she asked me if there’s a toilet, you know, that’s in the nscs says there’s a shelf above the toilet. And I was like, No, she said, Okay, well, I’m getting a feeling of something crashing, I’m getting the feeling of water. And she said, so I’m thinking that maybe a shelf fell. And I was like, well, I wasn’t really sure. She said did something crash, you know? And I said, Yeah, that would be an understatement. You know, there was something was a big crash. So she goes, You know, I think something crashed. And then she asked me if we had a glass shower, and I said yes, we have a glass shower. And she said, you know, is it shaped like is it a weird shape, like a custom shape and it is our shower is tile on two sides, the sides that are against the walls, and then it’s glass and it’s a huge glass doors, probably seven feet tall, I think at the highest point and arcs down and there’s another arc on the other side. It’s hard to describe, but it’s custom and there’s there’s two sides of the glass and there’s a half wall that’s tile. So Carolyn’s describing the way the shower looks like it’s a custom shower. It’s got a weird shaped door. There’s a metal handle on the door and we have this big kind of fancy metal

handle that went through the door actually. So she said Shayna showed me the shower. She said she’s trying to she’s trying to turn on the water. She’s trying to she said turn on lights. She says nice, you’re in the shower. She’s just spinning around and she’s spinning, and her heads back to spinning as fast. You can’t just like saying I’m free or something. And meanwhile, Carolyn’s also in this person, this was stuff about my dog, and other conversations. She also tells me a story about a light bulb that exploded in her bathroom. I guess it was last week, and she said this light bulb exploded in the bathroom. So when she said that my mind went to exploding glass, and again, we’re talking about the bathroom. The other thing that’s really weird, I think two things I forgot to say. When she said that, we have two smart bulbs in our bedroom that are text our Alexa, they both stopped working simultaneous last week, and I cannot get the pin to connect to the Alexa anymore. They still come on, but they just won’t connect to the night. They won’t connect smart bulb anymore. So I haven’t replaced so so that was an interesting coincidence. The other thing is, as the class was breaking, this is going back. Not being linear. I had a fish tank I had to throw out last week and I had a temporary glass bottom and I hit it with a sledgehammer. And it just did that ripple that crackle thing which I again happened with the with the shower door. And I just threw that out last week. So the garbage people I went to what’s with this guy now the broken glass. So anyway, back to what Carolyn was saying. So she says Santa’s spinning around and spinning around and spinning around so that she hits up Do you have a shelf in your shower? Yes, we have a shelf and she said you have shampoo bottles and stuff on the shelf. We do. We have shampoo bottles on the shelf, it’s a built in shelf. So she thought that shampoo bottles might have been knocked off and actually ironically but the only thing that wasn’t knocked off when this shower door came down. The crash was so hard that we have a tile floor it chipped the tile floor in two places. And then we have cleaning products that were in the spa by my shower Those were all knocked over so she says I you know she said I’m getting like the feeling of like a tornado just like a tornado went through there. So this is what she kind of put together so it was you know the class cracking the mirror which Shana showed her that but she said No I did not break the mirror. A pipe exploding or water being turned on in St. And Carol asked her she did floated a pipe or wire turned on and she said no. But the thing is the class the sound I heard sounded like water. It was the shower which was class which is also associated with water Of course. And Carolyn said Shana basically led her like up the stairs which goes to our bedroom, through the bedroom in our bathroom, showed her the mirror showed her the shower, shorter with the shower looked like. So Carolyn got it. Now the thing is funny about Carolyn, if she would not take credit. She said Shayna told me exactly what happened. I wanted to say exactly what happened. But I wasn’t listening to her now Carolyn, or protect your privacy, but she’s got some personal issues going on, you know, some family or some friends that are sick and stuff. So that’s why she hadn’t gotten back to me. And she had a reading coming up. So she was like our like Plus she just woken up. But she told me when she woke up Shana was sending out her bed. Shana comes to her when Shannon wants to give her a message. And Shannon was just hanging around until Carolyn acknowledges her. So when she woke up on Tuesday, Shana was sitting on her bed, I guess saying you need to get back to my father. And as cherylin as Carolyn’s going through all these rabbit trails that we go down was funny. She said, Shane has now got her arms folded, saying now you need to get back to me. So my experiment, I would say was a huge success in and this is a thing that’s interesting to me. You know, I had that conversation about four o’clock in the morning, a couple of weeks or last week, and the conversation about the shower door. And when the shower door exploded at four o’clock in the morning, that next week, I thought there might be some significance to it. So I decided to put it out there, right, I thought this would be a really interesting experiment. And so I’m sorry, I couldn’t document more of it. I do have some of the texts that Carol and I set back and forth. But then Carolyn got so excited. And it was so complicated, that she called me on the phone. And so a lot of it was a phone conversation that I didn’t unfortunately have recorded, I did record a little piece of the end, but I didn’t get her permission. So I’m not going to put it out publicly. But I know she would be she would want me to have it to play to my wife because she really likes to share this stuff with Ty, so I’ll share that with her. But um, I just wanted to let you guys know that this stuff is very real. I was going to say nothing our life that happens is random. I don’t know if nothing that happens is random. But a lot of stuff happens in our life isn’t random, and look for these instances of like foreshadowing where something will happen, and then something later on will happen. That’ll be related back to it. And you can see how they kind of tied together. Carolyn said that lightning readings people been telling her things that are going to happen. And she told me some things that are going to happen and we’ll see you know if that happens or not. That would be really, really interesting to see how that plays out.

So again, just wanted to share that with everybody. It was too complicated to try to type out to type out. I might try to transcribe this for people that want to see it typed out but care Arlen clapper, and amazingly there are a lot of them out there. Carolyn was one that happen to get back to me on this. My daughter Shane is an amazing communicator. Carolyn, you know, she said she was saying she thought she’d like Cena down because Cena did a really good job of trying to get across to her. You know what had happened and Carolyn did get all the elements of it. So she got pretty good. She got everything. I was gonna say pretty much everything. She got all the elements of it. So really cool. You guys have a great day.

Transcribed by https://otter.ai

 

When this world becomes overwhelming, I think of Home. Being human is hard because we are both this biological creation and divine simultaneously. We have to remain grounded to take care of the things of Earth. But, if we get too grounded, this world can be overwhelming. So, life is about balance, shifting that perspective when necessary. Staying grounded, but also rising above when necessary.

As I was thinking about what awaits me, this old hymn came to mind. “Turn Your Eyes Upon Jesus”. The line that really struck home was how the things of Earth grow “strangely dim” as we contemplate what awaits us.

I wasn’t moved to listen to the song. The lyrics just kept repeating in my head.

This morning on my walk I decided to listen to Michael Franks, an old favorite from over 30 years ago. That led me to listen to Michael McDonald because they have similar styles. As I was listening to Michael’s greatest hits album, the song “You Belong To Me” began to play. This is how I listen to music, one thing leads to another and I go down a rabbit hole of listening to songs. I went to my iTunes library to find the Carly Simon version of “You Belong to Me” to listen to next. When I typed in “You Belong” this song came up in my library, “Where You Belong” by the Newsboys. The subtitle is… “Turn Your Eyes Upon Jesus”.  It a mashup of their original song with this old standard. I had forgotten this song by the Newsboys even existed.

 

 

Christmas 2020 it’s the sixth Christmas since Shayna passed away in June of 2015. Over the years, I’ve learned not to anticipate Christmas as much as I used to-, whether I’m expecting it to be good or bad. Let’s just wait and see what the day brings is my new motto. Expectations lead to disappointment.

I’ve learned that every Christmas is different. Being a small child and getting excited about the toys I would get faded as I got older. The joy experienced vicariously through my girls waned, even before Shayna passed away. There was no more staying up all night putting their toys together and preparing the milk and cookies for Santa. They began sleeping in on Christmas morning.  Christmas evolved into a lazy day with a special breakfast and seeing a movie in the afternoon.

This year it’s Covid-19. We can’t even get together with our families. Last year we went to Nashville after Christmas and spent a few days hanging out. We thought it might become a new tradition. But, there’s no traveling this year.

Kayla is back with her boyfriend Gabe, who is in Cincinnati for an internship. He couldn’t travel to his home in Michigan because he’d have to quarantine for 14 days on his return. So, she and he spent Christmas Eve and the next two nights with us. It’s a different configuration than we used to have. Kayla has another friend, Darrenton, who would have had to spend Christmas alone for the same quarantine reasons since his family is also out-of-state. So, he joined us for Christmas dinner.

Kayla and I kept our 24-year tradition of getting a “Snow Baby” ornament. Christmas Eve, she, Gabe, and I went to the only place in town that still sells them and chose one.

I took my 7-mile hike even though the temperature had dipped drastically to about 15 degrees for Christmas. It was an eerily solitary walk. I think I saw a total of five cars on the road in an hour and forty minutes. The sky was utterly overcast, without even a hint of sun. But, it felt good to be up early and get my walk in before everyone else rose.

Christmas morning, we had our traditional breakfast of breakfast casserole, sweet rolls, and fruit salad. We also had mimosas for breakfast. We opened presents a little bit later on and watched a couple of movies. I  started watching Life of Brian which I jokingly call a Christmas movie because it’s about the birth of Jesus, and Brian is my namesake.

Of course, for dinner, we had to have deviled eggs; Shayna’s favorites. I made a prime rib, which I did sous vide style. Since we had extra guests, I wasn’t sure if there be enough food, so I also poached some shrimp in garlic and lemon and butter. I made cranberry salad; Kayla’s favorite and my favorite. And we roasted some vegetables. 

 

It was fun having Gabe and Darrenton here. They added some new energy to the experience. We watched movies again on Christmas night and turned in, the dreaded day behind me once again.

 

Tywana and I have decided not to give each other presents for Christmas anymore. We each get what we want when we want it. She usually ramps up her purchases around Christmas. This year she bought a spin bike, a cadence monitor for it, etc., etc.

 

While Kayla was opening her presents she opened a bottle of Eagle Rare meant for me. I was pleasantly surprised because it’s one of my favorite bourbons and I haven’t seen a bottle since exactly a year ago when I found three bottles in a store in Nashville. 

 

Here’s where the sign comes in. I don’t look for signs on big days because I don’t want to be disappointed. Somehow though it seems Shayna always comes through. I never know what it’s going to be. It could be an electrical glitch, a song playing on my iPhone, a cardinal, a coin, a chance encounter with a person, anything really. As I took my walk in the morning, I didn’t see much of anything. It was bitterly cold. Even the squirrels and the birds seemed to be in hiding.

 

Tywana hands me another box. I remind her that I didn’t buy anything for her and I open it. It’s a bottle of Blanton’s single barrel bourbon.

 

Let me explain why this is so amazing. A few weeks ago I discovered a Facebook group that has the sole purpose of posting what they’re selling at Buffalo Trace that day. Buffalo Trace is a distillery in Frankfort Kentucky a couple hours from where we live. The products are highly sought-after. Many of them you just can’t buy as in you cannot find them. In the gift shop each day they sell some of their hard to find products. But, it’s random. You never know what they are going to have. So every day someone posts what they have for the day so you can make the trip and have a shot at getting it. I just discovered this group about a month ago. I told Tywana one day when they had Blanton’s I was going to get in the car and drive down. I’ve never had bottle of Blanton’s. When I lived in Lexington over 20 years ago, it was readily available but more than I wanted to spend on a bottle of bourbon. The last couple of years I’ve had my eye out for it but never saw it on the shelf. 

 

I told Ty about the group and she asked why I didn’t have her brother get a bottle for me. He only lives about 20 minutes away from Frankfort and could get it pretty easily. I knew it would be a mad rush before Christmas to get a bottle. So, I decided to wait until after Christmas to make the trip. 

 

So, here I am looking at this bottle of bourbon I’ve been wanting for years and just found out a few weeks ago I might have the chance to get. I take it out of the box and look at the details. Each bottle is bottled from a single barrel. So, the warehouse and even the shelf the barrel was on is printed on the bottle. What’s also on the bottle is the “dump date”. 

 

The dump date is the day the barrel is dumped to be bottled. Some people spend a lot of time looking for specific dump dates- their birthday, an anniversary, things like that. As I look at the dump date, it hits me. It was bottled 11-3. November 3rd, the day of our anniversary. Even more, it was dumped 11-3-2020, the very day of our 30th wedding anniversary. There’s my sign!

 

Christmas Day is over. Kayla and her boyfriend stay. We have nachos for dinner on Saturday and watch the Disney/Pixar movie Soul. It’s that weird limbo week between Christmas and New Year’s when everyone is usually off of work. But, since no one can go anywhere due to Covid, Kayla isn’t taking off of work. Ty’s not working right now. So, I figure on Monday I’ll just get back to the grind.

 

Soul is a fantastic movie about the Journey of the soul. I love the fact that there are no religious overtones to it at all. It matter-of-factly presents how a is formed, how it progresses, and about a life’s purpose. There is a great deal in there about the astral plane and being in your zone. They touch on soul guides. The animation is out of this world. After that, because I got in Disney+ to get Soul Kayla noticed that Inside Out was available. Inside Out came out just a couple of weeks after Shayna passed away.  Tywana and I saw it at the theaters.  We saw it just to get out of the house. But, it was too soon. I just sat in the dark and cried the whole time because I could not get my mind off of Shayna. I felt like I didn’t get much out of the movie. Then, I couldn’t bring myself to watch it again over these last five years because it reminded me too much of that time right after Shayna transitioned. 

Kayla said she wanted to watch it. So, I sucked it up, put on my big boy pants, and watched.  I’m glad I did. Inside Out is about no emotions and how emotional development works. It’s extremely deep like all Pixar movies- ostensibly for children but touching being human on a level that is surprising.

Monday, January 4th, Kayla went back to her place. She put away her Snow Babies. I have to admit I’m a little sad that Christmas is over. We couldn’t go to the theater. So, we brought the theater to us. We had fantastic meals. I got my first ever bottle of Blanton’s bottled on the day of my 30th anniversary.

New Year’s Day has now come and gone. We did a four-hour Zoom with our neighbors. Every year for the past 23 years we’ve spent New Year’s Eve with the same couples. First, it was having our children do sleepovers in the living room while we rang in the New Year. This year, because of Covid, we thought we’d miss out. But, we decided to see what it was like to get together over Zoom. We started at 9:30. Finally, around 1:30 AM we all decided to sign off. While we couldn’t be together physically, our spirits were together and we rang out 2020 and rang in 2021 with joy in our hearts.

2,000 days

48,000 hours

5.479 years

That’s how long it’s been since my life changed forever. June 24th, 2015 was the day that my daughter Shayna Elayne left this Earthly plane.  Today is December 14th, 2020

This morning I woke up and thought about how things have changed since June 24th, 2015.

I got up, and I looked at my blog that I started amazingly the day after Shayna passed. Something told me to document this journey similar to what C.S. Lewis did in his book “A Grief Observed”. I didn’t know why I was doing it. I just had to. Then, just a week later, I made the blog public.

This post gets filed under several categories- milestones because it’s 2,000 days since Shayna passed, signs because I got a sign today, and podcast for the obvious reason.

First the sign. Today has been 2,000 days since Shayna passed. My YouTube channel has been creeping up on 2,000 subscribers for a while. Today, the channel hit exactly 2,000 subscribers.

 

2000 days

48000 hours

5.479 years

That’s how long it’s been since my life changed forever. June 24th, 2015 was the day that my daughter Shayna Elayne left this Earthly plane. Today is December 14th, 2020

This morning I woke up, and thought about how things have changed since June 24th, 2015.

I got up, and I looked at my blog that I started amazingly the day after Shayna passed. Something told me to document this journey similar to what C.S. Lewis did in his book “A Grief Observed”. I didn’t know why I was doing it. I just had to. Then, just a week later, I made the blog public.

As I read those early entries, the whole first week A.S. (time is now measured as before Shayna’s passing and after) came flooding back.

I woke up on what I thought was an ordinary day. I took a 3 or 4-mile walk. I came back and sat down to work in my office. Then, I heard Tywana call to me saying something was wrong. I remembered the feeling that my wife and I had when we found Shayna in her bedroom that morning. She wasn’t cold yet. She couldn’t be dead. My mind could simply not accept reality. I recalled the feeling of total disbelief, the feeling of shock, crying out to God, screaming her name thinking I could somehow shout loud enough to be heard across the Void and call her back to me.

The memories of falling to my knees before getting into the police car came back. I remembered my neighbor coming over and asking if everything was all right and me not even being able to form the words to answer her. The police officer who gave me a ride to the hospital as my wife rode in the ambulance with Shayna, him offering to pray and me not even having a prayer to offer.

I called my parents and asked them to pray. I remember Dad saying that once you lost a child things were never the same. “Why did he say that?” I thought. “I haven’t lost a child.” Shayna will be OK. She has to be OK.

I knew Shayna had not taken a breah in an impossibly long time. Yet, I clung to the idea that she would be all right. This could not happen to us. We sat in the waiting room with friends who showed up to support us. Then, the chaplain came in. I knew this was bad. I didn’t want to see the chaplain. I wanted to hear a doctor tell me she had started breathing and wanted to see us.The chaplain wanted to pray. I could not stop him. He prayed for God’s will to be done. I countered his prayer. “To hell with God’s will, just give me my daughter back.”
When the doctor finally came in and told us that they have pronounced Shayna dead I immediately had the thought that that’s it my life is over. My life will never be the same but immediately followed by the thought that I had to take care of my wife and my other daughter Kayla. That whatever happened, the three of us had to stay together. I knew I had to be there for them. I held Tywana and committed to her that I would be there for her; not having any idea what that would look like.

Walking out of the hospital that day the parallel to the day that Shayna was born 15-½ years earlier struck me. We walked into Good Samaritan Hospital in January 2020 empty-handed and walked out with Shayna. We walked into West Chester Hospital on that fateful day hoping to walk out with Shayna and we walked out leaving her body there.That walk to my brother’s car was the hardest walk I’ve ever taken.

Here I sit 5.48 years later. 48,000 hours later, 2000 days later. I never had any idea that I would still be here. In those early days after her passing whenever anyone said anything to me about the future if it was more than a week in the future, I’d get angry because I could not even imagine living a week without my daughter being on this planet When people talked about years I’d tell them I had no plan to be here in years.

I’ll be 60 in May which to me seems like an old man and I can’t believe I’m still here. What has happened in the course of that 2000 days nothing short of a miracle.

Some things are still the same. We’re still running our business, Treasured Locks. We still live in the same house. Kayla went back to school right away. She got her undergrad degree and will finish her Masters in a few months.

Something had to change. After Shayna passed I realized very quickly that I had to do something about how I lived my life. I could not just accept where I was. I didn’t want to live. My only motivation for staying here was Tywana and Kayla. That was enough short term. But I knew that I could not just stay here and survive, that I had to somehow seek healing even though healing seemed impossible. I didn’t even want to heal. I thought that to honor Shayna that I should be miserable for the rest of my life. I wanted people to say that after she passed Brian was never the same. I thought that would be a fitting way to show how much she meant to me. I remember going to a grief group and early on and a mother was there and her daughter had passed about 10 years prior. This woman was angry and bitter and I believe she went to the gravesite at least once a week. She talked about how unfair it was her daughter at passing how she was miserable and always be miserable and I realize she was making everybody in the room miserable. You know we can learn from everyone we come across. I learned from that woman that day. Her bitterness and anger taught me something. I learned I didn’t want to be that person. Something different had to happen. So, I started reaching out to people and someone recommended to me that I reach out to a guy named Mark Ireland. I had never heard of Mark Ireland but he wrote a couple of books about the passing of his son Brandon. Mark started a group called Helping parents heal along with Elizabeth Boisson. So I wrote an email to a stranger which is so unlike me to write to a perfect stranger. Mark wrote back and sent me copies of both of his books which I read and which were helpful.

The next May, we planned a vacation for the three of us, Tywana, Kayla, and me. The girls loved going to the beach and Kayla decided instead of going to the beach this time, we would go to the opposite. We decided to go to the desert to Phoenix, Arizona. I had spoken to Elizabeth Boisson at this point. But, I had no idea she lived near Phoenix. Elizabeth happened to be just a few minutes away from where we were staying. So we met Elizabeth for breakfast. Long story short, a little while after that, we decided to start a chapter of helping parents heal in Cincinnati Ohio. That eventually turned into the Helping Parents Heal online Group, which I helped to run for several years growing it up to around 6,000 people.

Meanwhile, in 2019, I took mentorship from a business coach to try to improve Treasured Locks. This was George Kao, a guy I had heard on Suzanne Giesemann’s podcast. Suzanne is a world-class medium and someone I consider a friend. I figured if she was using this guy, he must be good.

A friend sent me a message saying she had run across a life coaching course she thought I’d be interested in. This was strange because I had never mentioned becoming a life coach to her. But, since she’s an intuitive, I trusted her intuition and took the course. I thought it could help with my work with Helping Parents Heal. Then, it dawned on me. The mentorship course I was taking wasn’t for Treasured Locks. I was supposed to launch a new business. In April 2019, almost four years after Shayna passed, I started developing the web page and wrote a short book on Grief.

I wanted to create something short and easy to digest from the perspective of someone who had first-hand experience with child loss. I wanted to share the raw emotions I had felt and what had worked for me up to that point. I took everything I knew and I wrote one big Google Doc and created this book and put it. A couple of months later, I started the podcast.

As I write this, it’s a year and a half or so after I started the podcast and wrote the book. The podcast is approaching 50,000 downloads. I’ve got nearly two thousand subscribers on YouTube. A couple of videos have gone somewhat viral with over 20,000 views.

I am teaching classes. As kind of a sidetrack, I’ve developed a course on racism. I taught a class with Robin landsong this weekend. It’s the second time we have offered it- a new way to look at grief and death along with Robin doing singing medicine for the participants. I’ve done classes with Dr. Terry Daniel. We are finishing one up this coming Sunday. I have spoken at the Afterlife Conference and the Helping Parents Heal Conference. I have hosted a grief panel for the International Association of Near Death Studies.

My coaching and grief guidance work continues to grow. It’s extremely gratifying when a parent or any other griever tells me that my work has helped them.

It seems like recently I’ve been coming across a lot of parents who are early in their grief, and I’m talking about weeks or maybe sometimes a couple of months. I’m grateful that I can remember what those early days/weeks/months were like so that I can relate to what they are going through. It’s nothing short of hell on Earth. I wrote about that in my blog in the early days.

Last week I was teaching the class “10 Life-changing Lessons From Heaven” a book and course about wisdom from near death experiences. The group was all women who have children in spirit. Most of the women there were just a few months in, and I want to address those people.

When I first started this journey, I had no idea that I could ever make it and I certainly didn’t think I’d ever be happy again. I remember looking at people like Elizabeth Boisson and others who had been on this journey longer than I had and thinking I’ll never be that what they are. Frankly, I didn’t even aspire to be what they were. They were joyful and doing fulfilling work. That would never be me.

I talked with a mother just a few days ago who was broken, and I mean totally broken. She had faith in God. She had been through other losses in her life, deaths other than the death of her daughter. But there’s something different about when it’s your kid, and she had lost her faith in God, her faith in the Bible, her confidence in herself. Without that foundation of God and the Bible she didn’t know who she was anymore.

I had just listened to a podcast about the value of despair. It’s the point most, if not all, of the saints have reached. It’s known as the Dark Night of the Soul. Even Jesus experienced this in the Garden of Gethsemane as he sweated blood tormented by the thought of what laid ahead of him and as he hanged there bleeding on the cross crying out “My God, My God, why has thou forsaken me?”

As I spoke with her, my heart went out to her. But, I saw a saint in the making. I saw someone who had gotten to the point where she was broken wide open, an empty vessel ready to receive. The cracks are the places where the light gets in. She was seeking, asking questions, reaching out for a new view because circumstances ripped her old understanding away.

I was listening to a wisdom book a few days ago. One of the things it said was if you’re climbing a mountain and you feel like giving up; it’s okay to give up. Just keep moving your feet.

This gem resonated with me because I heard it listening to the book while taking my morning walk. I’ve walked every morning for the past several years, going back to before Shayna’s transition. After she transitioned, I turned that walk into a walking meditation. I would imagine that each step was a day. As I left my house, each step brought me closer to the step that would bring me back home. Each day brought me one day closer to the day when I would arrive at Home and see Shayna again. A friend I met on Facebook, Carolyn Clapper, not knowing this, messaged me on Facebook one day saying Shayna had dropped in on her and told her that I was walking trying to catch up with Shayna. That was 100% true. I’m not on step 2,000 on my round trip journey from Home back to Home.

Climbing a mountain or taking a walk, the analogy is the same. I don’t always feel like taking my walk. Many mornings when I first leave the house, I don’t think I’ll be able to do the seven miles. But, as long as I keep putting one foot in front of the other, it doesn’t matter what I feel, I will eventually get to my destination.

In those early days, I didn’t think healing was possible. I didn’t even want to heal. But, I kept taking the steps anyway. Even if you’re like I was and say there’s no way I’m going to possibly heal, just keep doing the things it takes to heal.

To this day I have times I don’t feel like I’ll make it. There isn’t a day that goes by when I don’t long to be Home, NOW. There are times I wake up in the morning my first thought is, “I’m tired. Why do I have to do this again?”

I then do my gratitude practice. I think of three things I’m grateful for, even if it’s as simple as having a nice warm bed. I think of what I need to do today, just today. And, I get up and do it. Doing that enough times has led me to here, 2,000 days later.

The milestones that we go through are opportunities to stop and take stock. Life can only be understood backward but must be lived forward. I thought my life ended that day in the hospital in June 2015. But, our stories never end. It was the end of a chapter. But one chapter closes, and another opens. We think of death as the end of the book. But, even death is just the end of another chapter. Death is the chapter at the horizon that we can’t see beyond. But, trust me, one thing I’ve learned for sure in the past 2,000 days is it’s not the end of the book.

What about you. Where are you on your journey? As I record this, it’s also the close of the weirdest year in the memory of everyone I know; 2020 is drawing to a close. We typically take this time, the New Year, to reflect on where we are and where we want to be. Take some time to reflect on the journey that got you to this point. If you’re going through hell, keep going. And remember what one man can do, another man can do. If I can do this, anyone can.

Today, the day of my mother’s birthday, I received this email from a subscriber to my YouTube channel. Shayna is always up to something.

 

Good evening, Brian:

I hope you and your family had gentle thanksgiving!

I wanted to share something that I saw today on my way home from work, which brought me a moment of joy.

Please know it comes from a place of loving kindness and my intention is to share what I felt was a Shayna “wink” for you, her mom and sister.

I immediately thought of her what I saw this.

Hope it is well received.

Thank you for all that you do. You have been a beacon of light during the most painful, confusing and challenging time in my life, and for my mom as well after losing my brother/her son one year and three months ago.

Have a great evening,

This isn’t so much a sign from Shayna necessarily as a sign from the universe. Or maybe it is a sign from Shayna. You decide.

Yesterday, I saw an ad for an app to create a daemon for myself as in the HBO Series His Dark Materials. After answering some questions, I got a spirit animal that looks a lot like a minx. I snapped a picture of it (see picture below). That’s my daemon and Stevie sleeping in the background.

I played with the app a little and put it away. The next morning, as I took my walk, I found the stuffed animal (pictured) below sitting out by the trash of one of my neighbors. Pretty cool “coincidence”. This type of thing seems to be happening more and more. I noted the synchronicity.

But wait, there’s more. Today I was doing an interview for my podcast. Nicky Alan, the medium was my guest.  After we finished recording, she was talking about how Shayna was coming through as a bright light (Shayna’s name means Beautiful Light) and she said that Shayna is a… wait for it…  a little minx.

Mink mustela vison isle of mull Scotland. Image shot 2008. Exact date unknown.

 

 

 

My friend, Kathy Wyenandt is running for State Senator. This morning is a foggy morning and I take my walk around sunrise, as I always do. There are tons of political signs in the yards now. No big deal. I note which of my neighbors are supporting who and I move along. As I’m headed up a cul-de-sac I walk every day I notice how the sun is shining through the fog into my face. I glance to my left and I see my friend Kathy’s sign in another friend’s yard. And, I notice there is steam/vapor rising off of the sign almost as if it’s on fire. There is a Biden sign right next to it. No such vapor is rising off of that sign.

Immediately, my engineering brain goes to work. It’s foggy. So, the air is saturated with moisture. There’s condensation on the sign. The sun is hitting it from behind, heating it and that temperature change is what’s causing the water to evaporate and creating the vapor. But, here’s the thing. There are dozens of signs I see on my walk every day. I have never seen even one of them doing this. And, the sign right next it, literally a foot away isn’t doing this.

So, I think, maybe this is a “sign” for Kathy. I’m guided to take a quick video of it. I take the video, walk to the end of the cul-de-sac and make the turn to go back. As I pass the sign again, not two minutes later, the vapor is barely noticeable rising off it.

So, I start to think about what it took for this to happen. The fog, the sun at the right angle, the shadow (you can see it in the attached video) so the sun was not hitting the back fo the Biden sign. And, me making that trip up the cul-de-sac at just the right moment when all of these elements came together.

I wonder if it’s a sign Kathy is going to win the election. I don’t know what her chances are. But, I figure this might inspire her. Maybe she can even use it in an ad. I have no idea how she’ll respond. But, I compose a quick Facebook message, attach the video, and I send it off to her.

A few minutes later, as I scroll through my Facebook, I see that today is her deceased father’s birthday and she has posted a tribute to him. That’s when I realize, this was a sign for her, not about the election. It’s a message from her dad.

And, it hits me how spirit works and I am amazed once again. All of these things that had to come together including me following the nudge to send the video to Kathy.

 

I am a host of some of the Helping Parents Heal meetings. I’ve seen Daniel John read before last night and during our interviews, he’s brought through little things about Shayna.

Last night, as I was interviewing Daniel for Helping Parents Heal, he mentioned a sign that Shayna used to give us.He also told my wife that there was something about earrings. She had thought about changing her earrings before the meeting because she thought they were too small to show up on the camera.

I was there just to interview Daniel. But, toward the end of the meeting, he mentioned he could do some readings if we had the time. Since all of the parents love readings, we decided to have one or two.

Earlier in the interview, I mentioned Shayna and he said he had felt her draw close. He mentioned a lamp. I told him that just a couple of hours before I was talking with a client about how signs don’t always stay the same and Shayna had not turned off our bedroom lights much lately.

One of my pet peeves is sitters, in group readings especially, who do not take the evidence for them. I’ve seen mediums struggle to get people to recognize what is for them. However, in my defense, Shayna never comes through in gallery readings. And, as the host, I expected messages for someone else. So, I wasn’t expecting at all Shayna would come through which is why I missed this!

The first thing Daniel mentioned was an M-a name and he specifically said “Matthew”. We don’t have sons. So, I thought this was for someone else. I was thinking of a Matthew in spirit. We have a nephew Matthew, Shayna’s first cousin. They are only a year or two apart in age and were extremely close in life, like brother and sister. Shayna has mentioned Matthew in readings before- almost like a brother. Both are the babies of the family so they share that bond.

Daniel said the number 13 is big. He also mentioned 22. And, he mentioned January. He said numbers are almost never wrong in his readings. Shayna’s birthday is January 13th and her sister’s birthday is on the 22nd. Still, all of this is going right over my head because I’m thinking this is certainly for someone else.

He mentioned a sense of humor. Shayna has an incredible sense of humor, the trickster fo the family.

He mentioned Tigger and said it would be significant. Shayna’s sister LOVES Winnie the Pooh. Her personality is so much like Pooh’s I sometimes call her Pooh. Daniel mentioned bouncing which Tigger is known for and is very, very much like Shayna.

He mentioned something about eyes and specifically, this was not just pretty eyes. Everyone comments about my wife’s eyes, Kayla’s eyes, and Shayna’s eyes. But, Daniel said this was specifically something else something may be wrong with the eyes and they were saying it’s OK. I don’t want to say what this is.  Because while it is public, it’s really not easy to find. But, this is very significant and I know exactly what he was talking about. It’s not something anyone looking anything up would know how to find. Let’s just say there was an issue with Shayna’s eyes that make it a very significant message for me.

He mentioned a police officer and said it was someone close. This I really didn’t pay much attention to because I cannot think of a single police officer in the family with one (long ago and not exactly a police officer) exception. However, my nephew Matthew took his state trooper exam yesterday, the day of the meeting. I did not know this at the time. This is contemporaneous evidence that Daniel could not possibly know other than through a connection.  You could not look this up.

Lastly, he mentioned the movie Gremlins. We have a small dog that Kayla calls gremlin which I always chastise her for because I tell her our dog doesn’t like being called that.

I entirely missed this reading was for us until after the meeting my wife said that Shayna might have been piggybacking and pointed out the connection to Matthew that I didn’t know. Once I went back and looked at it, I realized we could take everything I mentioned above.

So, this is my public apology to my buddy Daniel. I should have picked up on all of this. But, it’s an example of how we can miss what’s right in front of our eyes if we’re not looking for it. Gotta keep those eyes open.

 

Here is the video. The reading starts around 46 minutes.

I don’t know exactly what is happening. Weird stuff has been happening in our house. My iPhone went unresponsive. Then, Tywana’s phone. Then, my iPad. Then, her Fitbit. All just weird random things that were eventually all fixed after several attempts. Kayla’s work laptop stopped working. Then, her personal laptop stopped working. Both were eventually fixed. All things with no explanation. Rebooting, software reinstalls fixed them. If Shayna is sending signs by breaking things, I’ve asked her before to find another way to send signs.

Suzanne Giesemann called Tywana yesterday. Shayna dropped in on her again, as Shayna does. The lights in Suzanne’s house started flickering. Shayna told her to introduce a couple whose child had passed to us. Whenever Shayna drops in on Suzanne she gives her some evidential message to let her know it’s actually Shayna and that she’s still connected to us.

In this case, the message was a big piece of green cloth. She showed it to Suzanne as a current event. Suzanne thought maybe we were buying a pool table covered in green felt. She had no idea what it could mean. Unbeknownst to me, Tywana had spent time the day before looking at green muslin because she was thinking about making a green screen for videoconferencing.

Shayna had her arm around this little girl saying that she had met her across the veil and that she wanted Suzanne to connect her parents to us.

Image by PublicDomainPictures from Pixabay

Today is Shayna’s 20th birthday. When I asked her for a sign this morning, she reminded me she had given me a sign last night. The Alexa in our office suddenly and inexplicably stopped working with the bedroom lights. Just as inexplicably, it started working again.

This morning, I made a YouTube video using an image I use as my screensaver as the still shot for the video. I posted it to Facebook.

A friend asked if anyone knew a life coach she could refer people to. I replied with a GIF of Will Smith raising his hand.

Someone else replied to her post. So I got a notification. I went to look. What I saw was the still image I had used for the YouTube video. As I looked at it, it changed into the YouTube cover image I had used- right in front of my eyes. Then, back to the still image.

 

This is NOT what I replied with. But, it’s what I was able to screenshot.

I shut down Facebook and reopened the app on my phone. This is what I had actually replied with.

I have no idea how she does this.

Happy Birthday, Baby!