Today we head up to Toledo to pick up half of Kayla’s belongings that she has there in preparation for the end of the school year in three weeks (Yay!). That means 6 hours in the car. Ty and I never let these opportunities go by without trying to do some research/learning/healing on the trip. On the way up and on the way back we listen to two Podcasts- 2-½ hours total. Both Podcasts feature mothers whose children have transitioned way too soon. One mother’s son was six years old when he was murdered at Sandy Hook Elementary. The wild thing is he seemed to know something ominous was coming. He even drew a picture of the shooter days before the shooting. His actions saved 9 other kids. While the shooter was reloading, he yelled for the other kids to run while he stayed and tried to protect the teacher. The other mother’s son was diagnosed with a rare, terminal illness at ten and passed when he was 16. So, one sudden and one with lots of warning. One thing they have in common though is both mothers were in touch with their spirituality long before their children passed.
Another thing they have in common now is both firmly believe that their children’s early transitions were not accidents and were not punishments from God. Actually, I misspoke. Both have gone beyond believing to knowing. The mother of the sixteen year old said she used to believe, now she knows. Both have seen many signs from their children since their transition and both are in communication with their children to this day. Both have dedicated their lives to carrying on what their children started when they were here and feel that they were a team who came in together with this plan. One of the mothers said she thanks her son for agreeing to play this role, the one who had the terrible illness that ended up robbing him of his ability to control his body. He couldn’t speak, he couldn’t even move at the end. But, she says she knows that she has played similar roles for him in past lives, so they are even.
The mother of the boy murdered at Sandy Hook told a story that brought a tear to my eye (well maybe more than one tear and it was both eyes). Just a week or so after he crossed over, she was on a trip with her surviving older son, a quick get-away to try to do some healing. Her son who had crossed kept sending her very strong signs on the plane trip down. She thought that maybe he was hanging around her and her older son to make sure they were OK and she wanted to give him permission to go where he needed to go. So, she said “Jessie, I want you to go to the arms of Jesus. You don’t need to stay here to take care of J.T. and me. If you can be both places at once, that’d be cool. But, otherwise, go to the arms of Jesus and we will meet you there when it’s our time.” The reason this struck me so hard is that I told Shayna the same thing in July of last year. I remember being on a walk when I did it. Not in those exact words, but the same thought, the same desire for her to go do what she needed to do. It was the hardest thing I ever had to say to Shayna.
Listening to these mothers’ stories helps me. It reinforces some sense of purpose in this. It lets me know that I am not alone in my loss. And, if they can make it, there is hope for me to make it too. I liked that they did not deny they still have bad days, occasional anger and sadness. Believing or even knowing that you planned this makes it easier, but it doesn’t make it easy. It’s still damn hard.
I can’t say I’m to the point of knowing the way these two women seem to know (and why is it always women BTW?). I’m 95-99% there. I very strongly believe that Shayna, Ty, Kayla and I planned this before we came. I believe we have been a family before and will be again. There is a plan in all of this and I knew it and I agreed to it. Just like the main character on Blindspot. Jane Doe is a woman who wakes up in Times Square covered in tattoos. She has no memory of who she is or how she got there. She has no idea who put the tattoos on her, but they are highly detailed and seem to be of great significance. What we find later in the show is she planned this herself. She agreed to this mission, but part of the mission was having her memory completely erased.
One day the four of us will get together and debrief on the mission. My job, if I choose to accept it, is to keep going and complete the mission.