Grief 2 Growth Podcast- Paige Lee- Choose to Believe

Paige’s spiritual awakening came abruptly and forcefully after her 23-year old son, Bryan, was brutally murdered in September 2008. Just as the only world she’d ever known was shattered, a new world opened. A world filled with Hope, Spirit, and Love; a world that allowed her not only to continue having a relationship with her son but a world that opened her own true self into being.

In this interview Paige and I discuss some very tough questions that people ask after their children have passed. This conversation may be upsetting for some.

If you have thoughts about suicide or are planning suicide, please seek help. The National Suicide Hotline is: 800-273-8255




Brian Smith 0:00
Hey everybody, this is Brian Smith back with another episode of reef to growth and today I’ve got with me Paige Lee Paige is another fellow shining light parent. And if you don’t know what that is, we’ll talk about that in a moment. But I want to enter I’m gonna read her introduction and then we’ll get started. Page of spiritual awakening came abruptly and forcefully after a 23 year old son Brian was brutally murdered, murdered in September 2008. Just as the only world she’d ever known was shattered, a new world opened a world filled with hope, spirit and love a world that allowed her not only to continue having a relationship with her son, but a world that opened her own true self into being pages dedicated to helping people have experienced a profound loss, face and release their emotions and find a way to then joyfully connect with their loved one in spirit, says the offer author of a new book choose to believe a story of miracles healing in the afterlife. In the book, she shares her after death experiences with their son, Brian, and outlines a detailed pathway toward healing, all the while encouraging the reader to make their own connections with a loved one after death. So with that, I want to welcome to grief to growth, Paige Lee. Thanks, Brian. I’m so happy to be here. Thank you. Yeah, it’s great to have you here and to meet you. And just to let everyone know what is shining light paradas in case they don’t know what it is. What that is, that’s a that’s a parent who has a child in spirit. And we don’t we don’t say that our child children are dead because we don’t believe they’re dead. We don’t believe that they died, but that they are in spirit, and that they are shining lights and that we can become shining lights and sounds like Paige you. You’ve already made that transition after the after the passing of your son. Thankfully, yes, thankfully, blessedly I was led on that path. Yes. Like instantly lead on that path. Yeah. Well, tell me about Brian and tell me about your path. Okay. All right. Um, I just love this beautiful picture of Shayna behind you. So what a beautiful and I was reading your blog, by the way, and that her name means beautiful light. Is that right? Is that? Is that what that here you are a shining light parents. So you know, anyhow, yeah. Connection.

Paige Lee 2:01
Brian, oh, what a sweetheart Brian was 23 when he died, I do say when he died because his physical body did die. So but I but I do believe that he still lives if that makes sense. But his spirit lives only the body ever dies.

And he was at school at University of Southern California. He had finished his economics degree. So he had started at West Point. Let me just tell the whole story. It started at West Point, he left after a year and a half on an honorable discharge because he just flat out didn’t like it and wasn’t for him. He transferred to Boulder, Colorado for a semester while he waited to hear back from USC. They accepted him. So he went to USC, he finished his economics degree there. And then he immediately enrolled and was accepted into the film school at USC. So he was super excited, really wanted to kind of move out of the economics business world and into the more creative arts, you know, be a director, world. And he was one semester I was going to say six months one semester away from graduating when he was killed. So

so you know, it was devastating. Tourists apart. I mean, of course, all of that. He was my only birth child. I do have two beautiful stepchildren. I had two babies that I miscarried and a baby that was stillborn. So for me, you know, Brian was my one and only my husband and I married into that in 1998. So he had been a big part of Brian’s life as well. So you know, it just rocked us. It rocked us just tore me apart.

He was killed in a random act of violence, walking home one evening, from a bar that he’d been at with two friends and they’d had a couple drinks and they were walking home. And it was a new apartment, and they weren’t familiar. It was just off campus. And, you know, they were just they walked by this building, and Brian slammed the gate shot. And that that was all it took. And somebody came, you know, running out and they engaged in a fight. And Brian and the boys after the fight, Brian and his two friends started to kind of walk away and the guy came, went back into his apartment, ran back out with a knife and, you know, one final blow and then that was it. So just, you know, random, but yet I but yet I come to not believe in random, which is a really tough conversation to have with people. But you know, I for my own sanity, I had to get to the point where I believed and I understood that that it wasn’t random that Brian you know that Brian soul recognized that this was an exit that he chose to take because that kid Let me tell you probably like your shame that that kid lived more in his 23 years than most of us do in a lifetime. He was always, always just off and running to the next thing and you know, the next accomplishment he wants so many awards, I would put you to sleep if I listed them all, you know, super smart, straight, a kid athletic all of that. And so, of course, we miss this physical presence immensely, of course, and I always well, but, but he’s with us. He’s with me all the time. And we now work together and helping other parents just like you and Shana do.

Brian Smith 5:29
Yeah. So um, yeah. You know, it’s interesting that it seems like a lot of times when our kids die early, that there they do live, lifelike, full out. And I talked to a lot of parents that have had children that have that have died early. And it’s almost always like, they’re like, they lived a certain way, you know, that they like it was almost like they knew they weren’t gonna be here for a long time. And they wanted to squeeze everything in.

Paige Lee 5:52
I agree. Yeah. Yeah, I agree. It does. It does seem to be that way. Yeah.

Brian Smith 5:57
Yeah. So I know you’ve you’ve made the transition now and into, you know, your your kind of healing and you’re in you’ve seen, you know, the bigger picture, but what was it like when you first found out that the Brian had been murdered?

Unknown Speaker 6:09
Oh, gosh.

Paige Lee 6:12
And I do the first two chapters in my book are about that, you know, that. So that phone call, right? It all started with that phone call at 5am. And when I first found out, I’ll never forget the name of the the Dean of Students at USC at the time, his name is Michael Jackson. And so that’s the name you don’t forget. And but his roommate had called me at 5am. And he had been, he’s like, I don’t know, Brian was in a fight. That’s all I know. Because he was not one of the boys with him. And would you call the hospital and find out what’s going on? I’m here, but they won’t tell me anything. So I called the hospital and because Brian was an adult, they would tell me nothing. Yeah. And so that was so frustrating. And, and then the next call came from Michael Jackson. And he said, you know, Oh, so you know, your child has died. And I just screamed, I mean, I just screamed and dropped the phone. And, you know, for the longest time, I mean, probably for a couple of years, I would wake up at 5am I would wake up when that phone call came in. It’s just I think it’s so traumatic on our psyche and our being physically and mentally and emotionally. That that it was just a trigger for me. And so I would, I would just wake up and just cry, you know, for the first certainly for the first six months anyway, if not longer. Yeah. So we we, somebody made reservations for us to get to LA I don’t know who and we met Brian’s dad and step mom at the earth air airport, and we all went to LA. And, you know, I don’t I don’t remember a lot. I talked about it a little bit in my book, but it’s just so it’s also vaigai. I do remember that aren’t my husband’s great, nice. We call her a niece and she she really believes she acted as if it was a cousin to Mike, my son and my nephew, and she was in the basement. And I always felt so sorry for her that she had to be there that day because she didn’t live with us. And so I just felt I’ve always felt so sorry for her that she had to witness that app just like a 15 year old you know that? Well, your daughter was what 13 1213 died. Your daughter Shana was 15 right?

Brian Smith 8:29
Yeah, my other daughter was 18

Paige Lee 8:30
eight. Oh, okay. 18 anyhow, so it just it just was it just was it was just like living in a dream. I

Unknown Speaker 8:41
guess this is really

Paige Lee 8:42
all I can describe it. We went to LA we went through all the motions, we we were greeted at the airport by these officials from USC, and some of Brian’s friends, thankfully, because they were the they were the humanity part of the equation. Right. And, you know, we were just kind of like, guided to USC into the president’s office. And it was miserable. It was awful. I was like the last thing I wanted to be doing. The day after know, the day the day of me hearing that my son had died. And so it was just horrible. And I remember waking up the next morning in the hotel and just staring in the bathroom mirror. And I just was like, trying to make sense of like, Who is this woman in the mirror? And why is she Why are tears just streaming down her face? And you know, you’re just like confused, right? Yeah,

Brian Smith 9:29
there’s just this this is so dissociation that comes about and there’s the this is unreal feeling like you’re walking through a dream or through a fog and it’s hard for anybody that hasn’t gone through it to understand so when you say that you don’t really remember a lot of it, I think I mean, I understand that. And, and that surreal feeling when you know that your life has changed forever. You know, just in that moment.

Paige Lee 9:54
You just can’t comprehend it for the longest time and and I just kept expecting him to walk in the room or Are you know it just like you that phone call, they’re gonna say, Oh, I’m sorry, it was a mistake. Thank goodness, it was a mistake. It wasn’t Brian who died, right? I mean, I wished that for months and months. And it’s just, it’s just such devastation. And that’s why helping parents heal is such a beautiful organization. Because Because we can, we can help shine light on other people’s journeys. And we can, we can share with them that, that that’s exactly how we reacted. That’s exactly you know, where our journey took us. And that’s how we felt. And that’s how we experience things. So that and that’s why I wrote the book, because I want people to know that they’re not crazy. They’re not alone. They’re not crazy. They’re not alone, that we’ve been there. And we do understand. And so while everybody’s journey is unique, you know, your journey in grief is going to be different than my journey. But yet, there’s so many similarities, we walk so much of a similar path, that, that that I think we can all resonate with each other stories. Yeah, while recognizing that each journey is unique.

Brian Smith 11:06
Yeah, exactly. And is, what’s one thing about being helping parents heal, which we’re both part of your caring listener, and we’ll talk about that a little bit also. But, you know, no matter how our children transition, for me, anyway, I see some people in the organization, so my child died by suicide, and my child died by cancer and my child died by murder, and those things are all different. But we still still share the same journey, there’s still something universal about what we go through, whether it was a long term thing or a sudden thing, you know, we so I can still relate to, you know, how, what your what you went through and, and getting that phone call for me, I found my daughter, but it’s the same thing. It’s just, you know, they’re here one minute, the next minute they’re not and you think it’s a normal day, and you find out this is the day that your life changed?

Paige Lee 11:53
forever. I mean, forever, the worst day of your life. I I went, I took Brian to West Point. I don’t know if you know much about military academies. But you know, I, we all were there. And we go through the line and we do the, you know, whatever, signups and then all of a sudden, they say, okay, mom’s you know, dad, say goodbye to your child. And I’m like, what, wait, what I mean, I’m like, No, I was not prepared for that. And said, I had always said, that was the worst day of my life. They didn’t even give me time. And then the next time I saw him, he had no hair. You know, he looked defeated, he just like, they broke him down, they, you know, and little did I know that the worst day of my life was yet to come that that day was really a day that that probably helped turn him into, you know, a man. But as a mother, I was grieving the loss of my little boy at that man, knowing that he would come back to me a man. And when, you know, with death, you know, it’s it’s different. And so, one of my biggest lessons in this journey that I’ve been on for 12 years now, which is like, That’s shocking, just like it was shocking at the beginning. And I was, I remember telling people I am, I am not going to survive a week I how am I going to go on? How am I going to survive a week or a month or a year or five years, like, I it’s absolutely unconscionable that I can live the rest of my life, like, you know, I was 49, I think at the time, and so, and now, here it is, 12 years later, right? It’s just but one of the things that I had to embrace that took such a long time, was understanding that not only that he still lives but that I if I choose to meet him where he is now and embrace him as the soul that he is now that that’s, that’s huge. That’s a big deal, because I I had to kind of let go of the need to have him here as Brian and the physical with his face and his dimple, and his, you know, his hair and his bushy eyebrows, I you know, I can remember him in that way. And he does still sometimes appear to me in that form, because that’s dear to my heart. And that’s how I remember him.

But but that’s not who he is now, right? Who He is now is this beautiful light being soul that connects with me on a much deeper level, honestly, than we ever connected when he was here in physical form as my son. So. So that was a huge part of my journey. And I think a huge part of what got us to the point where we can communicate the way that we do.

Brian Smith 14:31
Yeah, I want to go back to some of these because I think it’s really important for people in those early days and I listened to your interview earlier with Suzanne casement and you touched on this, this idea that, you know, that we can go on that because as a parent, my daughter was 15 when when she when she died when she transitioned, and my other daughter just gone to college. So I got through that morning, and I’m thinking okay, well we have Shana for three more years in the house, you know, cuz she’s, she was only going into 10th grade. So we will

got this time with her. So when when she was suddenly gone, I was like, I don’t want to be here. I mean, not not only did I think I couldn’t survive, I was like, I didn’t want to survive. And I had a mother, you know, asked me just a few days ago, she said, Could you talk on your on your program about suicide, about parents that are surviving? Because nobody wants to talk about that? And I heard you tell Suzanne, that was something that you had thought about. And so just something about that. Tell me about how you how, what you went through.

Paige Lee 15:31
In regards to the wanting to die? Yeah. Well, I did want to die. Or I thought he wanted to die. Yeah. Yeah. So I really thought he wanted to die because I couldn’t imagine my life without my son. And, you know, Brian being my only living birth child, since I had lost three babies prior to him. And I do have two beautiful stepchildren. I have a stepdaughter from a previous marriage many years ago. And and I love them all dearly. I do but but your own birth child is, you know, a little bit of a different connection. And so the thought of not having him in my life, I, I just kept saying, If I can’t be Brian’s mom, who am I? Like, I didn’t have any other identity, even though I had jobs that I had careers. I just all of my identity was wrapped into him, how could I help him? When was I gonna see him again? Do I need to bring you home? are we coming to you, you know, what do you need? And so I just couldn’t imagine what I would do with not that and so I just kept thinking in the back of my mind, just just end it. You know, my Dwayne my husband, he’ll be fine. He’s got his kids. Okay, you know, we had a granddaughter at the time. And now we have five, now we have five, but we had one then. And I, you know, he’ll be fine. And he’s got his business. And it just kept nagging at me. And Brian had a little red Ford Ranger truck that we had given him for his birthday one year. And he and I had driven that truck all the way to LA, when he went to enroll at USC, and it was quite the trip. The thing didn’t run all that good. So we had to like rev it up and take a big running, you know, head start to get up the hill, that daughter passed, I think it was, and so just a lot of memories in that truck with him. And, and I didn’t know what to do with the truck. His dad didn’t want it. And so I decided to give it to my nephew to Brian’s cousin Kevin. And so I made arrangements about probably, let’s see, that’s probably like seven, eight months after Brian died. So the following spring, Brian died in September. And I told Kevin, I’m gonna let you have the truck. But I’m going to take one more joy ride in the truck. And so I got in, and you know, it was a, what do you call it a four speed not a not an automatic a step by step manual, thank you, and a stick shift. And I drove to a community outside of ours where there’s a big reservoir that we always use to take the boys fishing, and so many memories of not not so much fishing, but wakeboarding and fishing and them dropping, jumping off the Highbridge into the water and just endless pictures and memories of those times. And so I drove there. And it’s kind of a windy road, you know, to get there and there’s a lot of there’s a there’s a drop right from the edge of the road. There’s no guardrail or anything like that. It’s just this drop down into the reservoir. And I had I had that car going a spell truck as fast as it would go. I had led zepplin blaring on the radio, it was our favorite band. And I was just lost. I was absolutely lost in my memories. And I just said, Okay, this is it. You know, I’ve been talking about I want to die, and I’m just I’m going to do it. And I I’ll be honest, and say I think there was some part of my brain that was like, you’re not really going to do it. But I understood that I had to put this to rest I understood that I had to I had to be done with this conversation because it was serving me no good whatsoever, right. And so I just wrapped that truck up as far as it would go. I you know, Led Zeppelin blaring on the radio, and I just arrived and I swerved to the edge where the water is. And then at the last possible second, I slammed on the brakes. And I stopped and I did not go in. And I just heard in my head No, this is not the way this is not to be your path. And and I understood that I needed I just needed to test myself I think is really what that was it was a test for myself that my higher self or my subconscious self needed to do so that I could just be done with that conversation of suicide. So for me, it wasn’t my path. Right? And just like in the earlier days, you know, I drink wine. I drink a bottle of wine every night. And you know, that wasn’t to be my path either. I had to stop doing that because I just had work to do. I think I think Just always known that, you know how we just take our pain and we turn it into fuel to do really great work. And I think that’s why so many parents of children who have died, do enter into this work to help others, whether we do it for free, or whether we do it for compensation, you know, which is which is fair.

It’s, I think we’re just driven to do that, because the pain is so great, we have no other choice, we’re either going to, we’re either going to drown in our pain, right? Or we’re going to use it as fuel to help other people. I think it’s one or the other. So for me, suicide wasn’t the answer. I do believe suicide as a as an option for people to exit. And I know a lot of moms whose children have left by suicide. And and I think, I think I think I think at the end of the day, we have to honor the choice the soul makes.

Brian Smith 20:54
Yeah, I agree with you. And I really, really appreciate you sharing that and being so vulnerable, because so many people aren’t. And for me, I didn’t I never planned it. But I thought about it. And it’s funny, you talk about driving, because I’m one day I was driving back from I was in Kentucky, and I live in Ohio. And it was a beautiful, sunny day. And I started thinking about Shayna. And I was like, you know, I could just run into a bridge abutment. And no, it’ll be over. And I would be with her. And I think a lot of people when they have these thoughts have never had before in their lives that they are, something’s wrong with me. I’m going crazy. But I heard you say this. And I agree. As a parent, I don’t know who doesn’t think about that. I mean, I guess there’s some people that don’t, but you want to be with your child. That’s just a natural instinct, I think probably particularly for mothers. But for fathers also, we want to we want to be with our kids, we want to protect them. We want to know, they’re, they’re happy and they’re safe. So that that thought comes I want to say to people that have had that thought, if you’re planning suicide, then I encourage people to get help and know, right, and I and I don’t want to ever feel like, you know, it’s very difficult to talk about this stuff with, you know, honoring people’s path.

Paige Lee 22:00
I know, I know.

Brian Smith 22:03
But at the same time, you know, giving telling people it’s okay to have those thoughts. That doesn’t mean that you’re crazy, doesn’t mean there’s something wrong with you. But like, like you I ultimately said, Okay, well, I’ve got I’ve got work to do here. And I know how how my daughter is and how she would greet me if I did do something like that. And I have other people I’m responsible to, you know, I’ve got I’ve got a daughter that I love very much. And I have a wife that I need to be here for. And you know, I have work to do. So you know what we choose to stay, but for people that are going through that, that back and forth that, you know, it’s understandable.

Paige Lee 22:39
It is understandable. And and absolutely, they should seek help from a professional and I know as as caring listeners, which we’re going to talk about, we never, we never really venture into that territory with any of our with any of our parents who call us because we have not trained professionals. So I I do want to say that I that is that is my opinion. But I thought I sought mental health professionals to before and after. Well, not before that time, but after that time, not because I was feeling suicidal, but for other reasons. So I do believe in that. And I think that everybody should seek whatever alternatives they can to actually, you know, doing that. Yeah, I think everybody’s needed here. I think the reason we’re still here is that we have a purpose, and that, you know, somebody needs us. So there’s work we haven’t completed. So I think I think if we are still here, we probably have something we need to finish.

Brian Smith 23:34
Yeah, I agree with that. And the other thing I want to say to people is, you know, whether you think suicide is right or wrong or a path or not one thing we know is the people that you leave behind, it causes tremendous pain. And so I think that’s something that we need to really think about, you know, because we know how it felt when our kids transitioned or left. And for us to do that to other people by our own choice, which I think we have to really think about the ripples that we were going to leave a lot of times people don’t realize how needed they are, you know how we all are?

Paige Lee 24:06
Well, I think it adds that component of guilt. That summit, you know, that that maybe that’s it’s a big burden to bear, I can only imagine that it would be a huge burden to have to bear because there would have to be some guilt. I know. But the people I know who are living with that have that I’ve had some people reach out to me. I have a friend in New Zealand who wrote a beautiful letter to another mom about suicide because her son did suicide. And anyhow and her beliefs and how she came around to it. So she’s given me her blessing to share that with people if you know if it ever comes up but yeah, so yeah.

Brian Smith 24:45
Yeah. Well, I again, I appreciate you you going there with me because I someone just requested this like last week and I was like and she said, Can you have a mother on or to talk about this? I’m like, I heard your interview with Suzanne. I heard you bring that up. And I’m like, you know, I thought you’d be comfortable. With talking about that, because I think it’s really important for us not to feel alone, we’re on this journey. And for people, like, you know, you’re 12 years, I’m at five years, and I remember what it was like when I was at a few months. And I saw someone at five years, 12 years, just like you, I was like, yeah, that’s not gonna be me. Yeah, I’m not going to be here. And, you know, Suzanne giesemann talks about joy. And, you know, we talked about being shining like parents, and I’m like, yeah, there’s not gonna ever be any joy again. So that’s the feeling that you have in those first few days. I just talked to a mother a couple nights ago, and she was just in tears because it’s only been a couple of months. And I was like, it will get better you know, if we work at it. So tell me how you how you made this transition this this, you know, you go from being shattered and and so what happened then?

Paige Lee 25:48
Well, um, you know, I don’t talk about in my book about the trial, but there was a trial. So they did, they did catch the man who, who killed Brian and he said prison will be facing his was at Suzanne’s interview that we talked about that, but he’ll be facing parole here probably in the next five years. I think so that’ll be kind of interesting. We’ll see how spiritually evolved. I am at that time. Because that’s gonna be interesting, right? But, but we don’t have to. We don’t have to face that yet. Three weeks after Brian died. I was laying on my bed. And I heard out loud with my ears, mom. I heard him cry out to me. It was out loud with my ears. And I just Brian, I, Brian, my son’s Brian, you’re right. I jumped up. And I’m just like, Brian, Brian, where are you? Like I heard you, I heard you. And of course, I couldn’t see him or find him. So I raced to my bookshelf. And I’m like, nothing, nothing, nothing, no books on the afterlife. And so I went to the bookstore, and I bought every book I could find on the afterlife. And the first book I read was George Anderson’s lessons from the light, I think it is less than right. And, and then three weeks after that, approximately, I went to the grocery store, which was my first kind of venture out because I’ve been having horrible panic attacks. Like every time I would leave my house, I’d have a panic attack, because my home and I know many grieving parents will relate to this as well, my home was my safe haven, and I did not want to leave it. I want it to stay there with at the time, my wine, and my pictures and my memories, and my, you know, my music from the funeral, you know that I would just Blair didn’t want to leave the house. And I did on this day. And my husband, we went to the grocery store, and there’s a woman there with her husband in the produce department. And I know them and their son and our daughter dated and my son knew their son. And I’m just like, instant, like, avoid you know, that feeling of, oh my Don’t look at me like, you know, I don’t want to see the pity in your eyes. I do not want to see the pity in your eyes. And I know what you’re thinking. I know what everybody in this store is thinking you’re thinking. I’m so glad it was her. Not me. Right. That’s what I thought I thought they were all thinking. I’m so glad I’m so sorry for your pain. But I’m so glad it wasn’t me. Because we never think it will happen to us. Right? We never think it will happen to us. It just happens to other people that we don’t know. Yeah. And anyhow, so I’m avoiding her. And I hear this voice that you know, the voice This is when the voice started really piping up. And the voice said, Go talk to her. No, no, no, no, I’m not gonna go you know, I walk over to the grapes, you know, the other end of the produce department. And, you know, go talk to her. So after about the third nudge, I said, Fine. I’m like talking out loud at this point. Fine. And I go over there. And I’m like, Hi, Carol. How are you? And she goes, Paige.

Oh, my gosh, it’s so good to see you house, Brian.

Unknown Speaker 28:47
Oh, wow.

Paige Lee 28:48
And I just, I just melted. I mean, I literally just collapsed. And she’s like, oh my gosh. And so I told her and I don’t know how they didn’t know they live in my small community outside of Boise. But some people just don’t watch the news or, you know. And anyhow, so she says, Remember, this is three weeks after I heard Brian’s voice. So I’ve become a seeker at that point. I’m seeking Him, where are you? How can I find you? She says, she says, What can I do to help? And I said, Well, you don’t happen to know of a psychic, do you? And she said, as a matter of fact, I’m really working on my spiritual development. And I’m having a psychic message circle at my home in like two weeks or whatever it was, and I have two seats left, would you like to come for Wow. And I said, Yes, yes, I would like to come. And so everything Everything is everything is available to us, right? So we just have to be willing, I had to be willing to step out of my home and out of my comfort zone. I had to be willing to listen to that voice that had to nudge me three times before I went over there and did what they asked me to do they being spirit and and in order to be able to receive this invitation To talk to my first psychic ever in my whole life, and that turned out to be an incredible, amazing experience. And I saw that man every month for a year. He’s a very gifted, legitimate medium that lives outside of my community. He runs a church. He’s just a beautiful, beautiful person. And, and I signed up that January. So it’s like only four months after Brian died. And I signed up for psychic development classes, and Angel and guide workshop. And I was a sponge, Brian, anything and everything that I could learn. I was reading books like crazy, because I was on a mission to find my son.

Brian Smith 30:41
Mm hmm. Yeah. Yeah. And I love the way you put that, you know, it’s funny, cuz you said that reminded me I have a friend who’s a medium and the way we met was my daughter dropped in on her. And I walk every day. And so she was this friend was seeing my posts on Facebook and how many steps I take it every day. And she’s like, this guy is really like walking like crazy. I walk seven miles every morning. Oh, and she said, Shayna was telling her to reach out to me. So she reached out to me, she said Shayna is saying that you’re trying to hit you’re trying to catch up with her. And so you know, when you said that we’re seeking our children. I know someone else wrote a book about his son passing away. And this whole thing was I’m seeking my son. So it’s like we, you know, I don’t know what your what your religious background is. But a lot of us are, you know, raised Christian, we think, well, they’re in heaven. And that’s good enough when it’s an older person or something, but I’m when it’s our kid, it’s like, we want to know more. And I know where are they Really?

Paige Lee 31:32
Yes, really, because heaven was, I have a chapter in my book about finding spirituality, because I also was raised Christian Presbyterian, but mostly at Easter. Yeah, so we get dressed up for Easter and all that, but, but I really didn’t have an understanding of I believed in a god, I believed in God, I use the term God. I believed in definitely a higher power something greater than ourselves. I have a Bible, I’ve read parts of the Bible, you know, but I, I’ve tried Bible study, I’ve tried every church you can imagine. With my son, actually, we went on a journey one year to find our church and we never found it. And, and then after Brian died, I found found my church and my church is here. Yeah. And my church is here, and my god is here. And I believe, I believe in Christianity, I believe in God and Jesus, and I believe in the Bible and the Bible. They even used the Bible as a tool for me once in getting assigned to me from Brian on my first Mother’s Day Without him, so I don’t want to give away every story in my book, but that’s a really good one. Yeah. And so, but I, we almost died, Brian and I almost died once before. And God, either God plucked his hand into that water and picked us out and placed us on the rocks, or his angels did, because he went from almost almost being drowned, to sitting up on top of high rocks. Oh, I had what I say in the book is I had felt God work in my life before. That’s just the most extreme example of of one way which I had. But, but I had never really understood how God worked in my life directly until Brian died. And now everything I do is, you know, of God and to God and trying to live, you know, trying to live in God’s image, but trying to live in my son’s image, not not in his image, but to make him proud of me right, to do the work that I know that I’m left here to do, that we do together. So I believe I believe it was pre planned. I don’t know if you know, you do all that kind of stuff. And Sara ruble talks a lot about pre birth planning. Dr. Journey of souls is one of my favorite books, absolute favorite books, Dr. Michael Newton, about pre birth planning, and what happens when we’re in between lives. There’s just so much right. There’s so much information in 12 years, which is why I wrote the book to try to get as much of it out as I could so people could know. Because it’s like, you know, Tom zoob. I don’t know if you know, Tom, he likes to say, I wrote he wrote his book, because it’s the book he wished he could have read when his wife and two children died, right? This is the book that I wish I could have. My book is the book I wish I could have read so that I knew that I wasn’t going crazy. And so that I could have skipped over I could have skipped over some pain to get to Well, how do I do that? And how do I do this? And where should I go and where should I start? Yeah,

Brian Smith 34:33
absolutely. And I you know, what you said about, you know, the Bible and the way that we were raised and you know, and religion, let’s just call it religion. Yeah, no, it works for people until it doesn’t. And I find so many people and I would like I can’t reveal any confidence but I was just talking to him other than talk to others all the time. So there’s no one will know she is. I was talking to him about the other day. He was like, I don’t know who I am anymore. You know, I don’t I don’t know who God is anymore. Because we have this this Sunday school image of God that if we do the right things, then nothing bad will happen. And when we have something like this, then it’s like, suddenly we’ve got to start finding out for ourselves. And we’ve got it’s got to be more than just that superficial, you know, kind of kind of religion thing that we get. And you talked about, you know, your churches here. I tell people my religion now as I’ve heard people say, my religions love I call it Brian ism, because it’s like, it’s I study Hinduism. I study Buddhism, I study, you know, the Dow, I study, you know, I’ve read a little bit of the crime. I know the Bible, you know, really well, because my, my grandfather was a preacher. So I grew up in the church. So I, but I take all that stuff. And I also look at science, you know. And so I, when you said, I know, it’s like, I tell people, they’re like, what do you believe? I’m like, No, I know. At this point, I that’s what I know. And is, and I know it because there’s so much out there. And I love that your book because you give resources even in your book, right? I did, where people can go to find this stuff. Yeah,

Paige Lee 36:01
yeah. Yeah. It’s just everything that was gifted to me, I feel so lucky. I feel so fortunate because I need to hear Brian out loud with my ears just three weeks after he died. So it’s like, I’m just a mom, there is nothing special about me. I am not psychic. I’ve not been seeing dead people since I was a little girl. But for me, it was that that was probably they probably knew that’s what it was going to take to get through to me was something that extreme. Because I was completely I knew nothing about any of this. And sometimes I laugh at how persistent Brian has been. I mean, because he’s really had to just kind of do this with me a lot. So that’s what I want to avoid other people don’t, you don’t have to go through that. You know, let’s we’ll get you started in the right direction. So I do a live zoom thing now and doing it through the end of December, pockets free on Monday nights, and we do a connection meditation. So that’s free to everybody. I think Elizabeth has been posting it on the helping parents heal Facebook page, but just because it shouldn’t be a secret, right? I mean, that’s why you’re doing what you do. That’s why we all do what we do. It’s none of this should be a secret in the days of believing that I have to go to a medium to get the answers to communicate with my child. Yes, it’s comforting. Yes, it’s healing. Yes, I utilize that source. But is it isn’t necessary? No, because you can communicate with Shana I can communicate with Brian, everybody can communicate with their child, some of us might get there a little quicker than others. You know, what took me 12 years, you know, say I mean, not that I waited 12 years. But you know what I mean, might take somebody else one year or five years, because all of our journeys are different. And we all have different belief systems, you know, sometimes they get in the way.

Unknown Speaker 37:49
And we have to we

Paige Lee 37:49
have to learn like the religion, we have to sometimes learn how to how to how to walk around that and how to kind of ease ourselves into a new understanding and a new reality that will allow us to find our, our loved ones.

Brian Smith 38:04
Yeah, let’s talk about how you communicate with Brian, you said you got that time when you spoke to you audibly three weeks after after his passing. How is the communication? What’s it like now?

Paige Lee 38:14
Well, now, I’m now now that I guess the most physical thing that he does is he sends me these hugs, where he? So I used to call it I can’t say out loud, I used to call it but it used to be whenever I spoke a spiritual truth out loud, this spiritual tingle, like would come through my body. And I know many, many people probably in your audience can relate to that to where after I had studied the spirituality enough and got to the point I do, I’m Reiki and pranic healing certified. So I’ve learned about energy. And so I got to the point somewhere along my journey, where whenever I would speak like kind of a profound spiritual truth, I guess, I would get this like tingle and I would be like, Oh, that’s my you know, that’s my nod from God from my my spirit team that I just spoke something that’s truth. Well, Brian does that times 1000. He says, His energy through me, in me through me all the way through my arms and my hands and my legs and my feet, and I’m just almost vibrating. And I call it my Brian hug. And seriously, it’s intense. I said, if I’m holding something, I oftentimes just have to drop it because I’m just like, I have to just, I have to let it move through me it is that intense. And so I it’s hard to explain. But it’s the most beautiful amazing thing and and we’ve I’ve worked hard to get to this point where I can receive that from him. Because like I said, I’m not a natural at this. I’ve had to learn it. I had to go through years of doubt. And you know, the reason my book is called choose to believe is because even though I was communicating with him through mediums, and he was sending me some galore. I mean, we had so many signs, and all of these great things. And still I would, I’d be like, Ah, really? Like Did that really happen? Or, you know, did you really just, you know, was that really from him? And finally Spirit said, Listen, just choose to believe, just to please just choose to believe, because if you would just believe, then eventually you will, right. Just choose to believe and eventually you will. Yeah. And I just said, okay, because I couldn’t find it anymore. And I never gave up wanting it right. And so I did, and everything kind of broke wide open. And so from that point forward, I started hearing him more clearly in my head. When I if I’m in meditation on behalf of Brian or another child, he’ll kind of right through me. You, you heard the example I gave of Suzanne Wilson’s reading that I was so blessed to receive in Arizona, probably at the very end of Suzanne Eastman’s interview, I mentioned that, where Brian had spoken a phrase to me, and Suzanne repeated it on the stage. And it’s, it’s it had been years, first of all, and never had spoken those words to anybody. So it’s such a validation. And that’s why we go to mediums for the validation. But I can I can, I can now get those hugs from Brian and he can talk to me and I know it’s him. I know, it’s him. I no longer question. Is that really him? Am I just making it up. But I think we have to go through that. And that’s what we talked about in the in the class that I’m doing is, you know, it’s a process of first opening ourselves up to the energy opening, learning how to get out of our mind and into our heart space. And I use mantra, I use mantra to help me instantly kind of get into the calmness. And then and then it’s stillness for me. I’ve had some amazing guided meditations, amazing of which Dr. Marks, you know, pet sticks is one of them the most incredible thing I’ve ever I actually believe I left my body during that meditation and went to visit Brian and my loved ones in heaven. But, but for me, the silence is where the answers are. The silence is always where the answers are, right? It’s the quiet still place within us. That’s where the answers are. And that’s where we find our children, or our spouse or a parent or our friend. Yes. Or our sibling.

Brian Smith 42:25
Yeah, we you said, to choose to believe I think that was really interesting way of putting it, because it really is a choice. You know, it really is. And I see people, you know, I’ve had people say, Well, you know, my son or daughter passed two years ago, my mother, and I haven’t gotten any signs at all. And I’m like, Oh, really? Yeah, except for the dream I have. My mother came to me and told me that everything was going to be okay. And she was young and healthy. Or I was talking to a young lady, and she told me, her mother had passed. And she said, I was really distraught. One day, I was walking down the street, and I was crying. And this woman stopped me. And so the UK, they ended up having a long conversation. Turns out the woman that spoke with her mother passed when she was really young. And she spoke words of this to this young woman that changed her life. And she’s she’s talking to me, she said, Well, you know, I think that might have been a sign I said, that certainly, you know, was a sign so we, we can choose to when these things come along, and I’m an engineer, so I analyze them too. Because like Shane has done thing with things on my phone, like one day, my podcast, on my phone, she changed all the covers of all my podcast to a picture that I had of her when she was two years old building with these blocks. And I’m freaking out. I’m like, What happened to my podcast? How did that happen? And it is everywhere. So then I went and checked, you know, other places, and everywhere else, the podcasts covers were the same as they always were. But only on my phone where they changed and then they change back.

Paige Lee 43:52
I know Don’t you love that stuff?

Brian Smith 43:55
So I’m like, what, enough? So I’m like, Okay, how did this is? This is the engineering me How did this happen? Was it just a fluke could have just but I to this day cannot figure out how that could possibly have happened. So I’ve had to say, Okay, well, that was that was a sign

Paige Lee 44:10
that was shailer right? Because there is no explanation for Yeah, you know, there is no I mean, I we have all of that, you know how they love to use technology in the early days that really I think is truth. It’s easier for them to manipulate electronics than it is to enter through and give us a hug right that’s a little harder to enter through all of our energy bodies and you know, get where we can feel them in that way. We have to really do the work to be open I think to receive that. Yeah. But oh my gosh, iPods coming on and off by themselves TVs coming on and off freezing my phone, but just splashes picture, you know, just out of the blue. Just stuff that I mean that and that I think that’s what gets us through. That’s what gets us through those particularly the first year or so. Don’t get Yeah,

Brian Smith 44:54
I love I love what you said because as you said I was thinking you know, you said you’ve talked about getting the hugs from Brian. outtakes while to get there and reminds me, my friend, Jake, semi Edney, who’s a medium you might you might know, Jay? Well, the name so Jake was he describes it as when we’re in the heavy grief. It’s like, like it’s like Crisco when it’s solid, and there’s a feather sitting on top of spirits like the feather. And you need to melt the Crisco for the feather to be able to get through. I love that. And there’s those early days of that heavy grief. And it’s so unfair, because, you know, we tell parents, we have to raise your vibration, and they’re like, I can’t raise my vibration, because I’m in grief. And so I guess the thing is, you know, to be patient and to look for those other things. And I’m like, well, you said that, because it seems like they can get to us through technology, do light bulbs flashing on and off our cases, our ceiling fan in our bedroom, Shannon would turn that on or off. And if she doesn’t do it much anymore, it’s very rare that she does it now. But I think she comes to us in other ways.

Paige Lee 45:50
Right? And, and as I think as they progress in the ways that they communicate with us, they become more meaningful, and more just on on a deeper level, right? Because I mean, the the way I received Brian now is so much deeper than the ladybug that he sent me on my 50th birthday. All of that was, that was huge. You know, I mean, I’ve big thing that we have a big thing with lady bugs. That’s our thing. But that’s why I’m like, Can I hold up my book? Yeah, absolutely. Is that okay? So it’s choose to believe and there’s this. You see the stick and there’s a little Ladybug up there and the light on the sticks. See it but that’s the red the lady but such a huge part of our path is the the ladybug that he sends me. And he sends me ladybugs because I asked him just kind of inadvertently, randomly one day to send me a ladybug. And that night, the First Lady Bug came and they have never stopped coming. And I never had a thing for ladybugs before. So not only not only do they send us those types of signs early in our grief. Not only do they send us signs like that early in our grief, but they’ll also give you what you asked for. I had a lady who she read that chapter in my book, and she she stopped and she put the book down and she was sitting at a river. And she put the book down and she asked her child for a sign at that moment after she read that chapter. And and then she got the sign that she asked for. So they’re listening, they’re listening, they want to give us they want to give us but I love Jake’s analogy. And I always I just always say it’s just a gray shroud. It’s a it’s a it’s it’s a it’s it’s just like a big black gray cloud that we walk around with. And of course, they can’t penetrate that and, and I they want us to just they want us to, to come into the light and not have that shroud around us. But but we have to we have to go through our mourning process. I mean, yeah, there’s, there’s, we have to go through that. You know,

Brian Smith 48:00
I think we I agree. And I think it’s really important to say that we have to be patient with ourselves in that because, you know, people say I want to get there right now. And I’m like, tell people, there’s no timeline on grief. But there are some general guidelines. And the first year is generally shock. You know, it’s just first years Usually, I don’t believe this, you know, you just kind of stumbling through is like a fog. And then I’ve also found because, you know, we’re going through the holidays, right now we’re recording this at the beginning of December. And one of the worst years ever, so we’re going through a lot of stuff right now. But those first holidays are rough, but sometimes the second holidays are even worse that that second year, when it really sinks in. So it is a it is a process and I try to tell people in the early part of it is just hold on, you know, just just hold on and get through the days and it will get better, you know, starting you know, at a certain point in time.

Paige Lee 48:56
And and to be gentle, be gentle with yourself and allow a lot whatever comes up allow it I mean, I sat on my floor and screaming and kicking and pounding and tried to negotiate with God and and you know, it wasn’t gonna work. But I you know, I did that. And I mean, we have to, we have to allow whatever comes up in us that day, and if it’s to lay in bed and pull the covers over our head for a week or a month, and that’s what we have to do. I mean, I mean, I’m not a proponent of you know, I’m a proponent of doing whatever it is somebody needs to do that day. But we have to find opportunities to be kind to ourselves. And so bodywork is critical. If people can afford massage or do yoga, do something at home to where you’re stretching and moving your muscles because grief will absolutely locked down in our muscles. It’ll store there and locked down until we start to release it. So even though Yes, that first year is all about that and the first year is all about tears, tears, tears, tears, tears. I was like I could not possibly Have any more tears in my body? And then I would cry another bucket full, you know, and and it was just that way I would watch films of him to make myself cry. Yeah. I mean, because I just I just I had to I was.

Brian Smith 50:15
There’s something about that, you know, it’s interesting because when Shana this summer after she passed, I discovered an album by a group called Evanescence and the lead singer of the album, she had a sister transition when she was young. And so I’m listening to the album and the almost the whole album is about, it’s about death, and seeing the person again and going through your life that is a song called the end of the dream, because, you know, running toward it in the dream to see you again. And I’m like, What is it about listening to this music that makes me feel better, because it makes me cry every time. But there’s something about you need to kind of flush that out of yourself. And even even to this day, you know, I’ll put on a song that reminds me of Shane, and I know that I’m gonna cry when I do it. But there’s something that’s that’s cathartic about it, I guess.

Paige Lee 51:00
Well, it’s it’s healing, you know, it’s healing, and you probably on some level, feel better afterward. Because you’ve needed those tears, you need it to release. It’s all about, it’s all about releasing our pain and pain. Let me tell you, I’ve had a lot of pain in my life, and not as great as you know, Brian’s death, but a lot of pain and pain, pain, what you know, layer after layer after layer after layer of pain. And we have to whittle away at it a little bit at a time. So the more we can do things like moving our physical body, prayer, and meditation, gratitude, these are the things that I laid out in my book. You probably talk about this in your book, too. But just things that you can do to ease the pain just a little bit or to help yourself get through the pain, I guess, is a better way to say it, because it’s, I call them grief surges. Yeah, the first couple of years, it’s like, you know, you’re just driving down the street. And you see that little boy at the bus stop. You know, we’re in the exact same outfit Brian head on when he was in the first grade. And just, I had to pull over to the side of the road, it was such a trigger. And this was a couple, three, four or five years in, right. So I call them grief surges and what we can do about them to help us deal with them walking physical activity, I also love to walk and hike. That’s been a huge way, I guess, for me to relieve my pain, and to get out of myself. Because it’s like, it’s so weird, right? On one hand, we’re saying, Oh, you need to honor yourself. And, you know, cry, cry, cry. And on the other hand, we’re like, well, but we want to, we want to go do these other things to help the pain move out of your body. Because that’s really the goal, we want to feel like we have to feel it. But then we then we want to release it. If you don’t release it, we stay it stay stuck in us. And then it’s hard to become bigger than our story. And this really this journey, the healing journey is about becoming bigger than our story. In the beginning. It’s all about our story. How did how did Brian die? Let me tell you how Brian died. And I tell that story, you know, again, and again and again. And then you know, people don’t really want to hear it anymore. But I keep telling it until one day I didn’t I didn’t need to tell it anymore. And you know, I think telling it in the book was, was you know, maybe the last time I need to tell it right? It’s like, we get to the point where our journey is just bigger than that. And I think that we find a place where we find a place where we can, we can appreciate the journey that we’re on. And we can find gratitude in the journey that we’re on. So and I know for people that are newly grieving, that’s impossible to even comprehend. Yes. But but it’s so true. Right? Would you agree with that?

Brian Smith 53:43
Absolutely. 100%. And, and, and also, again, remembering what it sounded like when people talked about gratitude. I’m like, You gotta be kidding me. You know, gratitude practice, but I do it. I it’s a practice for me every day, before I get into bed, I think of three things I’m grateful for. And it can be small things, the beds warm, it’s winter now. So the fact that the bed is warm, the fact that I can get up and I can go for a walk, you know, with COVID I was I was waking up and like, I’m grateful that I can take a deep breath. So it doesn’t have to be you know, big things. And it really, and it sounds silly, but it really will change your perspective on things if you if you make that a practice.

Paige Lee 54:20
Yeah. And I like to ask people to add to their gratitude list add, what’s one thing that you’re grateful for to your beloved now after their death, and like start getting into that space of Okay, I have a new life with my beloved I have a new relationship because that’s what i was like i, George Anderson said, you can still have a relationship with your loved one and I’m like, I can, yeah, relationship with him. Like what’s that gonna look like? And so you know that and so the whole journey right commenced but start thinking about ways that you can be grateful to them. I am so grateful to Brian for the hugs. I’m so grateful for that Ladybug. I’m so grateful. And I would get a sign. And I’m telling you, if I would get a sign and I’d be, I’d be good for two weeks, like walking CLOUD NINE for two weeks. And then I want more. And then there were times where I felt so needy. And I’m like, I know, I’m so needy, but I need more. And sometimes I asked for signs and I don’t get them, right. That’s when I go back to my journal, you want to write all your science down, because when you don’t get one, you can go back and remember, the amazing miracles. I always called it my miracle journal. And because each and every sign from our beloved is a miracle, it’s a miracle. Isn’t that? Isn’t that amazing that they can communicate with us in that way?

Brian Smith 55:41
Yeah, it’s really, right. It’s really cool. And you know, the thing about the ongoing relationship because it sounds again, when people are remember what it’s like, was early in the journey was like, what does that mean? Because she’s not here anymore. I can’t I can’t watch TV with their we can’t get pizza together. But I do talk to her every day. And I realized this was not too long ago. It’s like, I talked to her more than I talked to my daughter that’s still in the physical because my daughter in the physical doesn’t live with us. So I only see her every few weeks. So but Shane I literally talked to every day. So it’s the first thing I’d say when I get up in the morning is I tell a good morning because of a big picture of outside my bedroom window. So when I walk out of the room, you know, I say good morning to her. But when I go to when I at night, I’m taking my dog out for the last time I say goodnight to her. So I talk more now than I would you know she’d be 21 now so she wouldn’t she wouldn’t be living here. She’d be way college.

Paige Lee 56:33
Right? Exactly. Yeah, say Brian would be 35 or something crazy. Gosh, like that blows my mind. Are my daughter’s my stepdaughter, my daughter, she is just six months older than Brian. So I’m always like, Oh, that’s how I think of everybody now is in terms of, well, how old were Brian B. So you must be this. Everything’s in terms of, you know, a B after Brian. Yeah, before Brian and after Brian. That’s how I think of my life now. A B or BP? Yeah, there’s these crazy birds right now. I gotta tell you this crazy birds. Like I almost feel like they’re gonna hit the house. While we’re flying all around this outside. It’s very, I’m like, ooh, I don’t like that movie. The birds so big black birds. Let’s hope that’s not assign

Brian Smith 57:17
any signs we don’t want them to. That’s right.

Unknown Speaker 57:20
Yeah. Yeah, who knows?

Brian Smith 57:21
Yeah, Shana likes to mess with my computer. I mean, one time, my computer’s just acting really weird. And I called the repair shop and said you’re probably gonna need a new computer. my hard drive was I was trying to repair it. It took me like several days. And finally it just started working again. And I was I was designers could buy a new computer. And like a week later, I had a reading with the medium. She said Shana said she likes to mess with your computer. And I said, Shana needs to stop breaking things. Because we had an outlet in the kitchen that stopped working. It was a GFCI outlet. And it just kept tripping. It wouldn’t stay. It wouldn’t stay stay in the right position. So I was just getting ready to leave to go buy another one and con electrician have replaced us at one more. I’m gonna try it one more time. And I hit the reset button. And it’s stuck. It stayed where we’re supposed to be. I love it. Yeah. So I’m like, you know, so they sometimes do things that will like, you know, they think it’s a little mischievous.

Paige Lee 58:12
I love how you talk to her that way to just so casual like she was like Shana, you need to quit breaking things. I mean, that’s so right. Like she’s just like still here right next to you that you’re in a casual. That’s how I talked to Brian too. And and you know, I said in the book and it’s, it’s in some it’s hard to put into words but in some ways I’m even closer to Brian now than I was when he was

Unknown Speaker 58:33

Paige Lee 58:34
Yeah. In body because man he likes to he pushed my triggers man all the time. He did he he just liked to do that. You know, we were so much alike. He is so much like me. And and I know that it doesn’t offend him for me to say that out loud to people. You know. We’re so close. Now. We were so close then. But it’s it really is kind of a deeper level now because it’s a soul to soul communication. Yeah. And and it’s just I wouldn’t. I mean, do I want him back in the physical? Yes, that would be amazing. Yeah. And I would be sad to give up what we have now at the same time, if that makes any sense.

Brian Smith 59:13
It does. You know, Shana was a very strong willed child. I remember when she was, well, we knew it from the literally day she was born. The nurses at the hospital that night she was born said this, you’re gonna have your hands full with this when she was two. I said, I hope she uses her powers for good and not for evil because she was just anything she wanted to accomplish the work. So she was 15 and a half when she passed. I think we probably avoid it. You know, we did avoid the 1617 1821 you know, all the fights we would have had. And but I feel like now Shana is a partner. So that’s something I wouldn’t have felt if she had been here because she is a part of my She’s the reason why I do what I do. And she’s a part of what I do what I do. So now she’s my partner.

Paige Lee 59:55
Exactly. That’s exactly right. Yep, that’s exactly right. I I always SAS Brian, go go gather up those kids now. Yeah, gather up those kids bring them on in. And I know that he is I know that he does do that.

Brian Smith 1:00:08
Yeah, yeah, absolutely. I think so there, it’s it’s weird no to say that to people and they’re like, you know, because it’s both. It’s just one of those things that we have to we can all both at the same time. I miss her tremendously, you know, I would love to have her back, it would give anything to have her back. But there is some there is some blessing and and this, and the fact that, which is the most important thing that I will see her again. So I always have that that hope in front of me. Yes,

Paige Lee 1:00:38
yes. And we’re not afraid to die, right. Like, I used to be so afraid of dying. And now I know. I mean, show me a parent Whose child is in spirit that doesn’t say, I’m not afraid to die now.

Brian Smith 1:00:50
Because that one yeah.

Paige Lee 1:00:51
Yeah. Because we know, we know that they’re going to be there. I’ve actually seen it firsthand. And um, you know, my grandma came to me three weeks before Brian died in a dream. And she told me, I didn’t remember what she told me. All I knew is she said, it’s okay. You will be with us soon. So I thought I was gonna die. And then of course, it turned out to be Brian who died. So I think my grandma came to, to prepare my soul for the time, you know that the time is near? This is what you know, we talked about this. Yeah. And then in an automatic writing years later that I did Spirit said, we know this is harder than you thought it would be. And, and boy, howdy, cuz I always say I am not ever doing this. Like we all say that. Please don’t ask me to do this again. It was too hard.

Brian Smith 1:01:40
Yeah, we all say that all of his parents say that. And it’s funny because I even tell people now it’s like, yeah, it’s like when people get a hangover, they say, I’m never gonna drink again. Well, we’ll get back over there. And we’ll forget. And we’ll say, yeah, I’ll do it again. Oh,

Paige Lee 1:01:54
maybe I’ve left my last. Maybe I don’t have to come back.

Brian Smith 1:01:57

Unknown Speaker 1:02:00
I don’t know.

Brian Smith 1:02:01
Yeah. Well, no, I don’t, I forgot. I know. A lot of people say that. They’re never going to do it again. But I said it myself. I don’t know. I’m saying now. I don’t know.

Paige Lee 1:02:11
I know. The healing journey is one though, that I mean, for us to be able to sit here and you after only five years, to be able to sit here and say, you know, yes, that we can see some of the gifts in our grief journey. Right. And that on some level, on some level, we have components of our new relationship with our child that is that we love and we cherish and we’re grateful for right. So for us to be able to sit here and say that gives other people hope. And that’s really what the journey I feel like the the journey is never over. It is a journey. It’ll be over. But, but but but it really is about kind of getting, you just want to keep progressing forward and getting to this point where you can find gratitude and peace, and in this reality that our child died, right? Because if we don’t, if we don’t get to that point, I feel like I feel like it’s a life of sadness. Whereas if we can get to that point, then I feel like we really have opened up potential, which I know I feel and it seems that you do as well. Yeah, for a life that truly does have joy again. Whereas before, we never thought that would even be possible ever again.

Brian Smith 1:03:20
Yeah, we’re back to the choice thing again, because the way I look at it is you know, I’ve got so much time to I called it a presence sentence first, when Shayna first I’m like, I gotta presence presence it I don’t know how long it is, I don’t really see it so much as a sentence anymore. But whatever time I have left, I can I can either choose to make it fulfilling, or I could choose to suffer. And it’s like, I might as well choose to make it fulfilling. You know what I’m gonna be here, because the days are the same either way, that same amount of time. That’s right.

Paige Lee 1:03:49
And it’s like every Well, we have choices every day anyway, right? It’s like we choose, you know, we can choose to have a good day or a bad day, we can choose to get mad at the person who just, you know, cut us off on the road, or we can choose to just, you know, take a deep breath and not say anything. My biggest challenge in life right now. Yeah. You know, I mean, so we have choices all the time we can choose to take care of our body or not, we can our body or not, we can choose to drink water. We can choose to, you know, anything, we can choose to pray, we can choose not to pray, we can choose to reach out to somebody else. We can choose not to do that. I mean, constantly, every day, all day long. We make choices. This is another choice. And I’m just here to tell you it’s another choice that if you make it it will lead you toward a good place on your healing journey.

Brian Smith 1:04:34
Yeah, yeah, I agree. And it’s, it’s, you know, I guess I’m almost 60. So it’s something we learn after a while because people I think we, we think we don’t have a choice the way we feel I was listening to a book this morning. And the guy starts off with the premise of we can’t control our feelings. So we can only control what we do. And I’m like, I gotta push back on that a little bit. I think we can control our feelings to a certain extent not directly, but we can If we can learn to choose our thoughts wisely, our thoughts can control our feelings. And we can, we can choose gratitude or choose to be in sorrow. It is a choice we can make.

Paige Lee 1:05:12
And our words, the words that we choose to say, I used to always say, you know, I’m just forever broken, I’m forever broken, I’ll never, I’ll never be happy. I mean, I’ll never be, I’ll never be happy. I’m just, you know, I’ll never stop crying, I’ll never this, I’ll never that. I’ll never he’ll never, you know, and words will power and it’s when we choose to, we have to, we have to write a different story. You know, it’s like, is this the story we want to write? And is this where we want to stay? Or do we want to write a new story? And what would that look like, if you could put yourself you know, two or three or four years into your journey if your child just died? And if you could Project 234 years into your future? What do you what do you see? What do you want that to look like? Do you want to still be saying to yourself, I will never heal? I will never get over this. You know what I mean? I will never, you know, never, never, never, never? And is or, or would you choose to have a life that says I am healing. And I miss my child. But I’m so grateful for you know, and it’s so those are, those are things that we have a choice to make all the time. And yeah, it’s an interesting exercise to go through. Because people don’t realize that the actions they take today will affect their reality tomorrow, and the next day and the next day.

Brian Smith 1:06:34
Yeah, that’s lovely. But then I think that’s so important. Because even though I felt like I was never going to heal, I remember going to a meeting of parents whose children died. And there was a woman there is, but 10 or 15 years after her daughter dying, just like I still go to the gravesite, like, I was like, every day or something. And she was just as angry as she was the day she died. I’m like, okay, even though I said, I’m not going to heal. I know, I don’t want to be that woman. So at least I set a goal for myself. It’s like if I’m going to be here, because that was that wasn’t a given. But if I’m going to be here, I don’t want to be like that.

Paige Lee 1:07:07
Yeah, there you go. I used to teach. I used to do helping parents heal. In person classes in Boise. I started the Boise chapter. And I and then I used to do grief classes. This is a long time ago, like 2014, maybe I can’t remember. And I would have these grief classes and workshops that I was doing for people. And I had this one woman and you know, God loved her. But she she did not want to heal she she really liked her story. And she wanted to stay on story. And and that’s fine. If that’s what she chooses, then that’s fine. And that’s her path. But I just realized I couldn’t help her. Because I can, I can only help somebody who wants to heal, we have to want to heal. And so sooner or later, she’ll get to the place, I hope, and I pray that she’ll want to heal. But until until we do want that, well, the universe will give us what we asked for. And we can choose to keep telling ourselves those same old stories and use those words. have never and always and you know those words that are so belittling and so keep us just stagnant.

Brian Smith 1:08:12
I want to ask you one last question. If you could pick one tool that helped you the most, what would that tool be

Paige Lee 1:08:18
meditation? Hands down. I don’t even have to think about it. You know, it was just I tried so hard to meditate. I had these. I don’t even remember what they were but these free guided, you know, meditations are some of them I purchased? And have you read my book? I don’t I hate to just say everything. But no, I’m not trying to. I’m not trying to put you on the spot. I’m sorry, I just tell you a story that’s in the book that I just could never, you know, it’s like, okay, close your eyes and, you know, walk, you know, walk down the path and you get to the bridge and you go over the bridge. And you know, I would do all that, you know, I’m gonna with this anticipation. And then you know, I’d get to the beach, and then through the fog, and then that way I would just start crying. And I couldn’t get there. I couldn’t get to that point where they said, and here comes your beloved. And you know, I just couldn’t get to that point. Yeah, so I tried and tried and tried. But the thing is, I never quit trying. I tried again and again and again. I tried every day. And finally one day, I saw Brian approaching me through the fog. Wow. And then that you know, and we and we hugged and that let you know, I just cried like a baby. But I there’s Um, oh shoot. I’m gonna forget his name. If I think of that. I’ll let you know. Craig Hogan. Uh, you know, Craig he does some amazing I did his meditations. I met Brian many times and Craig’s work. I met my dad who passed in 2012. In his work so he has some very powerful guided meditations. You know, Dr. Mark pick stick with his meditation was was tremendous for me at the last conference that helping parents heal did and The next Yeah, that was huge for me. So for so meditation has just been. And now I’ve learned over the last five years or so I do mantra, I repeat the omashu Avaya, which means I bow to the divine God. And there is such power in mantra that I just recite the mantra, and I can almost immediately be in that restful, peaceful place where I can connect with Brian. And so that’s my tool. Yeah, a lot of a lot of people use, you know, pendulum and things like that. And I was talking about this last night. And that’s great. It’s just and that was the first tool I learned actually was pendulum to communicate. And I just for me, it just wasn’t the right one. And I just knew that and I knew that that meditation without meditation in silence was going to be I just knew that that’s what I needed and wanted. And that’s what’s proven to be true for me.

Unknown Speaker 1:10:58

Brian Smith 1:10:58
yeah, I think it’s important to let everybody know that every, everybody has a different path a different way. I interviewed a young woman a little while ago, who people told her to meditate after her mother passed away into yoga, and she said it was too quiet for her. So her mind would just start racing. So she tried different things, and ended up being weightlifting was the thing for her. But anything that we can do mindfully does so when people hear meditation, like I have to sit cross legged in silence, you know, it could be a walking meditation, it could be going for a walk. For me, I like I like guided meditations. I also like listening to meditative music. Like I listen to a lot of pure time music. When I’m when I’m doing my meditations, and I find that works for me. So everybody needs to find what works for themselves. But I like you know, some sort of mindfulness I think, is really important for everybody to try to find.

Paige Lee 1:11:46
And that’s really what the mantra does is, is help you stay focused so that your mind doesn’t wander, right. And the other thing for me was hiking. I mean, we’re so blessed. We have these beautiful foothills that surround our Valley, here in the Boise Valley. And I just, I hear Brian, so clearly, when I’m hiking on those, I just, I like the dirt. And he just speaks to me, and God speaks to me. You know, my God speaks to me and my church, when I’m out in the hills, and I just love it. So those two things saved my life, I like to like to believe, you know, Brian saved my life if he hadn’t come to me. And if I had not heard him out loud with my ears, which is what launched me on my spiritual journey. I may not be here today, you know, I may have chosen a different path. But he did. And God and the universe continued to put opportunities in front of me. And thank the Lord, I followed those opportunities. And I said, Yes, yes, yes, yes to everyone. And, and even though even fighting all the way, you know, many times had to had to be nudged numerous times by them before I acted. And the rewards are tremendous. But the rewards are beyond my wildest expectations. And I know that’s easy for me to say now, because it’s been 12 years. So it’s like I say that, and I know how impossible that can sound to some of you, who who’s you know, whose loved one has died, you know, in the last even last couple of years. But I’m just here to tell you my story in my truth, and to tell you that that can be your truth, too. So that’s why we wrote the book, my son channeled a lot of the book, and a lot really wrote a lot of it, he was a very beautiful, gifted writer. And obviously still is, yeah,

Brian Smith 1:13:34
yeah. Yeah. Paige, it’s been wonderful having you, I appreciate you being so open and willing to share, to help other people, he’ll know what your journey has been. And to be an example of where we can, you know, aspire to get to, whether it’s been, you know, five weeks, or five months or five years, you know, since our loved one, in a transition that there is, there’s light at the end of the tunnel, if we just we just got to, you know, get through it.

Paige Lee 1:13:59
There is and to not be afraid, because I this year 2020 is all about authenticity, I think, and we’re really being called to open up to our true selves, I feel like and when I when I put this book out this year, I mean, there’s some stuff in there people like people might think I’m crazy. And I finally am at the point where I don’t care. They think I’m crazy. I know, I’m not crazy, you know, other grieving people will know that I’m not crazy. But we have to not be afraid, you know, we have to just trust in the process, trust in our God, trust in our loved one, that they’re going to hold our hand and guide us along the way. And to just believe that you can get through this you can get through this and that there is as you say, light at the end of the tunnel. So there is joy in life again. So he will see them again as you say we will absolutely.

Brian Smith 1:14:53
Thanks so much for doing this and have a good night.

Unknown Speaker 1:14:57
Thank you. Bye, everybody. Thanks, Brian. Bye Bye

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