In the summer of 2010 I had the following dream. It felt significant but I didn’t know what it meant. At the time we were in the process of selling my parents’ house to the son of the neighbors across the road (Keith). My brothers and I were standing in the front yard of my parents’ house. It felt like springtime, and the sky was a little overcast as if it might rain.
“Do you think Keith will let us dig some plants out of the back yard?” I asked. “We’ve been so busy cleaning out the house I haven’t had time to do it. But I want to move some of Mom’s garden to my yard.”
“I doubt it,” my brother John said.
“I doubt he would want them, “I said. “He is probably going to mow back there and then the plants will be all gone.”
The dream changed and we were now in my brothers’ old bedroom. This room was right inside the house from where we were standing in the yard. The atmosphere felt heavy and depressing. John leaned against the closet door. “Boy, I don’t feel very good,” he said.
When I last left off from Mom’s story, I’d been having a lot of contact and dream visitations, and had by this time been to THREE different professional psychics (more on that later) all of whom independently confirmed the validity of the information I was getting. I believed in it enough to begin to wonder if this sudden increase in psychic abilities and activity meant something for my life other than just getting over the passing of my mother. Should I be using this somehow?
At first I did the only thing I knew to do. I started reading like crazy, as many books on the subject, and related subjects: After Death Communication, books written by mediums (biographical and instructional), lucid dreaming, reincarnation, psychic development, meditation, astral projection, ghosts – anything that seemed relevant and had credentials like good reviews, authors with good reputations, etc. At this point I wasn’t necessarily ready to just swallow all of this stuff hook line and sinker, but I thought that reading many different viewpoints would help sort things out. If practically every authority was giving the same information about some topics, then that information has a higher probability of being accurate, I reasoned.
In the early spring of 2010 my husband and I were talking one evening about his mother’s ghosts and her extreme fear of them. Bill’s mother is 90 years old. Her second husband, George, committed suicide about a year before my mother did but in a much more dramatic way: he shot himself in the head. I was at work the day this happened. Bill called me and after insisting that I sit down he told me what happened. George took out his false teeth and emptied his pockets onto the nightstand in the bedroom. Then went out into the back yard with a revolver, stuck it into his mouth, and pulled the trigger. Bill’s mother was in another part of the condo but she heard the noise when the gun went off. She found him in the back yard and went screaming to the neighbor’s. They called 911 and the rest is what you would expect.
Bill’s sister stayed with their mother for a couple months after that happened. During that time they could sense George in the condo. They could hear him walking around and even feel him brush past them. Bill spent one night in the condo (the night after it happened) and he said he slept with his back to the window all night, for fear he would see George standing outside in the back yard or worse – looking in the window!
I will come clean – I have been a Christmas hater for many years. Why? Because almost all of the people I used to spend Christmas with are gone! And the places I used to spend Christmas at are gone! The great die off in my family started in the 1990’s, although my grandparents were all gone by 1984. Once your aunts and uncles start dropping like flies the holidays have a way of becoming about as welcome as … well .. flies!
Every year it would start. I’d think about the Aunt Farm. My mother’s parents had a small farm. When they became unable to take care of themselves, three of my mother’s maiden or widowed sisters moved back in to take care of them. Once they had both died, the sisters found this to be a comfortable living arrangement and over the years you get aunt + farm = Aunt Farm. One of them had a boyfriend who became known as The Advaark. You can see why I miss these people – they were funnier than hell!
The Aunt farm is of course long gone. The house is still there owned by one of my cousin’s adult children. But the place – the endless card game, the bottomless coffee pot, the constant stream of puns and witty jokes – all relegated to the dust bins of history.
The remnant would gather at my parents’ house. No kids, no excitement, a much smaller buffet table. And then someone would remark, “Well, there’s another Christmas over with.” Cheery. Prozac anyone?
In the summer of 2010 an unbelievable piano falls in my lap (continued from Synchronicity, Dreams, and Antique Pianos). After it is safely installed in our house I remember that I have all of my childhood piano music packed in a couple of file boxes in the cubbyhole. So I venture into the cubbyhole and drag it all out. As I am sitting there in the bedroom sorting this music, I being to remember and think.
I got a piano when I was 12 years old. It was a hand-me-down from the church. A huge old upright, it was once a player piano until someone did a – what would you call it – a player-ectomy. It still had the place where you put the rolls in and since that mechansim was long gone it gave you a pretty good view of the hammers and soundboard. Anyway, this thing got moved into my parents’ basement – which served the function of way today would be called a family room. My mother produced a big pile of piano music. Where did this come from? I never thought about it then, but now I realized it must have come from the Aunt Farm! And given the age of the stuff, at least some of it must have belonged to Grandpa Anderson (my mother’s father). From what I knew then he was a traditional old time fiddler. What I didn’t know at the time was that he was also classically trained on violin and piano in the 1890’s – early 1900’s.
While going through this box I found it – two handwritten manuscripts of tunes he’d written down, in the 1930’s it appears, most likely to teach my uncle how to play. Between the two of them they have 116 songs of varying age and origin – a very interesting collection! And more than enough upon which to base a CD! Funny thing is though, I couldn’t figure out how they got in there when I’d never seen them before!
I decided to interrupt the long dialog I have going on my experiences with my mother to write about a series of events that happened just this past week. It felt like a major milestone for me – instead of these things being entirely an “inner” experience, for the first time they were occuring specifically for the edification of someone else, and I was the intermediary.
Last year some long time friends of ours from one of our musical pursuits was diagnose with lukemia. This couple had suffered a great deal over the year before that due to an accident suffered by the wife – Toni – when she fell off a ladder. Having her husband Bob dealt this blow while they were still struggling to deal with the fallout from Toni’s injuries. She made a pretty remarkable recovery – we all feared she would be confined to a wheelchair. But as anyone who has gone through something like that knows, there are always long term complications to be dealt with.
I think on some level we all felt that Bob would recover because it would be just too unfair otherwise! We heard through a mutual friend that Bob wasn’t doing well a month or so ago – was still in the hospital undergoing a lot of treatments but things seemed to be taking a turn for the worst.
Then this past weekend I had a dream where I saw Bob’s newspaper obituary. It was brief and I almost forgot about it, but something the next morning jogged my memory. I told Bill about it and suggested that he should call Toni because Bob might not be here much longer if the dream meant what I felt it did.