Monday, October 11, 2010

Messages from Beyond

by Kate Collins

As many of you know, my beloved husband passed away two weeks ago today. He was my best friend and soul mate, my rock and my hero. It took us many years to find each other and came along at a time when I no longer believed in fairly tale romances, even while I was writing them.

My husband had enormous energy. No one could believe he was fifteen years older than me because he had the good health and stamina of a man half his age. But he had twenty-two year old grafts in his heart, and he knew they wouldn’t last forever. He always said he was on borrowed time. His wish was that he would go out after winning a court case, and that was exactly what he did. Not his time line, but on his terms.

I’m not superstitious. I don’t believe in seances. I’ve never seen or felt a ghost. But what happened after his death was incredible. It was at the end of the most horrific four days of my life. I was in pain inside and out. Then I received a phone call from my dearest friend, the person in whom I would entrust my life, the person I trust most beside my husband. She’s a teacher and the most pragmatic, down-to-earth, no-nonsense person you’d ever want to meet. She doesn’t believe in ghosts either.

She was busy teaching a room full of first graders, and suddenly a vision of my husband appeared. He was in the place he loved most, Key West, and he was talking to me! He was saying to my friend, but using the nick name only he used for me, “You can do this.” She thought she imagined it and so she ignored it. But he would not be ignored. He kept appearing throughout the day in exactly that same manner, saying exactly that same message, until she was so spooked, she wrote it all down in an email and sent it to me, asking me not to think she’d gone crazy.

Immediately, that image was replaced by the smiling face of my husband, and then she saw him walking away, up a street, still smiling. Message delivered, he seemed to be saying. And she hasn’t had any visions since.

I can’t tell you how comforting that was. I instantly felt his energy around me. It gave me the strength to give a eulogy at his funeral. And at the end of that long day, after the family had gathered for food at a local restaurant on a rainy day, another wondrous thing happened. A double rainbow appeared.

It was so extraordinary, people poured out of the restaurant to stand in the rain, with the sun shining and black clouds overhead, everyone taking pictures with cell phones. The rainbow’s lower arch was so brilliant, it seemed to be lit from the ground up. We could see the beginning of it just beyond the parking lot, and it arched over the restaurant to the opposite end of the lot.

We gazed up at it, smiling. It was a sign of hope. A sign that things would be okay. Different, and no less painful, but okay.

My fairy tale romance didn’t have the ending I would have written for it, but it did have a rainbow at the end. This is the photo of that rainbow. If you can enlarge it, you will see how it seems to glow from the bottom.

I wanted to share this with you because all of you have been so incredibly kind and supportive. I hope it makes you smile and gives you hope, too.

My best,