Updated: May 13, 2020
My aunt asked me to brush her hair and then he asked if I’d do the same for him. Even in their weakest moment they still wanted to look good for one another. My uncle died only a few days later and she followed four days after that.
My personal journey with isolation was mostly mental and emotional and it pre-dated the global pandemic by about eight months. I was trying to overcome what I called a series of unfortunate events. Most of it was connected to loss. No one processes something the same. We cannot see someone else's pain, so we cannot know what they are going through. Everyone's pain and struggles deserve to be validated. It is abstract, but it is real. I feel this current situation in the world will make a lot of people feel more than just physical isolation. Isolation can be your environment, it can be change from your normal routine, not seeing the people you are used to seeing. Death. Mental health struggles. Injury. Divorce. Illness. Lots of things can cause it.
For me, I got to six months down the road on it, or six months down into a hole, and I was feeling very sad to the point at times I was inconsolable. I tried a lot of things, especially if it would help me be around people. I made plans with people to go for a coffee or a lunch. I felt bad because I cried in front of pretty much everyone who gave me the gift of their time. I was very thankful for their patience and generosity. I think sometimes people don't know what to say when you’re struggling. Often all you need is someone to check in and ask how you are doing, tell you they are thinking of you and that you are loved.
I experienced an unexpected friend exodus when I went through my divorce. Other people I know have told me friends have seemed to step back during a death or illness. My experience then and now is even though people exited my life, other people step forward. Even though I was struggling, some people were really there for me. I knew other people around me were struggling too and I was trying to be there for them the best I could. I hope it was evident I was also trying.
I was seeking answers from a lot of things and an opportunity came about to go to a medium. I did not necessarily believe this would give me any answers, but figured maybe it would be a good distraction. It ended up providing me with comfort and some relief for my grief. It made me feel surrounded by love, supported by whatever source of energy remains when our loved ones depart and gave me some very tangible "homework" that I took to heart.
I was told I needed to reclaim my power. I was told specifically to read the book Mary Magdalene Revealed, (a book the medium had not read and that was not published when any of my loved ones were alive). I was told it was about women rising. I was told I am loved and that my departed loved ones are with me. For what it was worth, it felt comforting. Even if the messages could be dismissed as not real, they were still helpful. They said they wanted me to pick myself up. They said life is for the living.
I was not living my best life in any way at that moment, so it helped me to realize I had to try to stop being so sad.
In my reading my uncle and aunt who passed away came forward first and clearly provided substantiating details of our private times together. The medium described the last time I was with them both in the hospital, where they were both in their final days. I had the honour of witnessing one of their last moments together. They had been separated for a couple of weeks,but were just six rooms apart. I had some nurses help me move my uncle into my aunts room with their permission. They were both struggling for sure, but it was obvious they wanted to see one another. When my uncle was at her bedside, I whispered that he was there and she opened her eyes. She smiled and said “hello sweetheart,” and he replied “hello my love”. They said some sweet things to one another and looked over at me. I apologized for sobbing. My aunt asked me to brush her hair and then he asked if I’d do the same for him. Even in their weakest moment they still wanted to look good for one another. My uncle died only a few days later and she followed four days after that. The medium described to me the loving way they held each other’s hands. She also recounted my final moments with my aunt, when I said goodbye left her room for the last time.
During the reading, my grandfather referenced a photograph he wanted me to find. I was told it was in an album or a box in some unknown location and if I wanted to take on the quest I could find it. The references to the photo were woven into the reading. He described the photo, which based on the description I had never seen. I was told he was very proud of the photo in which he wore a military uniform. The medium said she could see he was young and handsome and that it was a head and shoulders photo.
When I returned home I pondered the information I was given for a day. The following evening, I went to my basement and retrieved the only box of old family photos I have. It was only with me because I had used it to make the photo slideshow for my uncle and aunt’s memorial. As I flipped through the photos I enjoyed seeing my grandparents, dad, uncles and aunt when they were young.
At the bottom of the box was the photo of my grandfather.
In the time since the reading I have contemplated when and how I gave my power away. Even if by some cosmic or spiritual intervention, the fact was, overtime I had. It was so gradual that I had not even noticed. It was the result of all the cumulative sadness, loss, disappointment I had experienced over two years, maybe more. After being reminded I am surrounded by love, that I am strong and capable, I knew I had everything I needed to rise again, but I had forgotten where to look for it. It was the shortest journey I have ever taken, because the answers were quite simply inside me.