Occasionally, friends ask me to let them know if I am able to make contact with their departed loved one.
Once, a friend Jill* asked me if I could reach her mother who had died when Jill was a teen. I knew little of her family except that her father remarried after her mother’s death, and that the family remained close. She had never shared any details about her mother with me.
Unfortunately, nothing came to me. After several months, I forgot all about her request.
Now don’t ask me why, but spirits often come to me when I’m driving. When they “come in”, it feels as though they are floating behind and a bit to the right of me, and are whispering in my right ear. (Actually, women usually show up on the right, and men on the left, and the closer I feel them to me, the closer a relation they are. For example, a mother will “come in” closer than a grandmother). I then start receiving particular scenes or images, and sometimes I get “associations” with people or situations in my life that are similar to what they are trying to communicate. (For example, if a spirit wants to talk about a divorce, I might spontaneously think about my cousin who is going through a divorce and know there may be similar dynamics at play. Or if the person was in the Navy, I’ll see my own father dressed in his naval uniform.)
So back to the story. I was driving on I-580 through Oakland one day, thinking about what to make for dinner, when I felt Jill’s mother “introduce” herself. I hadn’t seen Jill in a long time, and had no reason to be thinking about her, so this was quite a surprise. As Joann* hovered over my right shoulder, she “showed me” a scene of Jill reading her baby book and holding a lock of blond hair in her cupped hand. She wanted Jill to know that she’d been with her as she reminisced about her happy, early childhood. Apparently, Jill was especially missing Joann and longing to connect with her, which is why Joann was now accessing me, to reassure Jill that she’s still there for her.
I then saw images (in my mind’s eye) of a tan, blond Joann, beautiful and svelte, sitting on the bowsprit of a cabin cruiser. She wore a royal blue, sheath dress, and a colorful and nautical YSL silk neck scarf. She also held a heavy cut-crystal glass of bourbon, straight up. This scene brought Jackie Onassis and Anne Sexton to mind, due to their similar physiques and fashion sense. And I also wondered if the association to the famous poet, Anne Sexton, reflected Joann’s own ambivalence about family life or living at all.
From these images, I used my imagination to infer that she was stylish, that they had enjoyed boating/cruising, and that she was an alcoholic. Joann liked to think of herself as American Royalty, much like “Jackie O.”. I “felt her” as a proud, elegant, and self-centered woman, who was a better wife than mother. Lastly, she conveyed that she wanted her husband to know how much she had loved him, and to thank him for all the little things he did for her, and for being such a loving husband and father. She was happy that he’d found someone else to love him, who was a good mother to their children. She ended our connection with an image of herself dressing in her bedroom, as her husband gently zipped up the back of her slender, red sleeveless dress.
When I arrived home, I called Jill and asked her to sit down. I told her that her mother had spontaneously reached out to me all these months later, and I described all that she shared. Jill confirmed that she had been looking at her baby book and holding a lock of blond hair from her first haircut earlier that same day. She confirmed that her mother loved to shop at Neiman Marcus and Saks 5th Avenue, and dressed very stylishly in solid bold colors, often in narrow sheath dresses. She also had a large collection of fine silk scarves. She also confirmed that despite her glamourous image, she was an abusive alcoholic and that her death was an unfortunate result of her addiction.
Jill was glad to have heard from her mother after so many years, and to know she is still with her, loves her, and is sorry for her alcoholism. I finished our call by saying I hoped that she would pass on the message to her father, which her mother very much wanted him to receive. She wanted to thank him and to apologize to him as well, for “leaving” so soon.
* Jill and Joann are pseudonyms.