My take-away was that life can change "on a dime", which I took as a positive sign - no matter how dire our circumstances seem, there is always hope, always a chance of redemption.
After my father died in 2012, I started seeing dimes in the most unusual places...and each time, I felt it was my father "dropping in" to say hello and letting me know he was near. A year later, we poured my father's ashes into the center of a Redwood tree faerie ring, just above the Gualala River.
Following his simple memorial service, as I turned to leave, I found a shiny silver dime on the trail. Since then, I have collected random dimes, which have numbered into the dozens, and which I feel are symbols of communication from him (especially then they turn up in flower pots and other unusual places)!
Last week, just before a big move and starting a new job, I decided to visit my father at his faerie ring in the Gualala Redwoods.
Upon arriving in town, Karen and I stopped at the local market for refreshments and a map. As we stood in the checkout line, it occurred to me that I should bring something as an ofendra (offering) to dad's resting place. I considered flowers, but knew he wouldn't appreciate them much. Then I thought, I'll bring a dime! Then I worried that I might not have one in my wallet to give.
As I thought steadily about finding a dime to offer, I turned back to see Karen flustered, picking up her wallet where she had dropped it on the floor. As she approached me, she said the wallet had nearly leapt out of her hands. And she picked up her wallet, she happened to notice a random dime on the floor. Knowing what it might mean to me, she handed it to me with a quiet smile on her face.
I told her that I'd just been thinking keenly about offering my dad a dime, and worried I might not have one in my wallet to give. I knew it was from my dad, giving me the very dime I should toss into his resting place. We both knew it. We were incredulous and believing at the same time.
We drove out the woods where my dad's ashes lay deep within an earthen hole, in the center of a majestic, burned out tree, with five younger Redwoods surrounding it.
After some hiking, we were still unable to find "his" spot. Unbeknownst to me, Karen silently asked my dad to guide us to him. And within moments, his faerie ring glowed brightly, lit up by the sun, peaking through the dense forest. She called me over, and indeed, it was exactly where we had poured his ashes (along with several vodka cranberries - his favorite), seven years before.
Standing in the center of the faerie ring, I lovingly tossed the dime into the earthen hole, and the entire time we were there, the faerie ring was sunlit, as none others were.
I felt my father with me, supporting, loving, and appreciating my loving relationship with Karen and encouraging me on my path and a new life chapter.