On my day off this week I happily binge watched Netflix, particularly a show called “Long Island Medium”. The show focuses on Theresa Caputo and her family in Long Island, New York. While we learn about Theresa and her family, the main focus of the show is Theresa’s ability to channel the souls of individuals who have passed away and are now on “the other side”. Whether or not you believe in the premise of the show or the ability of Theresa Caputo, the overall message of the show is one that everyone can identify with: even though loved ones are not physically on the earth anymore, they are still with you.
It can be hard to believe that someone you can’t see or talk to is with you, but I’ve found that the key is to not forcefully look for “signs” that you can interpret as validation or whatever you want them to be. For example, as much as I would like something as blatantly obvious as a phone call, light flicker, or neon sign conveying a message from my grandfather, it just isn’t going to happen, especially not on command.
The beauty of reminders of the people we love lies in the small things. The “blood moon” this week is a phenomenon of nature, but it also immediately made me think of how my grandpa would always let me know that there was going to be a full moon—which we frequently would watch growing up with root beer floats and popcorn—or some sort of natural occurrence. This occasion could be significant for me then because I’m reminded of memories and part of my grandpa.
The same day that the blood moon occurred, I happened to see, oh so briefly, an old Ford Fairlane, which was a slightly different model of an old car that my grandpa inherited after his brother died, and would drive us around in in the summer months. What better signifier that my grandpa is still a part of my life than to have even the smallest experience that triggers an avalanche of memories.
Even in my day-to-day life I am reminded of my grandpa’s eccentric personality because of my job. Working in retail means never having a second to think, and means constant interruption. Whenever I get irritated that there are a million things going on around me or that I am pulled away from my work by a customer, as soon as I say “Do you need help with anything?” I immediately hear Grandpa’s voice in my head say “Oh, only all I can get!”, just like he always did when out and about. At the time I was embarrassed, but now it makes me smile.
Instead of forcing myself to go through the pain of wishing my Grandpa was only a phone call away or dwelling on what’s left of him in the physical world, I choose to focus on how much of his soul is still with me. I will never be able to rid myself of him and I think that the people who decide to focus only on the sadness of someone being gone are short-sighted and looking at life with the wrong perspective—they’re certainly missing out on a lot.