When you lose someone that you love, you wait for a sign that they are still somehow connected to you. On the day of my mother’s funeral, March 5th, it was beautiful and sunny with just a little coolness in the air. When we got to the cemetery, early in the afternoon and they lowered her into the ground, all of a sudden, it got so warm and the sun started shining even more brightly. You can think I’m crazy if you want, but I knew that it was a sign from our mother that she was at peace and happy with her roadside spot in her final resting place. Seriously, I couldn’t have picked a better spot for her – she was always a nosy parker, and now, she can watch the world go by, see who will join her next at Mount Sinai Memorial Park and even have a clear view of the planes flying overhead (she always had to point out whenever a plane flew past her condo or over her car, or just anytime she saw one. I called her “the air-traffic controller”).
The second sign came once shiva (7 days of mourning in Judaism) was over. We had lit a candle that was supposed to last for 7 days. No, we didn’t get a lame miracle where it lasted for 14 days. The interesting thing was that one the seventh day, it went out when my oldest sister left the room, and I was alone. Why is this interesting you ask? When my mother died, my oldest sister left the room, I was holding my mother’s hand, and within 30 seconds of her leaving the room, my mother passed away. I don’t think that this was a sign that I was her favourite, really her actions demonstrated this, or at least I like to think so. It was, I believe, because she did not want my sister, who is also suffering from breast cancer, to be more upset than she needed to be. I think that she knew that I needed to be there at that moment, but she also knew that it wasn’t the best thing for either of my sisters. When the shiva candle went out when I was alone in the room, I think it was just reinforcing the message.
After that, there was really nothing. I was really upset and giving up hope that I’d ever hear from my mother again. Day after day would pass, and nothing. As much as I miss her, I thought maybe I’d have to live with those two tiny messages. Then today, something amazing happened. I called my oldest sister crying because it’s our Mom’s birthday on April 15, and now is the time that I’d start looking for cards for her. It made no sense, but it really bothered me today. My sister told me that I could still get her a card, but that only made me cry harder because I couldn’t give it to her. I mean, where am I supposed to send it? Judy Schneiderman, C/O Heaven, #1 Divine Drive, Cloud 13, 90210?
Anyway, I decided to torture myself and look at birthday cards for her. Maybe I would buy one, just for old time’s sake, and leave it at the cemetery for her. As I was leaving the store, Papyrus to be exact, I spotted a table of gift books. They had some cute ones, Advice from Coco Chanel, The Newlywed Cookbook, among others. Then, I spotted the very book that you see up there in the photo, “You Drive Like An A$$h&le”. Why is this so special? My mother used to have the worst road rage, and that was one of her rants! She would scream something to this effect, shake her tiny fist at the offending driver, then flip them the bird. She said other things, but I’m a lady, and would never type them here. I would then make fun of her, and she’d smile her million dollar smile, after telling me that she wasn’t wrong. This was the sign that I was looking for. What are the odds that I would walk into a card store looking for a birthday greeting for my deceased road-raged mother, and spot this book, which I’ve never seen before? I think it was my mother’s way of giving me a little reminder of her, and making me laugh, when all I wanted to do was cry.
You can think I’m making things up, or reading into things. You may have your own tale of seeing a butterfly, a dragonfly, a ladybug, a mysterious phone call or even feel someone flick your hair. That’s great for you, as for me, I’ll take this sign from my little Mommy any day of the week.