Do you believe in ghosts? Do you imagine that those who have passed can communicate with you? That the ones you loved so much can pop into your thoughts regularly to make you laugh, or cry, or remember that particular ingredient in the recipe you’re struggling with?
I’ve got a few of those. Maybe they’re not so much ghosts as spirits, or their former selves wearing angel wings and messing with us. Are they giving guidance? Or maybe they’re just inner common sense speaking up. Are they actually connecting with us? I admit, I kinda believe it all, although Grandma would have been very particular about the kind of wings she donned.
Yep, Grandma. That’s who keeps me on my toes. See, this grandma isn’t like most grandmas. This one is my mom’s mom. Dad’s mom was a sweet, tiny, Italian-speaking rustic woman wearing an apron and feeding us fried meatballs on a fork for breakfast. She was what I imagine to be the normal kind of grandma.
Mom’s mom was not like that. Grandma was beautiful, always coiffed and dressed to the nines. She knew the difference between white, and egg shell, and pale beige. It wasn’t pale taupe or even fawn, it was pale beige. Grandma used to visit when I was young and stay in my bedroom with me. We’d talk and laugh all night. When the birds started to sing, she’d wink and say, “Get some sleep. We can talk more tomorrow night.”
Grandma drove a shiny Cadillac that was updated every five years. She had beautiful clothes and jewelry, and fantastic taste in, well, everything. She was quick to teach me to enjoy trends, but always seek out the classics when shopping for clothing. She knew her hairdresser’s birthday and the names of her dry cleaner’s kids. She loved to play bridge and often held elegant, seasonally-themed card parties with her lady friends.
Now, don’t get confused. Grandma came from a humble beginning. She was always a classy lady, but back then it showed in her straight back and the erect tilt of her head. She married well—the second time. It wasn’t that she married a super wealthy man. She married well in ways that matter. Pap would give her whatever made her happy. He respected her, loved her, and even happily smoked his cigars in the freezing garage on the coldest winter days at her request. He was a real good one, and she was as much his dream come true as he was for her. He provided her with a lovely home, a gorgeous crystal chandelier in the dining room, and several mink coats and stoles in her closets.
But there was a marriage before Pap. A not-so good one. I’ve always had complete admiration for the divorced woman who raised two children alone in the tentative post-depression era before Mr. Right came along. She taught me more with her general life attitude than I realized until many, many years later. When she passed, she had lost much of herself to a series of stokes, but something extremely telling happened one afternoon as Mom and I visited her, at the time comfortable at home. It was tough that she thought I was my mother, and that Mom was just that nice lady that came with me. At one point, as we all sipped soda Pap brought us in polished crystal glasses (always serving her, even though she had no clue who he was either, sigh,) my beautiful grandma, wearing a gorgeous robe and matching slippers, looked around the beautifully-appointed living room and nodded.
“I have nice things,” she said, almost surprised, but the undertone was more like a confirmation. As though, deep behind her jumbled memory, she was thinking, Of course I do!
I miss her every day. Her generosity (she once bought me a piano,) her recognition of the good things in life, her wonderful old-world recipes (the best perogies and stuffed cabbage you ever tasted,) and her laughter. I still sometime here it.
And those minks? Well, two of them have found their way into my own closet. It’s been many, many years since either of them have been treated kindly. They just hang and sort of sadly lament in the darkness. Ahh the life they led. The travel, the entertainment, the enjoyment—Marti Gras in New Orleans, Havana Cuba just before the fall, Las Vegas. They have Grandma’s memories, like living DNA, twisted into every single tuft and stitch.
And every night before I climb into bed, I open that tiny closet dedicated to Grandma’s minks and my laundry basket, run a land lovingly down a sleeve and say, “G’night Grandma.”
My dreams of her are startlingly real. Situations randomly occur that make me smile and know she’s active. I can smell the Channel. I can hear the click of her high heels. Her laughter on the breeze.
Yep, she is the angel in my closet, I cherish the fact that she’s remained so close, and I’m grateful for her help as I work through my own day-to-day life challenges. Sometimes, when I can’t sleep, I imagine talking and laughing with her until the first bird chirps.
“Get some sleep,” she says. “We can talk more tomorrow night.”
So … Which angel keeps in touch with you?
Welcome to ANGEL MOMENTS. My views are in this blog, but I’d love to hear your thoughts on angels, how they influence your life, and how you experience the amazing blessing.
Eighteen-year-old orphan Gracie wants a normal life, but a shocking set of unexpected wings and a deadly war change everything.
THE ORPHANS, book one of The Lost Race trilogy. Coming November 2018!