“I saw you today.
It wasn’t your body obviously, since you’ve been in Heaven for two years now. But it was you. It’s been so long since I’ve physically seen you. But you showed up in the grocery store today. I undeniably felt you there.
I thought I had done all of my grocery shopping for our meals two days beforehand. I usually am really good at getting everything I need, food wise, to last for at least 3 or 4 days. It’s not easy to pack up the baby and head out every day. So I really try to make sure I get everything I need in one trip. Usually if I miss something, my husband will stop at the store on the way home from work.
But on this particular day, I decided to make pasta sauce from scratch since our garden has yielded so many tomatoes. It was the first time I was attempting this. I usually just use the store bought jars of pasta sauce. But it sounded like a fun challenge and I wanted to give it a shot. I quickly realized in the middle of making it that I had forgotten to grab carrots and bay leaves.
I was pretty annoyed with the fact that I’d have to stop this whole production midway through and pack up the kids to head to the store for TWO items. ‘Of course this would happen to me!’ I mean honestly…the ONE time I try to do this and it’s the one time I forgot to grab two of the most important ingredients.
But alas, off to the store we went (kicking and screaming!). I was walking towards the store with a messy shirt, still really annoyed that I just had to grab two things. My attitude was pretty crappy. I was stone faced walking in. I could even feel the tension in my shoulders. But that’s when I saw you.
‘Puppa Marvin?’ I said to myself as I noticed an older gentleman struggling to get a cart out from the line of them. He looked exactly like you from behind. I had to remind myself that you had been gone for a while now. But wow, this man totally stopped me in my tracks. I watched this man for a few seconds. ‘Man, it really does look like you.’
I helped pull a cart out for him and then turned to grab a cart for myself. I loaded the baby inside and that’s when this man turned towards me. His eyes lit up when he saw me. It was your eyes. It was your smile. It’s like we were just reunited. Hi Puppa Marvin.
He struck up a conversation with this jolly personality that you always had. I knew it was you. But I was still guarded in thinking it really could be happening. I silently asked you to prove it to me more. Just give me some kind of concrete answer that this was you, without a doubt.
You wanted to see my baby and you gasped at how big he was. You started joking about his double chin, which reminded you of when you eat too much and fall asleep in the chair sitting up. We joked about how chunky he was looking these days. You kept reiterating that he was so adorable and that he would grow up to be such a handsome young man. You urged me to try baseball with the ‘big mits’ he possessed. You couldn’t get over the size of his hands. You even reached for his hands and I didn’t stop you. I never let strangers touch my little man, yet I let you touch the top of his hands. You stroked them ever so softly and smiled at the same time. ‘You’ll be a fantastic ball player one day, my friend!’
Then you put your arm around me and squeezed my shoulder, giving me a little bit of a side hug. I could feel your embrace. I could smell you. It had been so long since we had hugged. But I felt like I was actually getting one from you in this moment. You patted my back and said, ‘You are an awesome mom, Sis!’
You always used to call me Sis. It was my nickname from the beginning. Whenever you would see me running towards you, you would yell, ‘Hi Sis! It’s good to see you, Sis!’ When we would say goodbye to each other, you would always say, ‘I love you too, Sis!’ When I was hurt or sick you would say, ‘Oh, Sis. I’m so sorry you’re not feeling well!’
Sis. It was always what you called me. I mean…that was ‘our thing.’ It felt so surreal that that’s what came out of this gentleman’s mouth. Of all the things he could have said…Sis!
When I silently asked you to prove it was actually you just seconds before, you came through with flying colors. I wasn’t expecting ‘Sis.’ It caught me completely off guard. My throat started to burn and my eyes welled with tears. It was really you. Really, really you. But I somehow kept it together, even though every part of me being wanted to run up and squeeze you for 10 minutes more.
We parted ways with smiles and a ‘have a great day!’ But I still followed you for a few minutes through the store. I studied your movements. I listened to your voice talking to others around you. I felt you so strongly that I couldn’t leave your side. I didn’t want to walk away. Every time you stopped to look at an item, I stopped too, pretending to be interested in something down the same aisle. I ended buying more than just carrots and bay leaves. You can only look at five different kinds of rice for so long before feeling like you need to put one in your cart.It wasn’t your face, but it was your soul. It was you. I felt you. I knew from second I saw that man trying to pull out a cart from the line of them. I could tell it was you.
I sat in my van and sobbed and sobbed. I was so happy for your visit. But I was also missing you so much. All of my emotions just poured out. I hadn’t forgotten about you, but I also haven’t thought about you for a little while either. Life has just been so busy. I felt guilty for that.
I came home at the same time my husband did. He saw my puffy eyes and dried tear streaks down my face. He was a little freaked out and immediately let out a, ‘WHAT’S WRONG!?’ I jokingly explained that I just saw my dead grandpa in the store.
‘Like his ghost?!’ – he was immediately horrified at the thought of that.
‘Ha! No. Like he channeled himself through another person that looked a lot like him.’
I could see the panic let out of his face as his shoulders relaxed. As crazy as Tim thinks I am, he always supports me in all of my spirit stories.
Thank you for the visit, gramps. This was a reminder that you’re still always here. You’re always here. You’re always around me. Thank you for taking the time to prove it to me on this day. I had no idea how much I needed that visit. I think that’s what makes it so much better. It was so unexpected…the perfect timing.”
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