In this after-death communication dream, Crystal has a visit with her beloved Grandfather – an important male figure in her life, who through his love and dedication, was a stabilizing force and great source of comfort to her in such a turbulent world.
“My grandfather died at 92 years old on the morning of October 30, 2014. The last few years of his life he had experienced a gradual decline. He had been diagnosed with both prostate and bladder cancer. He had gone through radiation, but the cancer persisted and spread to his bone. At the age of 90, his doctors finally convinced him to give up treatment and go on hospice.”
“Several years previous, during open heart surgery, he died on the table. After the surgery, he described to the family an encounter he had with God. He spoke to God and asked to stay to take care of my grandmother, who is in a wheelchair after an accident several years prior. After the surgery, he lived with a very strong determination to be around to take care of her. He also had a personal goal to live to 100 years old. These two things combined kept him going a lot longer than anyone expected.”
“Living longer came with a cost. He started to lose his memory; which was very difficult for him. He described to me that it was like a wall in his mind blocking him from where he needed to go. He would have to pull over when driving or pause when meeting someone he knew so he could find a way to work around the wall in his brain and recall the person he was talking to or where he was going. Although he was very bright and determined, eventually his mind was no longer under his control.”
“By the time he died, he was unable to hold a meaningful conversation. He would at times say the right thing at the right time or laugh at a joke appropriately, but for the most part it was difficult for him. He couldn’t put words together anymore in the way he wanted to. He also lost his ability to care for himself physically, because of his pain. My grandmother who had been in his care for years took on the role of being his caretaker. But in his last days he was living in a care center, as he required full-time care.”
“The one blessing of all of it was that once he was able to let go of his attempts to control his mind and fight memory loss, he became less depressed. The memory loss, and loss of abilities had been very difficult for him; but in his final days all of that difficulty had slipped away, leaving him happy as he always was.”
“On the morning of his death I gathered with family to say goodbye. He had died earlier in the morning and I arrived just after he had been cleaned up and dressed. Standing at his bedside I could still sense his presence, as I leaned over him and gave him one last embrace.”
“After a long day of being with family, I went home and went to bed exhausted. Sometime in the middle of the night I was awakened by a very loud sound. It sounded like a honk of a horn on a car – only like it was coming from the wall just above my bed. There was also a very large flash of light that filled the room. It was like a car had driven into my room, flashed the brights and honked the horn.”
“Having been startled out of a deep sleep by this, my heart was pounding so loud I could feel it in my throat. In a panic, I began to try and make sense of what had happened. Had it been the rental car I had in my driveway being broken into? Was there someone just outside my door waiting to come in? I suddenly felt unsafe and like there might be someone in my home. I ran to the front door to make sure it was locked. After locking my door and noticing an empty house, I went back to my room and climbed under the covers. Feeling a little safer, I went back to sleep.”
“As I began to drift off, I found myself entering the care center. I was coming to see my grandmother, who had fallen early in the week of my grandfather’s death, and found herself in the same care center as my grandfather for her rehabilitation. In a strange way, a fall that was a blessing. Having been separated for a little more than a month from my grandfather, my grandmother’s accident gave her the opportunity to be at the bedside when my grandfather passed.”
“As I entered the care center, I was surprised to see my grandfather sitting in one of the chairs near the entrance. His legs were crossed and he looked at ease. As I walked in, he immediately looked up at me and smiled. “Hi Crystal,” he said, as he stood up and walked towards me. I froze. I was in shock of his recognition of who I was. For months he had called me by my mother’s name or by no name at all. He was always happy to see me, but it had been a long time since I felt he really knew who I was.”
“I also found myself in awe of his grace, as he strolled toward me. Seeing him on his feet for that long was something I hadn’t seen in a long time, and seeing him walk without pain was something I hadn’t seen for even longer. Time stood still as I watched him come towards me. He was dressed like he always had. His white hair combed straight back. He was wearing a white t-shirt with shiny buttons and had his glasses case and pens in the pocket ready to study for his next sermon. He appeared so normal and at ease.”
“Standing face to face, he reached out for a hug. “Thank you for coming,” he said before he pulled away and stepped back. I looked at him for a moment and smiled. I didn’t really know what to say, but I felt happy looking at him standing there so gracefully. The profoundness of the moment wore off and him standing there became normal again, as though this was just another day for the both of us. He was himself again, and I was very happy for him. He looked towards my grandmother’s room and I walked ahead of him. He stayed behind and I felt this sense that he was waiting for other family members to come behind me.”
“This was the end of the dream. In the morning I woke up and went to the care center with my mother. As I walked through those same doors, Grandpa wasn’t sitting there waiting for me, but it did feel like he was watching and greeting us all, as we came to support the woman he had been so dedicated to taking care of.”
“A few days later I attended a yoga class. At the end of the class as I was preparing myself for my final meditation and I thought about my grandfather. I had felt at peace with our interaction in my dream and with his very expected death, but I was missing him a lot that day. I thought to myself, “are you still here grandpa?”
“As I started to drift into relaxation, I felt his presence in the room. It was a very warm and safe feeling having him there. While a child, he had been a strong male figure and a light in my life and I felt the warm love for him surround me. I could feel that he was kneeling above my head looking down on me. I felt a warm touch on my forehead followed by a hand on my heart. I began to tear up a little. Then I heard his voice. “It’s okay to heal”, he said. I took a deep breath and felt another stroke on my forehead. Then he was gone.”
“When he left, I felt a longing for him to stay with me, but I also felt a deep sense of peace. My grandfather was a minister and a man who had blessed many along his path. I believe he came to my class that day to bless me as well, and to let me know that he will always be with me, to give me strength whenever I need it.”
Commentary- Years earlier, when Crystal’s Grandpa died in open heart surgery, he asked God to allow him to stay to take care of his wife, and lived; making a full recovery. I’m convinced that personal will plays a big part in what we are able to achieve in life and death – which, in a broader spectrum, is still a part of life. Although he did not live to be 100 years old, he was dedicated to his faith and family in a remarkable and noble way. He would even, repeatedly come out of unconsciousness just to tell Grandma how much he loved her before fading out again.
As Crystal retired to sleep on the night of her Grandpa’s passing, she heard a loud sound, followed by bright lights. No doubt this was to get her attention and prepare her for something extraordinary to happen. After she got up and checked the door and house, she drifted off to sleep again and found herself in the perfect “twilight” brainwave to experience an after-death communication, existing between worlds.
When she entered the care center, this time in her dream, she was met by her Grandfather’s greeting. He was, not only clear-headed again, but… highly aware of her. He was also aware of his ability to stand up, walk and feel no pain. In his comfort and ease, it’s clear that Grandpa was aware, for he didn’t seem to find his new abilities unnatural or surprising. Obviously, this would have been shocking for Crystal to observe, considering he had, not only lost much of his memory through Dementia, but had lost the ability to stand – so much that he could no longer take care of himself and lived his last years of life, depressed and in a wheelchair.
Joyfully, Grandpa hugged and thanked Crystal for coming to see him. He was cognizant that she had made the trip to honor him and say a proper goodbye. Looking down the hall, he signaled Crystal to visit Grandma while she was there. Again, he was aware that Grandma was staying down the hall at the care center where he was. Her accident probably wasn’t really much of an accident as we know it, but a chance for Grandma and Grandpa to spend their last days together. And, although Grandpa did not follow Crystal down the hall to visit her Grandma, she got the definite impression that he was expecting visits from others, as well.
When Crystal and her mother physically went to the care center to see Grandma the next day, although Crystal did not see Grandpa there to greet her, she sure felt him and knew he was there – no doubt watching over Grandma.
A few days later, at Crystal’s yoga session, all she had to do was to think to herself, “Are you still here, Grandpa?” That was enough to get his attention, as he surrounded her with the comfort and love that he is so well remembered for. Crystal could feel his presence and exact location in the room – without questioning and doubting herself. Although missing her Grandpa, having and accepting this knowing gave Crystal a deep sense of comfort and peace. There is no doubt in her mind that her Grandpa will always be with her when she requires strength, as her Grandpa was a deep source of quiet strength.
But, perhaps the most important thing Grandpa was doing in that visit with Crystal, was offering her a blessing in the form of a reminder… “IT’S OKAY TO HEAL.”
With – whatever it is in life: the loss of a loved one, mistakes we’ve made along the way, mistakes that were made against us, OR being helplessly bobbed to and fro in the waves of a tumultuous life, sometimes we forget that, “IT”S OKAY TO HEAL.”
And perhaps… It’s long overdo.
Give yourself permission. “It’s okay to heal now.”