A Sign from Beyond


It was 2008.... I just got the call that my mother was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer and had one year to live.

Without hesitation I quit my $500 a day job and drove 2000 miles a month to look after her at home. The trip is another story in itself as it was -64c at the oil rig I was working on and 47 kilometers off the highway on an occasionally plowed road in the of dead winter. I drove this in a sports car. One time I had a tire that was completely flat which when I added air to it, I had to cross my fingers I'd make the 150 miles to the airport. When I got there, it was completely flat once again.

I made this trip every other month for the next year. 

Anyway...my mom and I were not that close.  I was the black sheep of the family and we did not see eye to eye. That year was the worst I could possibly imagine.  I cried every day. I prayed every night that she would pass away in her sleep, not because I wanted her to die, but because I wanted her suffering to end.

During that time we did sort out a few issues, but on the whole, I retained a terrible guilt for not living up to her expectations. On one lucid night, I made her promise to send me a sign when she passed. She wasn't sure what to believe in, but to shut me up, she promised she would. Half the time she just thought I was nuts for thinking the way I do about life.

It was on a day that was almost exactly a year since she was diagnosed, her heart gave out as I was helping her walk from the chair to bed. It wasn't like the movies. There was nothing calm and serene.  It was freaking horrible. I was devastated that I couldn't help her suffering.

That night I went back to her home to tell my dad. As I was walking down the hall towards the bedroom, I could hear music -tinny tunes like in a Christmas card. However, the closer I got to her bedroom, the farther away the sound.  First it was in the closet then the other side of the room and then it was all around me....and then gone... just like that! 

I tore that room apart looking for a card. For anything.

I laid down on my bed and looked at my silent, dark laptop sitting there, unplugged. I got the bright idea to ask my mom to turn it on if she was there with me. No word of a lie...my laptop booted up within thirty seconds of me finishing that sentence. The only way I could turn it off again was to take the battery out.

Of course I was flabbergasted! I called my son and started blabbering about Grandma turning the laptop on. His only calm reply was, "Mom, it couldn't possibly be grandma.  She couldn't even turn it on when she was alive!"

Since then I've had many signs and messages from my mom.  I still have moments of guilt and depression, but whenever I have those moments that's when she comes through with a sign that says she's still here and loves me.  One of those signs came in the form of a child's book left on my table, called, "Love You Forever."

-Trish Coal