Communicate with Loved Ones on The Other Side

‘Death ends a life, not a relationship.’ – Jack Lemmon

If you haven’t discerned by now, I want to be very clear. I believe… no, it’s much more than belief, I know that life continues after death.

The truth is that or me, the very meaning of the word death is a bit different than it may be for others. I think of death as a transition. A doorway if you will. Exiting life on planet Earth and entering life on The Other Side.

When we are grieving the loss of someone we love, we miss so many things! One of the most basic and deeply meaningful things that we miss is the ability to talk with them. To hear their voice, listen to their thoughts, have a conversation. It means so much.

The trouble is that while they are absolutely able to communicate with us, we are no longer speaking the same language. They no longer have a body, a voice box, and speech. When they reach out to us – and they will, it will be in a new way.

I’ve shared the experiences that we continue to have with receiving acorns. These little nuggets are very physical, showing up in the most unexpected places. There is no doubt in my mind that my son knew I would have difficulty acknowledging more subtle communication. I simply was not able in the beginning, the grief was too profound.

We often believe that if we ask for a specific sign that we will know it is our loved one. And that rocks when it happens! Still, that may not be the way your loved one is able to reach across the veil. And it’s entirely possible that you are not able to discern that communication at this point. It doesn’t mean they are not reaching out – it just means you are not connecting.

I want to encourage you to be open to possibilities. Notice aromas that make you think of the one you love. Recently while having a Reiki session, I became aware that both my biological father and step-father were communicating and it was all due to aroma. First, the very specific fragrance of the pipe tobacco Clarence smoked. The fragrance changed to be that of fresh wood shavings, which made me think of my dad, Art. There is no doubt in my mind or heart that this was ‘Hello, I love you.’ from both of them.

If you are asking for a white feather, please don’t dismiss noticing a picture of a feather on a package or even someone mentioning a painting of a feather. Perhaps you are asking to see a shape or light from your loved one, but so far it hasn’t happened. At the same time, you may notice that your pet is staring at a specific place, perhaps making sounds or acting playful. This may well be the one you love trying to connect with you.

This sort of communication is new to us, at least with this particular person. We each need to find our way and it may not look, sound or feel as we expect. Please be open to possibilities.

I think of it this way. If I expected one of my surviving sons to connect with me today, I’m most likely expecting a phone call. However, if they show up on my front doorstep, you bet I’m going to welcome them in. It may not be the communication that I expected, but it’s real. It’s wonderful. And it fills my heart with joy.

Talk to them. Sing to them. Invite them into your dreams. And if come to you in ways that you are not expecting, please, open the door. Let ’em in.

Namaste,
Sandy

Ear Flapping

DSC01051Duke is our foster dog. A big, sweet boxer he was adopted by our son Jeff and they set off to live happily together in Los Angeles. Alas, it wasn’t meant to be. Duke is simply not a hustle and bustle sort of guy. L.A. stressed him to bits, so Jeff made arrangements for him to go to Texas to live with our eldest son Bill and his lovely wife Felicia. Unfortunately, they are not able to welcome him into their home for a few months yet, so Duke has come to brighten up our lives for a few months. Sounded like a plan.

So, Duke arrived in Milwaukee to the absolute delight of our permanent resident boxer, Indy. They got along from day one and Duke has begun settling in. Then we started to really get to know him. While Duke is good-natured and sweet, communicating was something of a problem. He had no signal that it was time to go outside, he would just wait until one of us opened the door and follow us outside. Okay as far as it went, but we were worried that he was not having all of his needs met.

Then one morning, at the very silly time of around 5 am I heard this odd sound. It sounded as though someone was slapping a leather chamois, very, very quickly and it was happening right by my head. Huh? Well, I have gotten used to opening my eyes every morning to the sweet expression of Duke staring at me with his golden eyes. This morning he wasn’t staring at me. He was flipping his head from side to side with amazing speed and it was creating this very loud flapping sound. It actually made me laugh because it was so strange and loud. So I got out of bed. The moment my feet hit the floor, Duke took off at a run. He needed to go outside and he had just found the way to tell me! Good boy Duke!

Now I was tickled that Duke had learned to communicate this very basic need to me. My hope is that the Reiki he is getting every day, along with simply getting to know him better and encouraging his trust is helping him to feel confident expressing himself in new ways. At least new ways for him. The life coach in me is tickled beyond belief by this bit of progress. Communication can take time, it can be a tricky process and it’s one of the things that I work on with most life coaching clients on an ongoing basis.

The progress continues. Duke has now decided that ear flapping worked so well to signal the need to go outside first thing in the morning, it now also means that he is starving and needs food immediately, please. Okay, Duke, okay. I get it.

Duke only uses this signal first thing in the morning. He prefers around 5 am or so. I’m going to continue to coach him by responding to his request in a positive manner. Hopefully, as time goes on we will be able to understand each other at other times. There’s no doubt in my mind that Duke is communicating with me, telling me when he wants outside when he wants his ears scratched, etc. While I’m picking up some of these signals, I’m not understanding all of them, yet.

We’ll continue to work together, my new buddy Duke and me. He’s a very good student, watching Indy and our interaction all of the time. Clearly, he has his own style of communication and it’s my intention to understand him a bit better each day.

Really, this same event is unfolding in our lives on a regular basis. The dynamics of our relationships change and our way of communicating evolves. What worked yesterday may not work today. What works for one person may not work for another. I believe the key is continually keeping a positive attitude, making it clear that there is an intention to understand and communicate. Be aware of what our facial expression, body posture, and tone of voice are saying to our companions. These are all direct forms of communication and we are using them constantly.

As for me and Duke, I’m sort of hoping that he’ll decide he likes to sleep in, something around 5:30 or 6 would be swell. But at the moment, I’m not going to do anything to discourage our new understanding. He’s a sweet boy and I’m very happy that we are beginning to understand one another.

I wish you a fabulous day of clear communication with everyone in your life.

Namaste,
Sandy

Are you Connected?

My five favorite guys, good reasons for me to keep in contact.
My five favorite guys, good reasons for me to keep in contact.

Friends and family are important to me, so I try to send cards, make phone calls, and basically keep in touch. The truth is that sometimes I’m just not as good at it as I would like to be. Life gets busy, it’s just that simple. Now you are welcome to tell me that as a holistic life coach I should be aware of how very important these relationships are, and you would be right! I am aware, but I still get behind from time to time.

Enter the picture, the Internet. I was not at all sure when I started tooling around on the Internet that I would ever be comfortable, but it’s done so much for me. Email saved my sanity. When our eldest son, Bill, was deployed we had an easy way of communicating with him. Naturally he was not often able to catch up on his emails, but I had the ability to write a few lines or a short novel anytime I passed the computer, it was terrific. This absolutely did not replace cards and letters, but it allowed me to know that what I was saying him was instantly available to him when he had the opportunity to read it. The same story is true when our son Jeff travels, a great way to stay connected. At this point most of my family and friends at least check out their email once a week or so, I love that.

Facebook has entered my world more recently. Now I’ve got to admit I was a bit reluctant about the whole social page thing. I didn’t understand it, truly a few things about Facebook still confuse the daylights out of me, but I’m having fun with it. It’s given me a way to find some friends that I have not spoken with for a while, I can post pictures, send short messages and best of all find out what my family and friends are doing by just taking a quick peek. It’s awesome!

Now, I’m not suggesting that we abandon phone calls, greeting cards, and personal visits. All of these are amazing. What I am suggesting is that when things get busy and we find ourselves feeling a bit lonely or simply missing those we care about, the Internet offers another option. After all, my job as a life coach is to offer alternatives and suggestions, to find another way to approach the situation.

Wishing you a fabulous day connecting with family and friends.

Namaste,
Sandy

Subtle or Direct, What Works For You? Hint, Hint, The Life Coach Has a Suggestion

My eldest son recently married a wonderful young woman. While we were chatting one day she mentioned something about my son not always picking up subtle hints. I suggested giving up on the hints and taking a more direct approach, state exactly what she would like him to do. They are discovering so much about each other and realizing they each have slightly different ways of communicating. They’re working at figuring it out; I think they’ll be fine. That’s both the mom in me and the life coach speaking.

Since that little chat, I have given this a lot of thought. It’s occurred to me that a lot of aggravation and disappointment is caused by this simple type of misunderstanding. If she keeps dropping hints and he never acts on them, her feelings may be hurt and then she could very likely become angry because she thinks that he is simply being inconsiderate. From his point of view, he thinks all is well. After all, no one has informed him of anything different. Oh, maybe she’s feeling a bit grumpy, but he asked if anything was bothering her and she said no, so it must be that she needs a nap. Ugh… can you feeeeeeeel the frustration? 

Time for a bit of life coaching here. It’s really pretty basic and so simple that you already know what I’m going to say, I’m sure of it.

They need to have a little talk about communication styles. It needs to be out loud, in actual words, face to face and preferably with smiles on their faces. She probably needs to bite the bullet and simply be more direct with him. For example, instead of piling all of his dirty socks on top of his favorite baseball cap, thinking this will convince him to put them in the clothes hamper, she probably needs to ask him to put them in the hamper. For his part, he needs to make an actual effort to communicate clearly as well and also when he is really not clear about what are probably hints ask! Again with a smile. Think of how much aggravation will be avoided.

I found that when my boys grew up and moved away from home I missed them. Who knew? While I had told them I would appreciate hearing from them often the truth is that their idea of often and mine were incredibly different. I found myself missing them and wanting to hear from them more frequently.

There had to be a remedy, and I had a pretty good idea on just how I would prefer to fix this situation. My solution was to phone and leave a message, telling whichever boy I was contacting that I need to hear him tell me how much he loved, adored and missed me and that when he had done this I wouldn’t call them for another week or so. Within a day or two, I would get a call from a smiling boy (you can always hear the smile over the phone) and he would tell me just what I needed to hear. I do the same thing with my husband. If I am feeling a bit neglected, I simply ask him to tell me that he loves me, how fabulous he thinks I am and how lucky we are to be together. He will smile and repeat everything that I have asked him to say, what a great guy! I’m happy because I know he means it, he’s happy because he knows that he’s given me exactly what I needed at the moment. We’re both feeling happy and no one is feeling neglected or misunderstood. That’s definitely a win/win.

My point here is that as nice as it would be for us to communicate through hints and clues, for many of us it simply is not all that effective. In this day of very busy lives, we often don’t have the luxury of face to face communication. In the past we did have that luxury and so much of our communication was body language, hints and subtleties were much more easily understood. Since we now rely on phone calls, emails and quick little chats with one another, we need to be sure that we are easily understood. When we speak calmly, clearly and directly we are much more likely to have our needs and desires understood and that makes it much more likely they will be met.

Please clearly understand, I wish you a fabulous day,

Namaste,
Sandy