A Sense of Spirit · concepts · making contact · signs from spirits

The Car with Spirit

My father loved vehicles of any description throughout his entire life. It didn’t matter to him whether they travelled by road, rail, water or air, or if they were old, new, or what model they were, he showed an interest in them all. If it had a motor, he wanted to know about it.

When Dad was gone, it was left to me and my three sisters to dispose of all of his worldly belongings and as the one who lived only ten minutes from his home, I became the designated seller of his car.

Naively, I thought it would be easy to sell a car, just place an advert in the local paper and it would ‘walk out the door’.

How wrong I was! As time went on, it appeared that Dad had his own plans regarding the disposal of his final vehicle.

After what seemed like forever, a neighbour bought the car for his daughter, a learner driver. He would fix up the car for her and it would be a great “first car”.

I had considered buying my sister’s shares in the car and keeping it for my eldest son, who would be learning to drive soon himself, but decided against that idea, as the car would have sat idle in our yard, no doubt deteriorating due to lack of use, for the next two years, until my son would be old enough to drive.

When the time came for my son to buy his first car I gave him “the motherly talk”, the one that goes, “don’t spend too much, but buy a decent car, but if you pay too little you will only be buying someone else’s problems; no car is worth wasting any amount of money on if it is too cheap, you never know where it has been, who has owned it or how it has been treated,” etc. etc……..

But Dad had plans of his own. He knew just the car that his grandson wouldn’t have to pay too much for, and we knew exactly where it had been – his car.

The time had also come for our neighbour’s daughter to upgrade her car. Dad’s car came back on the market at exactly the right time.

It felt “right” when my Dad’s car was driven back into our own driveway. My son had to go to work for a few hours that day, (he had a casual job on the weekends as he was still a student at school) and the car would be waiting for him when he arrived home.

My husband and I decided to get a head start for our son by vacuuming out the car, although we found that the back door on the passenger side wouldn’t open. We knew that the door had opened when we had the car before but now the door appeared to be locked, even though it wasn’t.

When my son arrived home we mentioned the problem with the door. What we hadn’t realised was that our son had opened all the doors of the car (part of his “new car” inspection!) before he left for work that day.

My boy walked up to the car and opened the “locked” door, with ease!

At that moment, I knew that my father had intended his car to go to my son.

For the next two years, Dad’s car didn’t miss a beat. My son finished school and started his first full time job immediately. He already had a decent deposit saved, ready to upgrade to a newer car, and within three weeks of starting work full time he decided to start looking around for his new car.

My boy had a very clear image of the car he wanted; red, fairly new and manual gear.

Again, I gave him the “mother talk”; “don’t fall in love with the first car you see; don’t let those used car salesmen talk you into anything; don’t expect to find your dream car immediately, it could take months of searching”, etc. etc…….

Within less than an hour, he called me on the phone. “Mum, I’ve found my car!”

“What did I tell you?” I groaned.

He immediately interrupted me. “I know, but I’ve found a red Holden, a manual, just over a year old, way below market price and still under new car warranty. I’ve already been approved for finance, so long as you will put your name on the loan with me.”

What could I say? My boy was right. I also knew that my Dad had again guided his grandson to this car, just as he had with his own old car. Dad was a “Holden Man”; my son had found a Holden. The car was red; Dad’s favourite colour (and also, luckily, my son’s!) The new car was a manual, my son’s preferred choice, although very rare in this model of car. My Dad would drive nothing other than a manual.

But the story doesn’t end there.

Dad’s car would be traded in on the new car, so the day my boy was to collect the car, he drove home after work, allowing plenty of time to remove his personal belongings from Dad’s car. He took his little brother with him, telling me he still had a fair amount of petrol in the car and would take my younger son for a final drive in his old car.

I was at work that day, but would be arriving home before my boy would be leaving to collect his new red car.

Shortly after, my son phoned me; he had crashed the old car! He assured me that neither of them had been injured, even though I could hear my younger son, he was only six at the time, crying in the background.

With my heart where my stomach had been, and my stomach now located in my throat, I went to rescue my two boys, somewhere on a gravel road which ran alongside the river, a road that we could see in the distance from the back of our home.

When I reached the scene of the accident, it was difficult to imagine what had happened, with both of my son’s waiting beside the car, not far from the side of a straight stretch in the road. The car was parked slightly in a sugarcane field and at first glance appeared to have no damage to it.

My eldest son was angry with himself, saying he must have been speeding and hit a pot-hole in the road. When I looked along the road, there was not a pot-hole in sight. The car had flipped over and righted itself in the sugarcane field.

Once my stomach and heart had relocated themselves back into their correct positions, we were able to calmly drive my two boys and Dad’s old car, now sporting a broken windscreen, home.

Later that night, as my son reflected on the day’s events and we all puzzled over how the car had flipped over on a straight stretch of road, without pot-holes, my son told me something that he felt was strange about the accident and had been playing on his mind.

Although at first he had though the car must have gained speed, he had later remembered having slowed down to point out to his little brother where our house was, in amongst the trees and up in the hills. We could see the road and river from our home; we could also see our home from the road.

The road running alongside the river was, and still is, a very quiet road. My son remembered slowing down considerably, as there was no other traffic in site, to point out where our house was.

He also remembered feeling something happening to the car. He knew instinctively that there was something amiss, and had time to put his arm around his little brother for protection, before the car had time to flip over.

The whole incident had happened, as he described it, “in slow motion”.

Now, I never spoke to my son about my belief in the spirit world, as he had only been a boy of eight years of age when my mother had left us. He had told me at that time that he was afraid that his grandma might appear to him and it would frighten him, so I assured him that his grandmother wouldn’t do any such thing, as she would know he was afraid and wouldn’t wish to scare him, but the day the car flipped, he had his own theories about the accident, which he shared with me.

My son told me that he believed his grandfather had given him a “driving lesson” as such, showing him how quickly and unexpectedly an accident could happen if he didn’t keep his wits about him. He told me that the whole incident had been “other worldly” and he had been trying to find a logical reason why it had happened, knowing full well that he hadn’t been speeding. He also believed that his grandfather had protected both himself and his little brother during the “lesson”.

Dad’s car eventually became scrap metal. Dad didn’t want anyone else to own his car. He had left his car, in his own way, to my son, and he’d arranged every incident in such a way that his wishes would be fulfilled.

A co-incidence of events? I don’t believe that for a minute!

Wherever you are, Dad, your grandson thanks you for leaving him your car. 🙂

A Sense of Spirit · making contact · realities · signs from spirits · sisters · unbreakable bonds

Are Tarot Cards Really Necessary?

During the final few weeks of my mother’s time on this earth, spent in hospital, with my father and eldest sister constantly at her bedside, I didn’t have the opportunity to speak to her, to ask the questions I wished to ask or to discuss matters with her that only she would understand.

Mum tried to tell me things but with Dad and my sister as an audience, I know I didn’t react to what she told me in the same way as I would have, if we were alone.

If I cried when I visited my mother, Dad asked me not to let Mum see how upset I was, as it may upset her to see me that way. I had wanted to cry over the impending loss of my mother; I didn’t want her to think I had become so hardened to her illness than I no longer felt emotion, but Dad was of the “old school”, believing Mum must be protected from adverse emotion in her delicate state.

I don’t blame my father for feeling that way. I know that he believed it was for the best.

I didn’t.

The relationship I had with my mother had been one of trust and open honesty for all of my life. Mum and I had raging arguments at times, due to our honesty with each other, but neither of us ever held a grudge. As soon as we were through with our argument, Mum would say, “Go and put the kettle on and make us a cup of tea”. A cup of tea made everything right, you know. Mum was an English lady, who knew within her heart and soul that a shared cup of tea would fix anything that ailed her world.

And it did.

For the two of us it did, anyway, although none of my sisters seemed to have the same capacity to get over a row with Mum in the same way as I did. I still believe the relationship that Mum and I shared was unique on so many levels.

My mother has been gone since 1993 and back then I had one child at school, one at pre-school and my baby who was only nine months old, a baby who my mother had said was “her baby”.

I dropped my two elder children off at school one morning and on the spur of the moment decided to call in and see Mum at the hospital in the morning, rather than waiting until the afternoon when I would be collecting the older two from school, as I had planned.

My baby and I walked into Mum’s hospital room and instead of seeing my father and sister at her side, I found my Mum alone, lying peacefully in bed in the coma she had been in for the last couple of days.

Without giving my actions a second thought, I walked over to my Mum’s bedside and began talking to her by telling her I was visiting her with my baby and that Dad and my sister hadn’t arrived yet. I chatted away to her for a while, in the same way that I would have spoken to her had she been conscious.

It would have been amazing to hear her voice again, but it knew that wouldn’t happen ever again. I stroked her smooth face and her silver hair. I looked at her hands, her strong, healing hands, trying with all my might to embed the image of my beautiful mother permanently within my mind’s eye.

Before I left the room I told her something that I had wanted to say to her when she was still conscious. I told my mother that I knew she would want to contact me from the other side and if she felt the need to contact me for any reason, to let me know and I would find a psychic, or tarot card reader, to help her get through to me.

Mum and I had often made visits to such people, with Mum telling me that she wished she had the same ability that they did. Mum said she wasn’t afraid of psychic phenomena, and I shared her beliefs. They came as naturally to me as breathing, most likely due mostly to my mother sharing her beliefs with me for my entire life.

Up until this particular day, before leaving the hospital, I had said to my Mum, “See you later Mum. I love you”, not having the strength to say goodbye. I hadn’t wanted to say the final goodbye to this precious person who meant the world to me.

This morning had been different though. Mum and I had spent time together, alone, time to communicate.

Time for me to realise that I had to let her go.

She rested so peacefully and I indulged my eyes for the last few moments, again memorising every minute detail about her.

I noticed a pulse beating slowly at the side of her neck. Ah, so she was still alive, I thought to myself, although her spirit seemed not to be with the body I looked at lying in the hospital bed.

Leaning over my mother I whispered to her, “Goodbye Mum. I love you”, and left the room.

Later in the day I found out that a nurse had watched me leave the room and went in to check on my mother.

She was gone.

Down in the hospital car park I strapped my baby into her car seat and turned on the ignition.  On the radio that morning they were playing hit songs of 1975 and the song that came onto the radio was “All by Myself” by Eric Carmen, one of Mum’s favourite songs and one which she felt had been written just for her.

“All by myself,
Don’t wanna be, all by myself anymore.”

The years passed and I waited for some kind of sign from my mother, but there wasn’t one. I couldn’t understand why she wasn’t, or couldn’t, get through to me. In life, we had talked constantly and I believed with every fibre of my being that Mum hadn’t left me, that she was beside me always.

So where was the sign to contact the psychic? I’d been waiting, and looking, and there was nothing!

This lack of contact began to play on my mind and I thought back over the last couple of years to anything that may have lead to a sign that I may have missed, but every incident that I recalled had gone nowhere; every question I had come up with had been answered, every problem I had, had been solved.

The contact had been right there in front of me, the whole time! Mum had been helping me through every day, without me realising it!

Perhaps grief had shut my senses down; I’m not sure what had happened to me. All I do know is that once I opened my heart and listened with my soul, she could speak to me.

The tarot cards and the psychics are not needed to bring my mother and me together. There is an invisible golden thread joining us together, which can never be broken. She will never leave me, nor I her. She knows she can release the thread more these days as I don’t rely on her as much as I used to, but she knows when I need her. And she is there.

Photo credit ~ Dreamstime.com

A Sense of Spirit · making contact · signs from spirits · unbreakable bonds

Finding Uncle Albert

Uncle Albert in England, 1917.

During my entire adult life, researching family history has been a hobby, perhaps even an obsession of mine. Even as a child I would constantly ask my parents to tell me what they knew about their families, to tell me any stories they remembered, and what were the names of our ancestors.

Unfortunately they didn’t have much for me in the way of detail, although I hung onto every snippet of information they had, however remote it may have been, etching the names and events into my memory so as not to forget a single detail.

It also helped that my family obligingly repeated said stories, ad nauseam, every single time I asked them to. “I’ve already told you that story”, they would protest, by which time I would be jumping up and down, pleading, “I know, but tell me again. I might have missed something”. I must have been the most annoying child what with my inquisitive mind, and my family must have loved me a great deal to tolerate me, repeating the old stories upon request.

I always referred to the family stories as the “England Stories”, as my entire family came from England, with yours truly being the token Australian back in those days. My father in particular remembered uncle-this-aunty-that-and-cousin-someone-else, although he didn’t have the foggiest idea as to how they were related to him!

It wasn’t until about 2003 that I finally discovered that the internet was THEE place to research my family history.

Armed with just the names of my parents and grandparents, my family tree has since grown to seven-hundred-and-seventy-three family members, a fact which both of my parents would be astounded by, if they were both still here for me to tell them!

The relations that I have focused mostly on throughout my research have been those who are the closest to me, such as great aunties and uncles and my direct line of grandparents (I know who my own aunties and uncles were).

In among some old photos of nameless relatives given to me by my father, (passed on to him by his mother, who hadn’t a clue of who any of them were either!) there was one photo that stood out for me. A man, wearing an army uniform, posing among his civilian dressed family, had a familiar face. He reminded me of my father’s first cousin, who I called Uncle Jim.

I was determined to learn exactly who this man was. The inscription on the back of the photo, written in pencil, is “Albert’s ten days leave, January, 1917”. The photo was taken by a photographer in Manchester, England.

My research revealed that the man in the photo was my father’s Uncle Albert, although I could find nothing of his army record, nor any marriage or births of children.

During one of my moments of scrutinising the old family photo, the penny dropped; Uncle Albert was wearing an Australian army uniform!

Ultimately, with my research now focused on Australian records, I discovered that Uncle Albert had emigrated to Australia as a teenage and had joined the Australian army in 1916 during the First World War. The family photo was taken whilst he had leave during his time in the Australian army in England. Uncle Albert returned to Australia after the war ended in 1919, later marrying and spending most of his years living in Sydney.

But I still had questions; did Uncle Albert have any children? How long had he lived?

Through various ways in which I have discovered information can be found in the NSW Births, Deaths and Marriage online register, with next to no information on the ancestor being researched, I discovered that Uncle Albert had lived until 1951, and he was buried at MacLean, NSW.

MacLean! Just three hours drive from my home!

Last year, after yet another online search which gave me the name of the cemetery where Uncle Albert was buried, I headed off to MacLean with my then thirteen year old son.

MacLean is a small town, so we had no trouble finding the cemetery at all, although we hadn’t counted on meeting up with thousands of bats, living in the trees, which lined the back of the cemetery. It turned out that the bats were the only living creatures we clapped eyes on during our visit in MacLean. The noise of the screeching bats really rattled my son’s confidence; well the bats, along with the fact that his crazy mother was thrilled to bits at having the opportunity of finding the grave of some old dead guy that he didn’t know!

The trees at the cemetery were full of screeching bats!

We wandered around the cemetery for quite some time, reading headstones, minds boggling at some of the extremely young, and extremely old, who had been laid to rest here. But no Uncle Albert.

My son was beginning to get restless; he’d had enough of the bats and was spooked over spending so much time in a cemetery. To be truthful, I’d grown quite weary myself. Where was Uncle Albert?

In a moment of frustration, I spoke out loud, “Where are you Uncle Albert?”

A loud cracking noise came from a section of the cemetery just ahead of us. In a flurry of shock, my son announced, “I’m getting out of here”, as I told him “Uncle Albert’s over there”, and I headed directly towards the noise.

Uncle Albert's Grave

Sure enough, there he was, right where the noise had come from. My son only came close enough to me for me to throw him the car keys, which suited me just fine. It allowed me the time to enjoy a private visit with my great-uncle, a man I had searched for, for many years.

At the bottom of Uncle Albert’s grave there was one single word engraved – “Father”. So, he did have a child, or children!

One simple word ~ "FATHER".

Shortly after I returned home I made contact with Uncle Albert’s grandson, through a family research website which we are both members of.

Time means nothing at all in the spirit world. Uncle Albert had been gone for sixty years, yet he still managed to find a way for me to find him. That is an important lesson I have learned ~ keep yourself open to the subtle signs, sent to us when our loved ones are trying to contact us.

We could pass the signs off as ‘coincidence’ or we can heed the signs and open ourselves up to the messages that are too good to miss, which for me was finding Uncle Albert.