Vigil
Labor Pains

“In heaven an angel is nobody in particular.”
George Bernard Shaw

That’s the quote I posted with this picture on Instagram three years ago.

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I’d taken it off the pier in San Clemente and had marveled at its beauty, even though it was a common pigeon. The quote made a lot of sense to me too.

Last night, in a fevered fifteen minutes with Vernon, when he had woken in implacable agitation, he spoke of seeing ‘the Man of Light’ as he had often called Him. Now he could only answer in yes and no, but I got the gist. He had seen Him in the hospital over two weeks ago, before anyone even mentioned he’d run out of earthly options. He had said He was inviting him but he didn’t want to go. Since then, I’ve asked Vernon a few times if he’d seen Jesus again. He always said no, sometimes even angrily—or hurt that I would ask such a question. But last night he said he saw Him again…and though he implied the man of light was beckoning, Vernon still didn’t want to go. He couldn’t let go of life. I know he doesn’t want to leave me or his family. No matter how out of it he is, no matter how painful living has become. I’m trying to find the words to help him let go. There is a lot of reassuring going on.

But my friend Nicole was with me in the room. We both really thought the passage would happen for an intense session there. She told me I should ask him for a sign, something to communicate with me when he’s gone.  I’ve had other friends suggest doing the same thing when the time is right. So I grabbed the moment. At least he was awake. I asked for a sign: an animal, a bird?

“Pigeon,” he murmured.

“What about an eagle, a hawk?” (Those are birds that held so much significance for him in his lifetime. And they are so much more powerful. I believe Maki has already connected this symbol with him through a few recent experiences.)

“Pigeon,” he said again.

Nicole urged me to ask more. What color?

“Common.”

Nicole and I started giggling. What a funny concept. A pigeon, of all things! Ok, a pigeon it is.

It’s so Vernon to pull up something so simultaneously odd and ordinary. He always cuts right through, doesn’t he? Even in his last will and testament.

There are lots of messages to be taken from this. You can be assured I’ve already looked up some of them online (Among other things, they represent home and security, as well as determination to get through difficult circumstances. They are also considered to be spirit messengers by many cultures. They are thought to bring love, peace and an understanding of gentleness.) But what I immediately took from it, was that they are common. They are everywhere. If Vernon is going to chose a messenger of his love for me, he’ll chose something I’m bound to see all often, wherever I may go. What a brilliant man. How can I ever forget him?

 

 

 

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Vigil
Labor Pains