Messages from Big Jim
A Celebration of Life
Written October 31, 2006
My dad's birth certificate listed his
name as James Joseph, but everyone called him Jimmy Joe or just Jim.
Now my Protector Guide, Chief Running Bear, calls him Big Jim.
Daddy transitioned home on October 31,
2005. You may read more about his transition here:
Daddy on his old Harley Davidson
Today is a year since Daddy crossed
over... This morning when I woke up I began to think about him and
all the "connections" and messages that I've received in the past year
to let me know that he is, indeed, still here. These are but a
Daddy and Spiders
Daddy farmed land that he and his father cleared for crops. Of
course living on a farm opens the door to critters - critters of every
size shape and form. So Daddy was my hero - my spider killer.
Whenever there was a shriek he knew I found another one and he would
come kill it. Ever seen a HUGE wolf spider? They can get so
big they will smell if you don't remove the dead body - I've seen
shampoo bottles bounce off of them in the bathtub - I even had one that
was so big it couldn't get under the piano! They will creep you out!
The morning after Daddy's transition I
had an angel reading to do. I knew he was around because earlier
when I got dressed, I clearly hear him laughingly say, "you've put on
weight!" He always did say what he was thinking...
I was almost finished with the angel
reading when a not tiny, but small, spider crawled out of my keyboard!
My office is on the top floor of my home - in the past four years I had
seen three spiders in there and they were in the window - not on my desk
- NOT in my keyboard!
Note: Spiders are not allowed in my
home. They're told if they come in the house, they will be killed.
If an Orkin salesman comes to the door, they won't believe you, but this
Back to the story: I'm thinking, Oh
My God, I'm doing an angel reading, I can't "KILL" it! Then I
heard my dad laughing - totally cracking up. I said, out loud,
"this isn't funny!" Clearly I heard him say, "yes, it is!" I
responded with, "but now he's got to die." Daddy defended himself
with, "it was his idea."
Yeah, right, like the spider decided it
was a good time to crawl out of a keyboard that I had been using for
forty-five minutes. Clearly he was deaf from the clacking in
there... The spider may have survived - I never saw him again.
I unceremoniously placed him in the trash can...
I see spiders at the oddest times -
that's how I know they come from Daddy. I've walked into the
garage and a spider has been hanging from a web at eye level and I can
still see it in the semi darkness. Hi Daddy!
Years ago I gave Daddy the book, All I
Ever Needed to Know I Learned in Kindergarten by Robert Fulgham.
One of his favorite stories in the book is about the lady who walks into
a spider web on the porch while on her way to work. She looses it
there on the step, waving her arms around and screaming. She ends
up going back into the house and showering. It reminded him of me.
The best spider delivery couldn't have
been more perfect. Daddy dropped in an apport - a gift from
My teenage daughter and I were having
an... angry difference of opinion. She was sitting on the sofa and
I was sitting in the chair in the living room. She had just combed
out her wet hair after a shower. As we heatedly discussed our
difference of opinion, I saw something that looked "HUGE" moving in her
freshly washed hair. I pulled her off the sofa and tried to get
the spider out of her long wet hair. Jesse isn't a spider fan
either so she was totally freaked out. When the spider finally let
go of her hair and dropped to the carpet, he was a little guy - a
little bitty guy! A spider specimen I had seen growing up, but
never in Colorado. In the aftermath of the spider incident,
Jesse and I were both crying and were able to work out our difference of
opinion. Oh yes, the spider had to die.
Daddy in Spirit with his newer Harley Davidson
|This is the bike Big Jim enjoyed
all weekend before he transitioned. I took this picture and several others
the day of the funeral. At first I thought something was
on the lens of the camera - there is a white haze at the rear of
the bike. Then I noticed that they were only in the
pictures I took of the bike and... the haze moved in each
joined us in taking family photos of the bike. The only
retouching done to this image is at the front where I took out
family members - and of course I cropped it so it would fit
Daddy and Trips out of Town
Living in Colorado is absolutely awesome. Not only is the
state beautiful, but if you don't like the weather, wait five minutes
and it will change. With so much to see here, we travel around
"looking" as often as we can. On the drive home after one of our
excursions, Fred, my companion, and I were talking about my dad.
As if on cue, I saw a candy apple red Harley whiz around us - it was my
dad! In passing us, he lifted his right hand in a salute/waive.
Those of you who ride motorcycles know the throttle is on the right.
Instead of slowing down, he sped up! Plus we all know how loud a
Harley is - there was no noise. Quickly I looked at Fred - he
didn't see it. In a flash, Daddy was out of sight. I just
smiled all the way home...
On Father's Day this year, I couldn't get a card for Fred.
Couldn't even walk down the card isle. He didn't care, but I did.
In the afternoon we enjoyed our backyard. Fred was lying in his
hammock and I was sitting in a chair beside him talking to him when
something out of the corner of my right eye caught my attention.
My dad was riding across the yard toward us - FAST. He smoothly
braked at the end of the hammock and revved the engine. Alvin, the
skunk, was on his shoulder and Snuggles, the dog, was on the back.
He had the biggest smile on his face. Seems like every time I see
him or hear him he's laughing and smiling. (Guess I would be too
if I were on the other side!) He saluted. Then he leaned the
Harley over, spun out and zipped away - without destroying my yard.
What a wonderful Father's Day gift for ME!
I wasn't thinking about him... but he
was thinking about me...
One day as I was putting away laundry in my bedroom I ran right into
my dad. I was walking out of the bathroom area and there he was -
doing donuts on his Harley in the middle of my bedroom! Majik was
sitting on the bed watching him. I hadn't even been thinking of
him - but clearly he was thinking of me!
I shared the experience with Fred when he
got home. He reminded me he doesn't want any "dead people" in our
bedroom. I told him he wasn't home!
A Musical Connection
Big Jim communicates with my mom
through songs. Daddy used to whistle - and he was good at
it. While visiting my mom, I noticed that she whistles.
She said that songs will just get stuck in her head and she
finds herself singing, humming or whistling them.
asked her to think about the songs, are they songs that Daddy
liked? She thought about it and agreed, yes, they are.
Then she told me that sometimes songs wake her up in the
morning. I laughed and asked what song? The answer
was, "Wake Up Little Suzie" by The Everly Brothers. My
mom's name is Sue...
These are but a few experiences since
Daddy transitioned. I know now, more than ever that he really
hasn't gone anywhere. He whooshes through here on his bike
checking on things. He's around when there are silly disagreements
and he has things to say about them - fortunately I'm the only one who
hears him. Majik plays with Alvin, the skunk, but Snuggles, his
dog, thinks Majik is annoying.
It's only been a year, so the physical
world side of grieving is still there. Even though we know that
our loved ones are OK - that they are safe and with God, we still must
grieve. We've been conditioned by the physical world that death is
bad and that conditioning is deep. If you've lost a loved one and
"know" that they are ok so you don't feel you should be grieving, think
again. The physical world side of you does need to grieve.
Allow yourself to. Then celebrate their life and rejoice that they
are ok and still with us.
Thank you for sharing with me the
celebration of my dad.
May you be profoundly blessed in this
moment and in every moment after...
In love and light,