Holding Space

With Shelly Vaughn

Chimes

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One of the best things about having a Spring birthday is that I always feel inspired to run at some point in the day. This year, it was in the morning before the rain came. It was dreary and chilly, but I knew I wouldn’t be out long.

The destination for this run was to my mom’s memorial tree. It’s 2 miles from our house- the perfect
distance to get to anytime.

I’ve been to her tree dozens of times now. I think about her, talk to her, and feel close to her when I’m there. It’s usually very calming and peaceful.

Not sure why today was different, but as soon as I got there I just started crying. Then sobbing. I could barely even form a thought in my mind as I was trying to talk myself out of the emotions… I was just so sad. I kneeled down and put my head on the plaque with her name and let it out. It was embarrassing and gross, but apparently necessary.

Last year, my cousin left a wind chime on the tree and it’s beautiful. But it’s also kind of heavy, which means it would take a lot of wind to move the chime and make noise. In all the times I’ve been there in wind and rain and sun and breezes, I’ve never heard it chime.

You know where this is going…

As my head was down and I was a mess, I felt a very light breeze and heard the wind chime! Probably 10-12 little, high-pitched “ding-ding-dings”… then it stopped. I stopped to listen. Stopped crying. The breeze continued but the chimes didn’t move again.

That, friends, was my mom. A woman who always comforted me when she was on earth, now found a way to comfort me from heaven.

I wiped my tears, stood back up with a sense of genuine “okayness”, and finished my run for the morning.

I love mom so much that the pain of missing her is hard to allow myself to feel. But if I had not allowed myself to feel that painful moment, I would have missed feeling her presence, too.

Thank you for such a wonderful birthday gift, mom!

“don’t look away from the arms of a bad dream.

…don’t look away from the arms of a moment.

Don’t look away from the arms of love.”

– Green Day “The Forgotten”

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