Sometimes, things happen for which there is no explanation, and only on looking back on the event, can you understand its significance. That happened recently to my sister, a little over a month before the suicide of her youngest child.
On Mother’s Day, my sister’s family had gathered at her home. My sister looked out over the lake by which her house sits, and suddenly noticed a cloud formation in the shape of an angel. It was a very large and beautiful figure of an angel. For some reason, she instantly thought of our Mom and felt the angel was a message from her, on this special day for all mothers. Later in the day, she picked up her phone and looked at the picture she had taken of the angel. Unknown to her at the time, she had caught her son Tadrik in the picture, sitting under the wing of the angel. At the time, she thought “How beautiful – my mom is looking out for my son”. Then life got busy, and she didn’t think about the picture again for a little over a month.
During the last week of June, Tadrik took his life. After the initial shock of this dreadful news, my sister remembered the picture. She thought that perhaps she had misread the message and that our Mom was not only looking after Tadrik, but preparing to guide him home. Perhaps the angel in the picture was wrapping her arms around Tadrik, knowing what the near future was about to bring. It might have been trying to tell us that Tadrik’s time with us was nearing its end.
My sister had her picture framed and it sat on Tadrik’s casket.
You may think these are thoughts of a grieving family and that we are reading too much into it. However, something else happened that, upon reflection, validated our interpretation.
Two of my nieces and I were standing with my sister at the cemetery. At the heart-wrenching moment when Tadrik’s coffin was being lowered into the ground, I saw my niece whisper something to my sister. Later my niece took me aside and repeated what she had whispered. As the casket began its descent into the ground, my niece looked up at the sky. Unbelievably, she saw a huge cloud formation in the shape of a perfect angel. Knowing the story of the picture my sister had taken on Mother’s Day, my niece wanted my sister to see this angel too.
Was this a second message that Tadrik was being taken care of, perhaps by his grandparents who have him under their wings, just as Tadrik was sitting under the wing of the cloud angel in that Mother’s Day photo? I choose to believe our family was indeed delivered two messages and know that it brings Tadrik’s family great comfort.