On a mild October evening I plodded along the cobblestone streets of New Hope, Pennsylvania. I noticed the local ghost tour making its rounds in the historic and very haunted village. Reluctantly, I headed toward Farley’s Bookshop where for the next two hours I would sign my book, Haunted New Hope, and absent-mindedly listen to readers share their ghost stories. Normally an enjoyable event, my feelings ranged from numbness to extreme heartache.
My mother, Liv, had passed away and I endured the most awful, gut-wrenching emotional pain I ever experienced. Now that she was gone, I also suffered from a lack of purpose. In my loneliness and sorrow, I felt like I was the walking dead.
Ducking into one of the shops to kill more time, my eyes were drawn to a square purple magnet imprinted with the following proverb: “Just when the caterpillar thought the world was over, it became a butterfly.” That’s exactly how I felt—I thought my life was over. Yet this quote inspired a ray of hope.
I believe in the supernatural. I’ve collected ghost stories ever since I was a kid. I’ve witnessed apparitions which motivated me to chronicle true ghost stories in five states. I’ve appeared on radio and television to share my experiences and also consulted with television producers regarding ghostly phenomena. Never did I think that I would one day write about post-mortem visits from my mother. In fact, I didn’t think I would ever pen another word that’s how disheartened I’d become. My mother played an active role in my regional ghost book publishing venture. Actually, as she lay dying I implored Liv not to haunt me! I was only joking, even though it occurred to me she might.
For years I’ve enjoyed my mother’s after death communications. Liv’s continued presence in my life is a transformational gift for which I am eternally grateful. Array of Hope, An Afterlife Journal presents the many ways my late mother communicated comfort and consolation. Most of the contact with my mother is telepathic—I hear Liv’s voice in my mind. Liv’s positive and uplifting words helped me to cope with her loss. Hearing her telepathically soothed my grief, accelerated my healing and spurred me on spiritually. Liv’s afterlife communications impelled me to confront my deepest questions about mortality and the soul’s survival.
Exactly one week after my mother passed away, I concentrated on clearing out my parents’ house since my father, Edmund, passed 77 days earlier. Their neighbor Sharon stopped by to help. While keenly aware that my mother’s hour of death, 2:35 P.M., approached, strains of a Simon & Garfunkel CD filled the nearly empty house.
The house stood vacant for over six months, so when the phone rang, it startled me. Who could possibly be calling? Suddenly the atmosphere took on an ethereal quality; events seemed to transpire in slow motion. I heard Simon & Garfunkel singing Old Friends. I walked toward the den to answer the telephone.
“Hello? Hello?” No answer. I again became aware of Simon & Garfunkel singing, “Time it was, and what a time it was, it was…” It was 2:35 P.M.! The exact time of my mother’s passing one week ago!
I asked Sharon how many times the phone rang. “Two.”
I dropped onto the couch and allowed a torrent of tears.
The precise timing of the call is extraordinary, along with the “coincidence” of the evocative song lyrics, and the number of rings. My mother didn’t always like to answer her phone so we developed a “code” so she would know it was me who was calling—ring twice, hang up, and then call back. Furthermore, I had included those same lyrics from Old Friends on the last page of Haunted New Hope as a tribute to my mother.
Jean Fellacher, a psychic from Queens, New York phoned me on the one-year anniversary of my mother’s passing to order a copy of Haunted Long Island. Usually people don’t call me at home to order books. I could hardly believe I held a connection with a psychic on this poignant anniversary. I don’t believe in coincidences; everything happens for a reason.
“You wear very little make-up. You’re very natural.”As soon as I heard this statement, I knew my mother’s involvement. Liv always complained I didn’t use make-up even as I wore it!
“There’s a woman on the Other Side. She’s short. Not too thin but yet not heavy. She has curly hair.” (My poor mother slept on curlers practically every night of her life!). Jean laughs and says “This is a very happy spirit. She’s so happy.” I cry. “She says you were her rock.”That did it. Now I’m certain Jean is communicating with my mother. Liv always called me her “rock.”
In a subsequent telepathic communication with my mom the next day she said she “planned” the psychic connection. Liv connected with me through another astonishing event which occurred shortly after her passing. As I climbed the steps to my parents’ empty house I felt my mother’s hand on my hip. Liv habitually supported herself in this way as she climbed the stairs. I spun around fully expecting to see her, the sensation felt so real! Their next door neighbor, Sharon, saw me grab my back and thought I injured myself. This time I tangibly felt Liv’s touch and viscerally reacted to it.
Twenty months after my mother’s passing, my friend Ellen and I sat on my front porch. I noticed an odd look on her face as she held her hand to her mouth. “What’s the matter,” I asked her several times without response. “What’s wrong?” Finally, after quite a few moments she said she saw my mother. “I didn’t know you two looked so much alike.”
Indeed, we do. I knew she saw my mother. I asked what she wore. Ellen described a favorite jacket but mostly she focused on Liv’s physical appearance so similar to mine. My psychic friend explained that at first she noticed a pink glow and then the luminosity transformed into the image of my mother sitting on the arm of my chair. Liv seemed to be enjoying an afternoon visit with us girls, much as she would have in life.
In April 2009, I was extremely ill one evening and since I'd never been sick, or even to a doctor, I felt afraid and anxious. I called my nurse friend Mary who took me to the emergency room. Mary stayed with me for the entire four hours. The doctor sent me home with medication and a directive to have my gallbladder removed, which I did and now I’m fine.
Other than my clean bill of health, the best part of the experience is knowing I have good friends on both sides of the “veil.”
My mother's spirit manifested to Mary as she drove home at 3:00 in the morning. Only my mother’s face appeared and she thanked Mary over and over for “being there” for me as she was so worried I was alone. (My mother used to be a huge worrier so her personality hasn’t change now that she’s on the other side!)
Needless to say, Mary, who’s a psychiatric nurse, felt “freaked out” and thought she was hallucinating and/or losing her mind. She told the vision to go away, that she was scared. Later, as she showered, my mother again communicated to Mary although she didn’t materialize this time. She apologized for frightening her. The night of my ordeal I “heard" my mother’s reassuring words but her actual manifestation to Mary is awesome to me and another example of her “living” presence. Our loved ones and their love for us are eternal. We are always loved and we are never alone.
Submitted by Lynda Lee Macken, February 14, 2010
Purchase Lynda's book Array of Hope, An Afterlife Journal.