My proof of survival came through someone I scarcely knew, Eighteen years ago, Millie and Paul moved into the house next door. Pleasant, bothering no one, they soon became neighborhood favorites.
Shortly after they settled in, grief left them stunned, Their youngest child, eight-year-old vibrant, pretty Nicole, died suddenly on a bright February morning. In 1998, I saw Nicole, although I didn’t recognize her at first.
While reading in bed, I looked up and noticed a girl standing nearby. As I started, she smiled warmly and put fingers on her lips. She emanated such friendliness I instinctively realized she meant no harm. She reminded me of someone; I couldn’t place whom, Slim and lithe, she had smartly coiffed red-gold hair and a glowing complexion.
I stared, fascinated and wondering, positive she came from another world, but not scared at all. In her mid-twenties, she had the poise and chic of a high-fashion model, Most impressive, however, was the deep contentment of her expression, smacking of religious dedication. Obviously she was on a mission and loving her role.
For perhaps half a minute, our eyes met. Then, moving swiftly, she wrote a couple of sentences on a white sheet of paper and deposited it at my side, not touching me. There was a sense of an impassable gap between us. Drawing back, she vanished. No fading-one instant she was present, the next, not. Ditto the paper.
When I told Millie of her visit she asked, “How was she dressed?”
“In a sky-blue frock. A classy job. It had fancy buttons. Silk, I think.”
“She was buried in one like that. And this is the anniversary of her death!”
“But why didn’t she leave a message?” I asked.
“Oh, she did, Wyn. She radiated God’s peace and happiness. Plainly she’s with him and also with us. What could be better than that!”
Newark, New Jersey