The yellow butterflies are gone. It’s almost winter. I knew this was coming. I believe I saw the last one about a week ago. It was the day before Thanksgiving and I was out for a walk on a warm November day. I was thinking of Mom…and there she was. A yellow butterfly popped up right in my path and floated along in front of me for a minute or 2. I teared up, knowing it was probably the last yellow butterfly until spring.
But, I’m okay with it. While I’ll miss seeing Mom in this way, I’ve talked to her about this. I actually started thinking about it back in early October, realizing the time would come when it would be too cold for the butterflies. And when I talked to Mom, I told her that I knew she would communicate with me in some other way – that she would keep telling me she is okay and remind me that she is always with me.
Of course, I know all this without butterflies or other signs. I’ve always felt her with me. I don’t know if I can properly explain it but, I also feel as though she somehow communicates with me on a regular basis. She comes to me in dreams or sometimes tells me things in my dreams. She gives me signs in subtle ways – a certain song that pops up on my iPod playlist while I’m out running as I’m asking myself a question or pondering an issue. Or maybe in not so subtle ways like when I was bitching to myself about what a mess my room was and how I really needed to clean it, and I tripped over my coat rack and swear I broke my toe. She got me good on that one! Mom is always, always, with me and always talking to me.
A few weeks ago, my youngest niece got married. I went out for a short run earlier in the day. It was a cool day, but sunny. I began to think about the fact that Mom wouldn’t physically be there, but that she did get to see her granddaughter in her wedding dress just a few days before she passed. It was a very special moment. As I was thinking this, I said to Mom, “I know I probably won’t see you today” – meaning the yellow butterflies. No sooner had those words shot across my brain when the yellow butterfly floated in front of me. She wanted me to know that she knew what today was and that she was indeed with the family on that special day.
So, you see, I am a firm believer in a person’s spirit staying alive. I see it. I hear it. I feel it. Mom will forever be with me, giving me signs, guiding me and telling me things in her own way – which means I’ll need to figure it out. Just like when she was still here on this Earth. She’s probably getting a laugh out of this!
And I know that I won’t be seeing the yellow butterflies for a few months. But, I do know that Mom will talk to me in other ways. The song on my iPod at an opportune moment. An unexpected email from an old friend. A friendly gesture from a complete stranger. That will be my Little Mama.