We visited my grandmother’s gravesite today. As I spoke to her, my daughter chimed in, “But, Mama, she can’t hear you. That’s just a stone and a picture of her. She’s in the sky now.”
“That’s right, baby girl, she is in Heaven. But do you remember what I told you about Heaven?”
I could tell she was thinking about it and trying to recall previous conversations we’ve had.
Like on that rainy Saturday afternoon when we turned up the country music and broke out into a dance party in the middle of the living room, just to see the sunshine break through the clouds.
And that random drive to the oceanfront when we decided to run as fast as we could to splash our toes in the waves, just to end up soaked and laughing until our bellies hurt.
Or that quiet moment beside the pond, where the water sat patiently still and the turtles bathed in the sun’s rays and the birds spoke in beautiful melodies, just as the wind rustled the leaves to fall gently around us.
“Heaven is everywhere, right Mama?”
“It sure is, sweetie. Nana can hear us when we talk to her. She watches you, too.”
“Yes. Sometimes when you don’t even realize it.”
And it was with that response that I thought about all those moments of her presence.
That favorite misplaced book that suddenly reappears on the bookshelf.
That subtle breeze that cools you off after anxiously chasing your children around the playground.
That perfect wildflower that stands out amidst the grass and catches the corner of your eye.
That favorite song on the radio that plays just as you’re about to lose your patience with the traffic.
That afternoon cup of coffee and quiet moment of coloring with your toddler after a long day of meetings.
That harmony of crickets just outside the bedroom window as you lay your head to rest after a difficult day.
“What is it, baby girl?”
“You told me that Heaven is in my heart.”
“It is. Heaven is wherever you need it to be, whenever you need it to be.”