Today is the day we lay my grandfather to rest.
This is a very strange time for me because I’m just dandy. I’m not sad or depressed. I’m not upset. I mean, I’m hungry and need to eat, but I’m not a complete wreck. I don’t have to take life ‘day by day’ for the simple reason that my views on this human experience have changed. Just come ride with me for a moment. I promise this will all make sense in a few minutes.
Imagine you are going on a cross country trip, just browsing the scenery. You hop into your car but you have a list of cities you want to visit. You pack up the car with some clothes and some money to get you started. And now you’re off! Let’s assume you leave from Miami and you get onto I-95. After some driving, you look at a sign that says “Exit 261: Daytona Beach” and you decide to exit the highway to explore the city for a few days. In your time there, you stay in a few hotels, make a few new friends, help a guy change his tire, and an assortment of other random things. After a few days or weeks, you decide to get back on the highway and choose another city or you cruise until something interesting pops up like the world’s biggest ball of twine. But of course, you keep in touch with the friends you made there even though you may currently be in Idaho.
Now . . .
What if I told you that your spirit is just traveling highways and each time you jump off and exit, it’s a new/different lifetime? There are infinite ways to travel the highways. North, south, east, west, back roads, country roads, city roads. All types of combinations. That is true freedom. The clothes you left with originally probably aren’t the clothes you have 18 cities from now. Naturally, you buy new clothes when you need them. These become your skill sets. You needed to be mechanic in Daytona Beach but a pastry chef in Atlanta. You needed to be an author in San Francisco but a professional athlete in Dallas. After a few lifetimes, you make some mistakes and pick up some valuable skills that come in handy later.
My granddaddy’s spirit has gotten back on the highway for another adventure. He completed his adventure in Daytona, had a good time, learned some things, married a dope woman, had some cool kids and grandkids, raced go karts and picked up a couple skillsets. It was time for him to get back on the highway for his next adventure. His time was over in this city/lifetime. That’s just the way it is. Some people have the blessing of really being able to enjoy a lifetime and get the most out of it. Some people are forced out quickly because their mission was brief.
I can honestly say that his mission was complete. I understand this. I know this. And for me, it makes this transition a bit easier. I’m lucky to have been near him in this timeline and I really hope I get to meet up with him in another timeline. Maybe our spirits will be two best friends in London or 15th century soap makers in China. Maybe our spirits will find each other in a bike shop or he will be a kindred spirit I meet in a random hardware store. Who knows? All I know is that he will definitely be calling back to check on us and help us when he can. Just like Elizabeth does when she decided to be moving spoons in the kitchen unnecessarily late at night.
It was his time. I had a chat with Miss Alma and Mrs. Liz to either create a source of help we needed to care for him or to come get him and bring him back to the highway. They chose the latter 2 days later. I was here with him during his final human breaths. It was calm. I reassured him to relax and breathe because his mother, sister, and wife were waiting for him with open arms. I covered him in the purest of love and light, prayed over him, and prayed for a smooth transition and protection from malicious energies. Then I received confirmation of his transition from a friend who completed an aura reading for him.
Earlier that morning, my aunt mentioned how it looked like he was fighting in his bed. He was fighting. He was fighting the fact that he had to leave us. My grandfather is the physical embodiment of the root chakra. Grounded, protected, rooted in the physical world, things need to be tangible. A mover and a shaker. A master manifester. He thinks it, he draws it, he creates it, and now it’s here in the physical. While you’re still processing what he built, he’s already making improvements and adjustments. He’s the best I’ve ever seen do it. People will say “I’m going to do x, y, and z.” Granddaddy was already halfway done planing how to do it before mentioning it. Very strong King of Pentacles energy and very strong 8 energy. He’s always been the strong but gentle and wise protector. Strength isn’t always loud and violent. Strength doesn’t have an ego. It’s calm and direct. I’ve only heard him raise his voice less than a handful of times . . . unless he’s fussing about the bush in the front yard growing like an idiot, but that is just funny. He didn’t want to leave us, and I wasn’t sure why I felt pulled to reassure him that everything is okay until later that evening.
You don’t need to worry about me, I’m doing great. I got everything I wanted for his transition. I wanted to be with him, I wanted to know what to do, I wanted it to be easeful, and I wanted him to be at home. He is the reason I got my first reiki attunement. I wanted to be able to help soothe his aches and pains from getting older and riding his bicycle. I never thought I’d be able to use reiki in one of the most important moments of his life. I really got to participate in my elder’s transition into ancestorhood. Do you realize how absolutely incredible that is? That’s an honor and a privilege to be trusted with that moment because it was timed perfectly. If I sound excited and impressed, I am. I’ll explain.
I was scheduled to work on Tuesday at 4 pm but had a mandatory meeting at 2 pm the same day. That morning, I noticed his breath had gotten shorter, so I googled “cancer death signs” because he isn’t the first to have cancer and isn’t the last. He didn’t experience any pain for the most part and he wasn’t talking as much as he used to so I had to use my clairsentience and research. At this point, I arrange to get my cousin to Daytona the next day, and a few minutes later, I decided she needed to get here ASAP. I call my job and let them know what was going on and I got the manager who understood fully and she said it wasn’t a problem. (I later found out that the meeting was just about common sense things that I either already do or literally never do.) We had been telling him that she was coming for the past few days excuse his time perception was nonexistent. My grandfather who usually knew the month, the day, or the time of day was very out of it. She is his energizer, I’m his overseer. At least that’s how my aunt describes us. I decide that I’m going to leave to get her around 1pm. Around 11:45 am, I get the drop from spirit that its happening now. He is between two portals and I’m there to help him. A few hours before, would have been an embarrassing struggle. A few hours later, I wouldn’t have been home. (This is the part where one of the church folk says “look at God,” the sentiment remains the same even though I avoid church like the plaque.) My aunt was here with me because my dad needed to go to work that morning. His training let our super early because they (Spirit, the ancestors, my grandma, our guides and angels) knew that he needed to be back in Daytona quickly but not too quickly. My dad was there when my grandma transitioned. I honestly don’t think he would have been able to mentally and spiritually handle witnessing both of his parents transition. That’s heavy for anyone. I knew my aunt would want to be present. She’s a daddy’s girl.
I was here with my granddad and aunt, my dad was on his way back to the house and my cousin was still in Jacksonville. This is perfect. I’m getting giddy just writing this because it was perfectly orchestrated.
Soon after he passed, I hop on google for a number of things and start talking to my spiritually inclined friends because those candles and incenses and tarot cards my mother wanted me to get rid of actually saved my life through this entire process. Without them and the connections I have formed to Spirit and my guides, I’d be losing my mind inside of someone’s mental facility because I tried to do some harmful things to myself in the name of grief. Let’s all clap for the blessing of the internet and internet friends. I saw an article that spoke of the timing of physical death. It spoke to how, sometimes, the person dying knows “when” to die, especially when it comes to a terminal disease. I saw that, and everything made sense. I usually open on Mondays at 10 am. If it had been Monday, I wouldn’t have been home, my dad would have been here and my aunt would have also been at work. Not a good plan. I really didn’t want my cousin to be here during his transition because that would have shattered her more than getting him just after his death. We didn’t have any visitors, no appointments with hospice people, nothing crazy happened. It was just another calm and quiet day of us trying a navigate yet a new space/task here.
The perfect moment. It was immaculate. My grandma’s spirit was already hanging out here because I was able to physically do something I didn’t think I had the strength to do. I was able to keep a level head because I knew what has happening, what was going to happen, and what should happen. I knew what to do afterwards because I read that caregiver’s manual from Hospice from cover to cover, twice. I knew my aunt and dad weren’t going to touch it by how they looked at it in the hospital. I am guided, protected and covered by some of the dopest energy beings in the game. They knew I was ready for this, they basically prepared me for it. I had my crying fit of grief and desperation in April when we heard his diagnosis. I had my three days of barely being able to function, and then I kicked into “let’s get this done” mode. I think this scared my family because my grandfather is my favorite person on the planet. Period. No one comes even close. Everyone knows this about me. So whatever he needs isn’t an inconvenience, it’s an honor. It’s an honor that Spirit trusted me to be 15 feet away from him during this entire process. Spirit knew I would be in a new space that I had to learn to navigate. But it’s was honor to be able to return just a fraction of the care he has given to me in my short 24 years of his long 77 year life. There wasn’t a single atom of hesitation in my body. I heard his diagnosis and started to mentally rearrange my work schedule and day to day happenings to make sure he had everything he needed. It was hard, a couple thugs tears were shed, quite a few “I don’t think I can handle this” moments occurred. But one of the biggest lessons I learned was that nothing is constant except a person’s character. That will never change. My granddaddy was still cracking jokes even as his health deteriorated. Who a person is at their very core will always remain. Remember that. Another lesson I learned is that people will unknowingly try to pass off their stress and confusion onto you and then get offended that you aren’t experiencing their self inflicted chaos. This was interesting to watch my dad and aunt overthink themselves into a frenzy. It became irritating until I stepped back and realized that this is their best attempt to grieve, cope, and not wear every conflicting emotion on their sleeves. Empathy really is the key to understanding. Being a sensitive kid finally paid off and benefited me for once. A third lesson: this might be a line of work I explore. Creating space for people who suddenly become caregivers and may not me mentally, emotionally, or physically equipped for this new role. Providing advice, support, an ear, or a shoulder. Helping others transition peacefully. I’m not sure what this work is called, but I’m certain there aren’t enough Black people speaking in plain english doing it. I’ve learned to trust the people in my life that are in my life for my highest good, even when I don’t fully understand what they are doing. Ony’Xemi is one of those people. I just let them do their thing and it helps. They also empower me to do things on my own as well. If your friends don’t say “I’ll do this for you but this is how you can do this for yourself” without being condensing, get some new friends. Rei told me that she wasn’t sure what I needed but she lit a candle for me. Jaz has been an ear, provided advice, and pointed my research. Dr. Jane has been affirming me for months during readings and has been an example of doing the work and making it personal. She teaches me that there aren’t any strict rules, just general guidelines. I can’t stress this enough. Your inner circle should be a space where you protect, uplift, encourage, and love each other. It should feel like peace and ease. Your “best friend” shouldn’t be stressing you out and belittling you all the time. Your “partner” shouldn’t be downplaying your dreams and aspirations. If anybody in your life is a broken fire hydrant of negativity, either fight them or kick them out of your space. I’d suggest doing both, but sometimes I’m a bad idea bear.
I say all of that to say these things:
- I don’t plan on crying too much today.
- I plan on keeping this black tourmaline close because the energy is dense here. I gotta clear some of this up. I’ll also be adding some sweetgrass to my clutch and car today.
- I’m fine. I truly am.
- Grandma and Granddad, I really need your spirits to comfort and protect your children. They’re really going through it. Understandably so.
- My granddad is the realest of the realest and I’m elated that I was trusted with his final days. Nothing else will ever bring me as much pride and joy. The birth of my kid and getting my doctorate may come in a close second. And I’m not joking.
- I’ve been pretending to be more sad than I actually am because my family is sad but that has been exhausting so y’all are going to see my joy and hopefully it brings you some joy as well.
- My friends really are incredible beings. I love them so much. I can’t even explain how important they are to me. They each deserve nothing but the finest and best this planet has to offer. The Black people magic is strong in my life. Thank you. And shoutout to my spirit for making us Black in this lifetime, she makes excellent decisions.
The only reason I’m going to this memorial is the same exact reason he told me I should go to my grandmother’s funeral. I asked him, “do I have to go? I don’t want to see her in a casket. I can’t handle it.”
His reply, “yes, you need to go, because if you didn’t go, you would feel worse than you are going to feel seeing her like that.”
Norris McKinzie is the only person who could ask me to do anything and I”m doing it without question or debate. The rest of humanity? I need a few details because some of y’all don’t make sense or think things through.
I’ll see you when I see you Granddad.
I don’t expect everyone who reads this to understand me and my process. I don’t expect my father to read this and not call me concerned and worried. All I ask of anyone reading this post and anything else on my blog is to try and hold space without judgement until you are able to fully absorb and research for your own understanding. Agreeing with me isn’t a requirement for being my friend or loved one. Everything isn’t for everyone’s consumption. I wrote this for the people who feel like they have to perform being “normal” for the sake of everyone else. Know that I see you, I hear you, I feel you, and I’m holding space for you to be free. You aren’t crazy or insane. Some self righteous person is going to say you need Jesus. Keep your tarot cards, your candles, your mojo bags, your prayers, your ancestor veneration, and your beliefs (little do they know, these items can be used in conjunction with Jesus but don’t tell them that). Use them for your highest good and do the work you feel led to do. One day you may need to use your hands, your reiki, and your prayers in a situation you never imagined and it will help you remain grounded and a foundation for your loved ones to lean on. They may never understand why and you may never explain it, but they can’t deny the results.
I need to go eat and meditate to prepare for today. Mostly because my stomach is about to cause an internal revolution if I don’t.