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Final Goodbye


This story concerns the first time I encountered a human spirit who had already passed away. At the time I was still very young and didn't fully comprehend the gravity of death or what it meant to have someone I know die.

As a child, I spent a lot of time with my grandmother from my father's side of the family. She didn't bake cookies or cakes, but she was my grandmother, and she always made me feel welcome and loved when we visited.

Unfortunately, my grandmother passed away when I was about 6, so the time I was able to spend with her was quite limited. I don't recall the last time I visited her; only that one day she was there and then she wasn't. I'm sure my parents told me my grandmother had gone to heaven and that we would go see her before she went away for good, but I didn't understand what was going on.

I recall the wake which was held at a church. I remember there being quite a turnout. I remember what a nice day it was, how the sunlight came pouring in through the long windows on the sides of the church. And I remember sitting next to one of my older cousins with a bottle of orange juice. I knew I had to be serious, but I didn't fully appreciate how grave the matter was.

My parents sat in a pew a few rows ahead of my cousin and I, and after some time, my father came to ask me if I wanted to see my grandmother. I said that I did. He took me up to see her. I think I recall him telling me that she was sleeping or something of the sort. I also remember something inside me telling me that she was not asleep, but that she was dead. I could tell simply by looking at my grandmother that the life had left her. I may have even told my father so.

My father took me back to my seat and I sat, kicking my feet back and forth, waiting for the wake to be over. I remember everyone going their separate ways at the end of the ceremony, until we'd meet again to hold a vigil one final time at her home.

So we went to the vigil sometime after that. It couldn't have been more than a few days after, and it was evening by the time we arrived. The adults went into my grandmother's home and the kids stayed outside to play in the meantime. At some point I tried squeezing in to catch a glimpse of what was going on, but I only saw pictures and candles, and decided to go back out and play.

I don't remember what time we went home that night, but I very likely fell asleep on the ride home. Later on that night, however, I awoke to use the restroom. I turned on the hall light as I exited my room, regardless of the fact that the restroom was immediately to my left. I also turned on the restroom light before so much as looking in.

So I did my business, washed my hands, and went about going back to my room. When I opened the restroom door, however, I saw something I could never have anticipated. I saw my grandmother. She was fully formed, save for the lower half of her legs which faded into nothingness. It was my grandmother, but the sight of her that night startled me and I ran into my room and hid under the covers. At some point I managed to drift off, but I didn't forget my grandmother's visit.

Since that evening, I have yet to see my grandmother again. I've talked to her on several occasions, and I know that she's heard me when I'm overcome with a sense of well-being. I'm glad that she came to visit me that night, although I only wish I'd mustered the courage to call out to her if only to say goodbye.

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The following comments are submitted by users of this site and are not official positions by Please read our guidelines and the previous posts before posting. The author, HazMan_III, has the following expectation about your feedback: I will read the comments and participate in the discussion.

HazMan_III (4 stories) (91 posts)
13 years ago (2011-01-19)
DC- First of all, thank you for taking the time to read my story and offer your input. I can't stress how much I appreciate it. And come to think of it, there are many stories about people who've been visited by their loved ones, aren't there? I consider it a blessing, one I'm thoroughly grateful for.

Once again, thank you for reading my story, and thank you for the feedback. I do hope you'll stick around and read and enjoy my other stories.
DCinAZ (guest)
13 years ago (2011-01-19)
Hi HazMan_III,
That's a sweet story. And yes, I do believe she comes to visit you. After all, who would know that special presence better than you?
I'm of the belief that once they've passed over, if they feel they are needed, they can travel back and forth to pay us a visit, maybe soothe our fears. There are just too many accounts of just that, for us not to know it's possible.
Here's to your Grandmother! ❤ ❤ ❤
Trix (14 stories) (407 posts)
13 years ago (2011-01-14)
Hi HazMan_III, sorry I misunderstood. I thought she was still around. I've read your story again and I understand it now better. I'm glad she crossed over, and family does watch over their loved ones still bounded to earth I believe that. I wish I could say goodbye to my grandfather too, just for the last time. I know how you feel. Sometimes I just wish I could hear his laugh again, but we will see them again soon. I say soon because each day is passing by like a dream and it's going fast if you think about it. I'm glad you could handle death on such young age, now I feel better. Look forward reading your other stories. Take care. Trix 😉
HazMan_III (4 stories) (91 posts)
13 years ago (2011-01-14)
Trix- I'm quite certain my grandmother crossed over long ago. Oftentimes the spirits of relatives will visit before they move on. Even though I know she's moved on, I know she still watches over me and my family.

I can't give you an exact age, although I'm quite sure I was about 5 or 6, but no older. Truth be told, I wasn't afraid of seeing my grandmother, and I feel like I was prepared to face death (thank you, Lion King). I never cried about her passing 'til I was much older, but I think it was my grandmother's will that I not grieve over her passing because she'd never truly gone.

Asrealasitgets- First off I'd like to offer my condolences. I'm sorry you never had the chance to meet your grandmother or spend some time with her when she was well. I'm sure she watches over you now.

I don't believe I was negatively impacted by being exposed to death or spirits at such an early age. I think it was critical in my understanding that death was not the final frontier, and certainly nothing to fear.

In any case, I'd like to thank you both for reading my story and giving some feedback. It's truly appreciated. I hope you enjoyed this story and will look at some of the others I'll be publishing when the opportunity arises.
asrealasitgets (1 posts)
13 years ago (2011-01-14)
I went through something similar but different, it was my grandmother on my mother's side and I never really knew her because she died before I turned 5. The only things keeping her alive where machines, and I swear I saw her before she died, but I lived in Delaware and she lived in Maine. I'm not sure how seeing her before she died matches up with other experiences, but I know how seeing a deceased relative's body can screw with a kid, and I know how seeing ghosts/spirits/whatever you want to call them can really mess with a kid at a young age.
Trix (14 stories) (407 posts)
13 years ago (2011-01-14)
Hi HazMan III, shame it seems like you had a wonderful grandmother that is still around with her family. Maybe she is not ready to cross over and to leave you behind yet. You might help her to cross over when she's ready someday.
How old were you when she died? Why I ask is because for a child not realizing what death is all about going to a funeral and look into the coffin to see his grandmother, I think it's a bit hard on a child. Sorry with all respect, maybe your father thought it was the right thing to do, and I'm sure his intentions was good, but I don't think I would put a child through something like that to see his grandmother dead in a coffin before he's the right age. Thanks for sharing. Trix

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