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Hand on my Shoulder


Not "Revelation"-'tis-that waits, but our unfurnished eyes -Emily Dickinson

I was in my early 20's and far from the city that I grew up in. I didn't have a family really. My parents had loads of problems of their own, for starters my father had molested children, other than me, and after I reported him, my mom blamed me for "tearing the family apart". I wasn't close with my family in the least. I think even adults need some sort of tie to a parent of parental figure. It was hard feeling like I was all alone in the world. Even though my parents couldn't love and support me and I had been a foster child, I had always felt like my home was Sacramento, because most of my growing up had been there. And I had been living far away from Sacramento for a lot of years.

Life was really rough on me, I didn't have a good education, so economically I hadn't been able to improve my circumstances. Eventually, grinding poverty and hopelessness got the upper hand and I started to entertain thoughts of suicide. Whenever I wasn't working or taking care of my dog, I would cry. My baby-dog Jelly Bean would look at me with great concern during these times. Finally, things got so bad that I even had developed a plan; how I would do it and how to find the best home for Jelly Bean.

One very sad day, I had the day off work and was laying in bed. I had my eyes closed, but distinctly felt that someone had just entered my bedroom. I was afraid and not sure how I could defend myself. I suddenly felt calm, and got the impression I was not to be afraid, or to open my eyes. I perceived the individual as walking across the room towards me. Suddenly, a massive and strong hand grasped my shoulder! I dared not open my eyes, but knew from my position on the bed exactly how he must be stooped over looking directly in my face.

The palm rested over my clavicle and the fingertips overlapped my shoulder, the dimensions of this individual must have been astounding! I had remembered my aunt Kathy telling me that Grandpa Quinn was a large man and had big strong hands. The fear melted away, my awe continued, but somehow I just knew I had to keep my eyes shut or the exchange would end. I began to feel so warm! The warmth began in the core of my body and began to radiate out until I felt I was glowing as brightly as the sun! I felt an amazing energy going directly from the hand and taking hold in my body. It was like all the love and happiness life has to offer was being poured into me. I felt very protected too, as if this individually was letting me know I was in "good hands"! In my dancing heart I felt that I had so many reasons to live! I had so much to give as well! And the desire to live and thrive overcame my suicidal plan.

Finally, I just had to see the face that belonged to this person, and I opened my eyes. As my lids flew open the hand disappeared, leaving me to look at a room completely empty except for my dog and myself. The energy remained though. Filling me with love and happiness. I had received a special, special gift that enlarged my view of life and my own purpose. I learned that life was larger than I had known, and that life was full of unseen angels. I had and have more obstacles in my life, but never-ever again did I feel I was alone and that my life was entirely meaningless or hopeless.

The great Poet Rainer Maria Rilke wrote: "Be patient towards all that is unsolved in your heart, and learn to love the questions themselves..."

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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, Anonymous, has the following expectation about your feedback: I will read the comments and participate in the discussion.

Cman710 (9 stories) (91 posts)
7 years ago (2015-04-21)
That is absolutely sweet and moving.:) I can only imagine what that feeling would mean to someone in your situation. Very moving.
Nightgoddess (14 stories) (54 posts)
14 years ago (2008-02-26)
I can relate to your story. I remember when I was depressed and thinking the same thoughts and I would lie awake in bed crying. Then I felt warms hand touch my face and the pain and sorrow just disapeared and I was able to rest
rhodes68 (14 stories) (1596 posts)
14 years ago (2008-02-19)
Your story had a great impact on me Athena. There are times when our sorrows overwhelm us forgetting this way that it is the "obstacles" themselves and the way we overcome them that define us. I guess R.M.Rilke's message to "love the questions" is her way to say "cherish life".

Thank you for reminding me something so beautiful and yet... A bit forgotten.

God bless you ❤
Bellissima (12 stories) (792 posts)
15 years ago (2007-09-01)
Thanks for responding and I hope things are cleared up! I respect you very much and would hate for a misunderstanding! 😁
Athena (9 stories) (222 posts)
15 years ago (2007-08-31)
Hi Bellissima, Thanks for clarifing all you meant! Take good care, Athena ❤
Bellissima (12 stories) (792 posts)
15 years ago (2007-08-31)
Athena, I'm sorry to have offended or irritated you somehow, I wanted to reply to the pieces of your story you had mentioned. Your story was very personal and I guess I was just trying to make a personal reply. I understand you're taking a stand against suicide and for happiness and hope (unless somehow I have that wrong, I am really missing the big picture) What I was trying to say was that I'm glad you didn't commit suicide and are still around (as I said I'm glad to have 'met' you), I'm glad you found some support and comfort from the hand that touched you and gave you hope and calm. I wanted to get across that you had a chance to see the 'light' so to speak and you really took it to heart. I'm happy to know that this was a big eye opener for you and it gave hope to you and you are passing that hope on to others. I did read your comments so maybe I am just dense!
Athena (9 stories) (222 posts)
15 years ago (2007-08-28)
Looks like Bell didn't read my comments section before she plunged into assumptions about my story. Bell I noticed you disabled your email, so You should read everything the writer puts on page before you assume the purpose of the story.
Bellissima (12 stories) (792 posts)
15 years ago (2007-08-27)
Athena, thank you for sharing your story and some very personal info with us. I'm sorry to hear you've had such a hard young life, I'm sure you didn't write for sympathies but it's very sad. First, I'm happy you are here to tell your story (I'm pleased to have 'met' you), I'm glad you had Jelly Bean for comfort (pets are wonderful listeners) and I'm pleased you found great comfort from your Grandfather (I do think you know it was him) and your outlook has changed so dramatically. ❤
Athena (9 stories) (222 posts)
15 years ago (2007-08-24)
Blessed! Thanks for telling me about your experience too! You wouldn't classify me as a Christian, but I've experienced the POWER in calling on God and Jesus too.
blessed (3 stories) (14 posts)
15 years ago (2007-08-22)
Athena, this is one of the most beautiful stories I've read on this site. I'm so glad your outlook on life has changed for the better. A similar experience happened to me: I was lying down at home during my depression one day and it was like all of the bad things that had happened in my life and that were happening were running through my head. It became so painful that I just closed my eyes and said, "Jesus..." The very second after, I felt an amazing calm and peace as if someone had swept all negative thoughts out of my mind. It was God's peace which surpasses all understanding!
Athena (9 stories) (222 posts)
15 years ago (2007-08-22)
Thank you so much for writing, everyone. Pegark and Hada you really touched my heart!Pegark,your concern and care were felt and appriciated by me soo much! Pegark, I am doing really well in life now! My life is more rich than it has ever been! LIFE IS GOOD! And Pegark, Thank you for writing to me even though you don't feel comfortable with English. And everyone else; have fun deciding who you think the hand belonged to! I must say I felt very vulnerable leaving this very personal story and wondered if I really wanted to for along time. The deciding factor was that this story may help folks who read it, and on a few different levels. I included my personal bits of my own history in order to reach out to those who are survivors and those who have thought of suicide or perhaps are thinking of suicide. I realize that there are times when suicide is ok to do, ie in the last painful stages of cancer etc. However, I am sad to say that suicide is usually a permanent solution to a temporary problem. I believe that most often the soul survives the dead body and the person who is suicided will carry their problems and suffering to the otherside. Best to improve your life while it is easier for you to do so and you are alive. Only the living carry the special power to change consensual reality. I think that is why the ones not alive are so drawn to us, we are charged with taking care of life and reality- we are powerful in our service to life and the living. Whatever label we choose to put on the "not alive" it doesn't change who they are. God/dess, Jesus, Grandfather, grandmother, Ganesha or Soma, etc, they are convienent handels for those with declaritive minds, like us two-leggers. To us these are important handels, but not to anyone else. Most important thing is to take good care of yourself and everything around you. There is tremendous personal/spiritual growth in just taking good of yourself and others. You like everyone else on the planet have many many gifts. Our gifts (the living) are synergy of life. Life is More than just the sum of its parts; life is the 'positive' interaction of all of its part. The good care/gift you give are your power; enrich and empower yourself and in the best most real sense it will enrich and empower everyone all those who are alive. Please, cherish yourself and your life. BLAH BLAH BLAH Ok, I'm off my soap-box! 😆
paggark (4 stories) (25 posts)
15 years ago (2007-08-22)
I'm glad that you didn't do what you have planned on doing to yourself, you may not know it but there are some people that you may know or may not know that would terribly miss you. I'm glad your gardiean angel (I don't know how to spell good) safed you that day. A blood relative looks after one another even in death. I was the same as you, I wanted to end my life but something told me that I would be doing the wrong thing and that my parents, brothers and sister would need someone to look after them since my parents didn't have a good job to look after the family.

From the day when you were safed by the hands of your angel, good things will happen to you. At some point somethings will be hard to do alone and need to figure these things out on your own. On one point or the other, your angel will come and comfort you when you need them the most.

I hope you understand what I mean on the last paragraph because I'm not really good on my english seeing that I'm from the north of canada 😊.
Have a good day Athena and my gods people help you through the troublesome life you have endured.
Hada (36 posts)
15 years ago (2007-08-22)
Give thanks for the blessing that has come your way. " The more you give thanks, the more God increases your bounty..." This is one of the few stories I've read with a happy, (I would know how you'd feel) ending.
Annie (202 posts)
15 years ago (2007-08-22)
I have to echo Shane's words. I don't know who it was that saved you that day, but I'd be willing to bet my last dollar that it was your own special angel. I'm so glad you're still here. So..."quote" on Athena. ❤
Shane (13 stories) (1258 posts)
15 years ago (2007-08-21)
I can not and I am not going to say this was your grandfather, I can however say that someone was looking out for you that day. God/dess works in mysterious ways. Thank you for sharing your story with us.

Peace, Love, and Luck be with you.

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