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Uncle's Hand


My mother's brother had always been the "trouble maker" of their family. Growing up as the youngest son in the family, he was always the rebellious one. The first time I met him was during my mom's funeral, and he was escorted by two officers. During that time he was serving some time in prison and was permitted to attend his favourite sister's funeral to bid his farewells. They actually flew him in as he was in another province.

Later on, as I grew older I would go visit him on my own. He was always in and out of jail, so sometimes I'd see him at home or sometimes I'd visit him in jail. The last time I saw him alive was around 2003. He passed away a year after that. I remembered when I last visited him alive, he was living in a half-way house. He was allowed out of the half-way house from 6 am - 5 pm. I was staying at his house during the visit.

One day he came home and started talking on the phone in the room I was trying to sleep in. This was around 7 a.m. I obviously woke up because he was chatting away, sitting on a chair in front of my bed. I turn around to ask him, "Why are you in here?! Talk somewhere else man!" He laughed and got off the phone. Then he said to me, "You look just like your mother. You know, she and I were the closest of our siblings. Your mom always helped me when I needed her to." Even though it's nice to hear, but as a sleepy teenager, I just wanted him out! So I said, "Ok ok, talk to you later," then I turned around back to the wall to get more sleep. He then laughed and placed his hand on my back and gave me a few pats before leaving the room.

A year later, I got a call from a cousin saying uncle's gone, he was shot. (I won't say where or why for privacy reasons and respects to uncle), but our family somewhat prepared for this day mentally, due to his living style. A few days later we have all gathered in his city and attended the funeral. I was staying at his house in the same room as before, as some relatives were at other houses.

It must have been around 6 am or 7 am, when I suddenly woke up. I didn't move but I didn't feel alone. Then as quick as my thoughts were going, I felt a cold hand, clear as day on my back. I knew it was my uncle. I didn't move not because I was scared, but more I didn't want to scare HIM off. But of course, after a few seconds which seemed like hours, I turned around and nothing was there.

It felt odd at first because I, all of a sudden, didn't feel alone, but then when he placed his hand on my back, though it was cold, I felt very warm inside.

I never really considered us that close, but because I look so much like my mother, I know he loved me lots and felt a connection with me. He's told me countless amount of times how much we look alike. Now he can be with his favourite sister and go back to the fun days =)

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

ChrisB (6 stories) (1515 posts)
8 years ago (2013-09-10)
thank you for this beautiful story. He probably saw the love you gave him just like your mother did, He gave you that pat on the back to tell you he is ok with mom. Thank you fro sharring and hope to hear from you soon
notjustme (19 stories) (850 posts)
8 years ago (2013-09-10)
Mamachong - it's a house where a group of people stay after getting out of prison, before they can go home. Kind of like a trial. He has to sleep there and is allowed out a certain amount of hours during the day, depending on the person's behaviour during this time, will determine when he can officially go home. That's as much as I know about it, hope it helps!
mamachong (11 stories) (228 posts)
8 years ago (2013-09-10)
What is a halfway house? I thought a halfway house was kind of like a group home, but mabie I'm wrong?
notjustme (19 stories) (850 posts)
8 years ago (2013-09-09)
Spiritwaiting- thank you for reading. Yea even though he made some bad decisions in life, like who hasn't, i'm glad he's in a good place now =)
spiritwaiting (42 stories) (843 posts)
8 years ago (2013-09-08)
[at] notjustme, I like this story. It warmed my heart. I'm sure it was your uncle just saying goodbye and checking in on you to make sure you were ok. And he knew, the hand on your back would automatically send you the message that it was him.

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