Now, I suppose to get my own sense of reluctance and cynicism out in the open, I should say that until two years ago I was a very vocal disbeliever in anything out of the realm of touch, sight and sound, any form of religion, any form of energy that had no conventional source. You get the idea, I was very taken with science and decided to pursue a career in conservation and land management. If anything I am more passionate about this choice today, but I have different motivations.
I currently live in Western Australia, and I am 23 years old. I was 21 at the time I had this experience.
My brother and I had just moved from our rental house back into our grandparents home'. Granddad's strength and tireless energy (which to us kids was fabled) was simply evaporating and he was confined to his bed. The whole house seemed to ebb with him. I don't mean the lights, I mean the people in the home. Obviously Gran took events hard and it's to be expected, but my brother and I even began to experience regular headaches.
I began to have a recurring dream where my Granddad was standing across the road from our old home in Scotland, waving towards me. He was wearing a white pinstripe suit and was easily 20 years younger than I could ever remember him (I'd never seen him so fat!), but I somehow knew it was him.
I'd get an almost hypoglycemic response while awake, sometimes moving through the house I would become light headed. The only thing I could do to stop from passing out was to sit down and rest. At first I tried to shuffle into another room when I felt it coming on but eventually, finding me slumped at a table, my brother informed me that my eyes had been open, I had turned to acknowledge his presence, but wouldn't speak. I just stared at him for minutes apparently before I lowered my head and woke up. He asked me if I was on drugs, I was not. Even our Labrador Tubs seemed to age overnight, his hind legs no longer allowing him to climb the stairs of our garden that until recently he simply bounded up.
At this point I should say: I had no previous health issues, a fit, active 21 year old, I went to the doctors, had blood tests and my blood pressure tested. I checked the house thoroughly for gas leaks, anything to explain what was happening. Things continued like this for another week, then... And this really stands out to me, Granddad passed away with us around him, at 1am, the 1st day of Spring. I have since come to know that this coincides loosely with the first day of Imbolc.
I started to experience these episodes of mine more frequently, almost once a night at least and it became worse when his body was removed for his funeral. I kept trying to rationalize things, this was just my grief stricken mind...failing, I supposed. I couldn't fathom why the entire family would experience physical symptoms of the same kind at the same time, or why mine were worse.
At any rate, the day before the funeral I was morosely pawing through a few of his boxes looking for an item Gran wanted, and came across two ram headed copper twisted torcs. I had seen one worn on my Granddad's wrist before he had gone into hospital previous to us moving in, and there was a matching torc for the neck. I took these and immediately put one on my wrist and neck and the feeling was indescribable. I mean I just smiled, and smiled... I wasn't recollecting on fond times, or anything like this. I was just immediately and genuinely happy. I slept in the torcs and didn't dream.
The next day at his funeral service, as everybody had taken a seat on the benches set up, a large picture of his face was brought in and set on an easel. Now I had not seen this particular photograph before, it was taken of him serving in china in the British forces. And he was the spitting image of how I had seen him in my dream (replace the suit with army fatigues of course). During the rest of the service I can only describe my reaction as fervor, I began to see the features of his face distort slightly, and looked around but this wasn't registering with anybody else. Whether it was my eyes seeing what I would prefer or like to see, I can't say but I don't know what else to think but that the inanimate picture with his solemn face on it, actually changed its expression and began to smile at me. Hesitantly, the corners of the mouth twitching at first as if he were amused before arching up into a genuine, human smile.
There was a video taken of the service, I haven't brought myself to track down the footage yet. I hope this is true for other people, as I'm positive I would have looked like a fanatic sitting there with my eyes glued to the back of the room.
None of this is by any means close to the direct first hand experiences most of you have had, but I simply can't make heads nor tails of it. Should I even be posting this here? Is this just grief spawned delusion? It has been some time, and I still won't keep the torcs off for more than an hour.