Life, Death and Spirituality

Month: March, 2014


Yesterday, 26 March 2014 was the fifteen month anniversary of our beautiful son, Rowan’s death.  Fifteen months ago today I didn’t want to live either.  I felt the strongest yearning to be with Rowie – not to leave him by himself wherever he was.  Any mother will understand and appreciate this.  In my mind he was in an unfamiliar place; a place where he would be scared and lonely; a place that was threatening and intimidating in its secrecy and stealth.  What sort of place is it that doesn’t show itself to its future inhabitants?  What has it got to hide?  To be absolutely honest, although I desperately wanted to be with Rowan I was scared – scared of death; scared of dying.  This unknown place where we are all supposed to end up; this Heaven, paradise, Nirvana, happy hunting ground – has remained so well concealed and mysterious to us that, by nature, dying becomes an alarming and disconcerting thought.

Some months on I was in San Francisco with Jodie and after spending a week with her she muscle-tested me on my beliefs to see how they had changed.  One of the major shifts I found was that, on being asked ‘are you frightened of death or dying?’ I could categorically state that I was, in no way, shape or form afraid of death and dying – I felt connected with the Universe; I felt connected with God/Goddess/Source/Higher Energy – whatever designation you feel comfortable with. 

My journey has taken me to some strange ‘head’ places.  Some of the ideas I have tackled have left my mind spinning; some have resonated with strong truth.  Most are things that I would have scorned fifteen months ago.

I started this tour with the sole (and soul – spiritual joke!) intention of being able to communicate directly with Rowie in Heaven.  I have not abandoned this resolve.  I have noticed shifts in my awareness recently.  I see him when I am awake out of the very corner of my eye, usually in the afternoon, but it is only a very brief glimpse.  I am very aware, when I am writing my posts, that he is standing with me.  I can write something but then, just as quickly, delete it – having got a strong feeling that it isn’t quite what he wants written. 

Some of you will now think that I have completely and utterly lost the plot.  I haven’t.  I think my meditation practices are beginning to pay off.  I am managing, at long last, to quieten my mind and I am achieving a sort of personal freedom through my meditation.  I am managing to create balance in my life.  I feel a certain harmony.  I am not living in a perpetual state of happiness which is my aim but I am spending a lot more time in a happy and joyful state.  This state of happiness reflects on the rest of my life.  I joke with Chris about it but even he has noticed that whilst living in this state of happiness, happiness is returned to you tenfold.  He notices that people that we meet, albeit at the supermarket or in the post office, Paper Plus, down the street; they are all more relaxed and friendly than they have ever been.  I see this as the Universe reacting as only it knows how; through the Universal Laws of Attraction.  What we give out, we receive. 

I am mastering love.  I have always been able to love Chris, Francis and Rowie – with a huge, all-consuming love.  I have always managed to love most of my extended family members; but I’m not sure that I have ever been able to love others.  Like, yes….but love….?  I now find myself feeling love in my heart-centre for other people!  It’s an astounding feeling at first.  It took me completely by surprise the first few times I noticed it!  I even feel love sometimes for people on television!  I have been doing an amazing 8 minute heart-centred meditation every day (sometimes more than once a day because it’s so awesome!) and I notice the shift every time I do it.  If anyone wants this guided meditation let me have your email address and I will forward the link to you.  I am meeting awesome new people daily and my life is getting richer every day.

Well Rowie.  You gave me so very much in the 17 years you were with us.  I am astonished at how much you continue to give me in so many ways.  If it wasn’t for you I would have never started this journey.  What next?  I just love getting up in the morning because I never know what is around the corner.



I would like to change the word ‘Monday’ to ‘Awesomenessday’!! 

I am thinking that if we wake up on ‘Awesomenessday’ and say to ourselves (or out loud and proud) ‘Wow, it’s Awesomenessday – the start of an awesome week.  Today is going to be amazing.  The coffee is going to taste better than ever; I’m going to have an amazing journey to work – I’m going to see someone or something that makes me laugh on the way.  My work mates will have had an amazing weekend and will be really happy and……….etc.’ or ‘the kids will be really happy today; they are looking forward to having an awesome day; I’ll get everything accomplished today in double-quick time so that I can spend time with them when they come home…..etc’!  I wonder if the hideous archetype Monday would turn into this ‘awesome’ day?

My loathing of Monday always starts on Sunday! 

Friday night and Saturday – party central – woohoo – two days off!  Sunday dawns with a little hint of excitement – ‘phew, no work today….’ swiftly followed by a sinking feeling, ‘bugger – Monday tomorrow’!  and along with this comes the endless list of ‘things to do’ before Monday morning dawns.  So this is an even worse state of affairs!  Not only do I loathe Mondays but my disgruntlement has infected Sundays too!

There are two things intrinsically wrong with this scenario.

Firstly, the ‘phew, no work today….’ statement!  How sad is it that we spend such a large amount of time doing something we really don’t enjoy!  (for those people who do enjoy their work, you are so incredibly lucky)!  Secondly, ‘bugger – Monday tomorrow’! – what a shame Monday carries such a stigma with it!  I wonder if ‘Awesomenessday’ will convey the same ignominy.


I could always head back to ‘Reality can be Changed’ and suggest you manifest a job that you are going to enjoy and want to get up for; or take it a step further and suggest you manifest the money enough not to have to work unless you want to – something The Secret by Rhonda Byrne suggests is entirely possible.

Alternatively we could change the reality of a Monday by renaming it Awesomenessday and expect it to be awesome from start to finish.  How simple is that!

I have been doing the following practice for a number of weeks now and it is making a huge difference to my days.

When I wake up in the morning I take the time to lie there and talk to Rowan.  I say ‘hi’ and ask him what he’s been up to.  I tell him how yesterday was for me.  I tell him about all the things I am grateful for.  I tell him how my day is going to unfold.  ‘Today’s going to be amazing Rowie.  I am going to do a 15 minute meditation and I am going to be awesome at it.   I am then going to leap out of bed and my joints won’t be stiff.  I am going to take your lead and be a ‘joy germ’ to everyone I meet.  I am going to bring some happiness to as many people as I can today and when I go to bed I am going to do another meditation with awesomeness! I am then going to ask you to come into my dreams and there you will be!’  

Way back at the beginning of our journey I talked about dream or reality.  I deliberated on the ‘dream’ or ‘visitation’ when Rowie came to me at night.  I felt, even shortly after he died, that I could tell the difference between a proper visit and a dream.  With the use of crystals for lucid dreaming and recall I now know categorically that there are occasions when Rowie does come to see me and I feel an incredible surge of energy and joy when this happens.  The days following a visit are awesomeness personified – even Mondays have a magical quality about them then!


Still juggling the hot potato – negative and positive thoughts; cancel, clear, delete all bad thoughts that come into my head.  As I said a wee while ago, things became so bad a couple of months ago that I woke myself up in the middle of the night ‘sweeping’ away my negative thoughts and shouting ‘cancel, clear, delete’!  What a dream that must have been!  How sad is that?


What actually is the point of harbouring bad thoughts about other people?  I love the saying ‘bearing a grudge is like letting someone live in your head rent free’!

It has taken me nearly fifty eight years to actually realise something hugely important!  I can’t harm other people with my thoughts.  However bitter and angry I am about something or someone, thinking angry, wrathful, miserable, manic thoughts and gnashing my teeth doesn’t do my ‘enemy’ any damage whatsoever – it only causes harm to me and doesn’t change a thing…………  Or does it change something?  Perhaps it changes what I draw to myself.  Perhaps it brings more of the same; perhaps it brings me more reasons and more people to be indignant and irate about. If the law of attraction is to be believed then that is the case.  And really at the end of the day do I actually wish harm on these people – I think not.

When a situation occurs and I say to myself ‘bloody hell, not again – why me; why do things always go wrong in my life?’  Perhaps these things happen to me because I have sent out the message to the Universe that ‘things always go wrong’ in my life so they do!

I got up yesterday morning after completing a 15 minute meditation (be suitably impressed please) and started running the shower.  When I hopped in it was, to my utter horror, cool-ish, bordering on cold!  For one tiny moment the thought entered my head ‘oh no, what’s happened now?  How much is this going to cost…?’ and I stopped myself.  I stood there in the cool drizzle and said out loud ‘awesome, haven’t seen Kelly (our electrician) in ages.  It will be great to catch up with him again’!  By the time I clambered out I was feeling positively chipper albeit a little shivery and I had a great day!

I needed to find a happy thought as I said in my last post; something that I can use to shift my mood if I feel down.  Just one happy thought might not be enough though; I need a bank of them that I can access so that if the first doesn’t work I can move on to the next and so on.  My first happy thought was of that road trip down The Catlins coast with Rowie; an awesome day but not necessarily something that will revive me instantly, especially if I am down because I am missing him.

Music.  I have always enjoyed music.  I enjoy a huge range of music.  Perhaps I can tap into this when I’m feeling down.  I’m thinking that something I can sing along to might lift my spirits – another mood shifter.

I have some awesome photographs of the three most important people in my life.  I use these to make me smile.


I have a secret weapon – well three actually.   They go by the names of Obi, Jaws and Yowling!  Animals are wonderful.  They are extremely sensitive and know when I am feeling down.  They pick me up from the deepest misery.  I feel a huge amount of love for them and they repay me by being my devoted and acquiescent companions.  Rowan used to pick his cat up and declare ‘Long-Cat Yowling’ as he held him out in front of him with a hand just behind the cat’s front legs and another hand just in front of his back legs!  Yowling knew this was an expression of love and he would pad the air with his front feet in ecstasy!  This is a memory that makes me smile every time.

When I am feeling love for my three stunning men or my fine-looking furry babies the Universe is delighted with me and if the law of attraction exists then guess who is going to feel the benefits.  The greater the love I feel the more positive energy is going to head back to me.

I was only saying to Chris this afternoon that Rowan was a positive ‘joy germ’!  He infected everyone with his ‘joy germs’ and I would love to be able to do that too.

I hope that this subject doesn’t bore you but I am finding it fascinating and will keep you up-to-date just in case you too want to have a go at changing your reality.


I sounded so buoyant in my last post didn’t I?  Change your negative thoughts to positive thoughts and you can do anything; you can be anything.  ‘Change it because you can!’

Yeah right!

I went to see a friend the other day.  She is struggling with ‘positive’ at the moment just like I was, and still am on occasions.  I’m sitting there spouting all this guff about mind set – ‘you are the master of your thoughts’ I say; and then it hits me!  How the hell can you think positive thoughts when your life has been completely turned upside down by a devastating loss?  I can say it but do I really believe it?

It may be easier for those with struggles that revolve around everyday living; even though everyday living can be a bitch, rather than those caused by a death.  How can you, in circumstances like this, come up with and sustain a happy thought?  A happy thought might briefly put in an appearance but it is the sustaining that I find difficult.

I was rattling away to my long-suffering friend about the old movie ‘Hook’.  ‘Do you remember the adult Peter Pan’s happy thought that gave him the renewed ability to fly?’ I said.   It was the thought of his children – they rocked his world.  They were and always will be his happy thought.  I can relate to this.  Our children have been our world for nearly 27 years; firstly Francis came along in 1987 followed, not so swiftly, by Rowan in 1996!  They completely took over our lives and every single thought, decision and action for 27 years has been based around them in one way or another – and still is!

I have worked for most of those 27 years but I have been very fortunate to have employment that allowed me to work around the children; I usually worked autonomously and have been trusted by my employers to put in the hard yards; and I have never let them down.  Some of my positions have been based at home (computers allow this to happen nowadays) and these contracts have been amazing.   My employers got far more from me that an eight hour day because I could choose the times I worked to benefit us both.  I have been lucky enough to work for some amazing people who themselves gave family their priority.  Now, hang on a minute; have I been blessed, lucky, fortunate – or did I create these situations/employments for myself?  I certainly had the thought constantly in my head – ‘it will be awesome if I can find a job that fits in around the kids?’

As I was vocalising my thoughts to my endlessly patient and accommodating buddy, I had a wonderful memory spring out at me; one that made me laugh out loud.

Early December 2012, just before Rowie died, I took him down The Catlins coast with me to pre-enumerate my district for Census 2013.  He had finished his exams and was treading water so to speak.  The sun was shining, the sky was blue and we made an early start.  Rowie was going to make the notations for me as I spotted things along the way that needed noting.  By 10.00 o’clock we were parched and hungry.  We drove past The Niagara Café on our way to Curio Bay and decided to turn back to sample their fare!  Those who know Rowie will be very aware of his passion for chocolate milkshakes.  He decided on pancakes, bacon, banana and maple syrup swilled down with a syrupy chocolate-laden milkshake; thick, unctuous and ‘awesome’ according to the expert!  Having manfully dealt with this feast; we set off again over unsealed, dusty terrain.  He turned a strange shade of greenish-grey but heroically encouraged me onwards and upwards.  We hit Fortrose around lunchtime and he was ready for round two – fish, chips and a chocolate milkshake! 

Looking back on this day, it was absolutely perfect.  We laughed a lot; we talked non-stop; he nearly got eaten by an enormous dog in Tapanui (because ‘Rowan doesn’t share food’!) when we stopped for afternoon tea!  A tremendous day; an awesome memory for me – my happy thought!  


The Secret by Rhonda Byrne is perhaps the most famous modern advocate for this statement.  I have actually only just started reading this book although I have had it for some months now.

During the last fourteen months I have read this proclamation over and over and over again.  It is only now beginning to make sense to me.

I’ve always thought of people as either being ‘lucky’ or ‘unlucky’.  I remember my mother saying to my father ‘how come they always manage to come up smelling of roses’?  This seemed a strange thing for someone to say in my childish mind.  I have, myself, said this many times in my mature state; basically sticking out my bottom lip in a juvenile sulk!

As I have said many times in this blog, my initial intention was to be able to contact Rowan directly instead of through mediums and other channels.  I have been told many times that I am profoundly clairvoyant.  The reasons for not being able to tap into this clairvoyance are not fully understood by me or those who have faith in my abilities, but they are usually put down to some sort of emotional block that I need to clear.  This I can understand.  I have spent many, many years in a place that doesn’t really accept spirituality as a way of life and although I am now totally accepting, there may well be parts of my subconscious that are truly stuck in the old ways.

Rowan was very spiritual.  He exuded spirituality in his everyday practices, beliefs, attitudes and philosophies.  He didn’t ram these beliefs down people’s throats but he certainly lived his life, to the best of his sixteen year olds ability, within these principles.  He was fascinated with the Samurai Code of Honour and had tried to live within those values (strength, respect, loyalty and honour unto death) since he was around twelve.

Every thought that we allow into our head is creating our future.  This takes us back to the ‘affirmation’ game and the ‘gratitude’ game that we have played en route!  We can take that a step further and say ‘we create every illness in our body’.  Resentment, anger, critical behaviour and guilt can be hugely damaging to the subconscious.  This is because these feelings make us dislike ourselves; they encourage self-loathing and misery, a feeling of ‘not being good enough’ and that is when illness find it easy to creep in.  That is when we allow sickness to enter our bodies unconsciously.

We need to try to release our resentment.  We need to work hard at releasing past anger and invite forgiveness into our lives.  This, of course, goes back to my hero, His Holiness The Dalai Lama’s recipe for happiness; love, compassion and forgiveness!  We need to be able to love ourselves.  I have to admit that my experiment of looking in the mirror every day and saying ‘I love you’ didn’t really give me the shift I was hoping for!  I never quite got over the embarrassment of saying this out loud and more often than not muttered unkind things to myself afterwards as I walked away from the mirror!  Having said that I think self-love is important and something I am going to have to keep working at.  Self-approval and self-acceptance are the keys to positive changes in our lives.  If I can begin to love myself that is when I hope things will begin to change for the better.

So, if this is correct, our subconscious mind agrees with whatever we choose to believe.  Whatever we choose to think about ourselves and about our lives become true.  The beauty of this is that we have unlimited choices about what we want to think – our Creator gave us freedom of choice!  If we choose to think that the world is conspiring against us then it probably will.  If we choose to think that the world is a wonderful place and that we are surrounded by helpful, loving people then, odds are, we will find this to be the case.

All the events that we have experienced so far in our lives have been created by the thoughts and beliefs that we were brought up with.  These events were created by the thoughts and words that we had and said over the last however many years we have been alive.  That is our past.  Any thoughts and beliefs we create from now on are our future – so life isn’t hopeless. Our power is in the present moment and that is what will manifest our tomorrow, our next week, our next month, our next year.

Just take a note of your thoughts as you have just finished reading this – are they positive or negative?  Do you want this thought to have the potential to create your future……..?  If not, change it because you can!