Life, Death and Spirituality

Month: September, 2014


In the past I have been very susceptible to people who carry negative energy – I could be happy and full of excited anticipation for the day and then crash just as quickly when someone dealt out negativity. I am learning to cope with this. In times gone by when this happened I would descend into gloom and the hours would get progressively worse as negative energy filled the remainder of the day before I slept again!

I am not saying avoid people who have worries or problems – these folks we can and should help. I am perfectly happy providing a shoulder to cry on or lending an ear to people who want to off-load their troubles or anxieties. I will help anyone who has a desire to help themselves. I will help anyone who is struggling to see light. The people we need to avoid are the ones who are grouchy and cantankerous; the ones who wake up with a crabby attitude who have no intention whatsoever of releasing it. They hang on to that snappish and petulant behaviour like a dog holds on to a bone and they enjoy taking everyone around them down too. They have the sort of ‘if I’m not happy then I’m sure not going to let you be happy either’ type mind-set!

If you are happy in your own skin; resilient and strong, then taking on these people can prove to be a positive experience for both them and you but if you are struggling to keep your own head above water, these are the people you need to steer clear of.

After Rowan died I struggled so hard to keep my own head out of the mire and those of Francis,Chris and Maree that taking on anyone else’s problems just wasn’t an option and most people understood this and were just there when we needed them. The hardest ones to deal with though were the negative souls who thought it wrong to smile and joke around us because we were ‘grieving’. They would adopt a sombre, grumpy demeanour whenever they saw us or they got a fixed looked on their faces and sped up as they came towards us hoping not to have to talk! If they did talk they complained voraciously about anything and everything just to prove that their lives were no better than ours!

We needed light and laughter. We needed warmth and fun and humour.

When I meet a grumpy soul now like this I look at them and feel sad for them. They are oblivious to the fact that their day is only going to get worse unless they snap out of their misery. Self-pity is one of the worst states of mind you can enter in to. It is terribly hard to see a positive way out of self-pity and can lead to long-term depression. I know from experience that the longer you hold on to self-pity the deeper and deeper you sink into misery and self-loathing.

Another very dangerous game to play is the ‘blame game’.

The ‘blame game’ is played with a frame of mind that likes to blame everyone else for the bad things that happen in your life. As you play this game you become angrier and more bitter as the days go by. You retreat into yourself and look at everyone else with hostility. The truth is, as you allow yourself to blame others for your unhappiness, you are cultivating a ‘victim-type’ consciousness that won’t allow you any happiness; it will just consume every spark of light you have left in you. This in turn will drive people away from you. Those that started by feeling deeply sorry for you and who cared for you will be driven away by your misery and anger and you will eventually find yourself alone.

It’s not easy to turn yourself around. I know that from experience. But turn yourself around you must if you intend to come out of the tunnel at the other end. To lose someone in whatever way is heart-breaking but you have to face the loss, look on it as a way to grow spiritually and emotional – a soul lesson, a life lesson. Don’t blame yourself or others for this. Treat it as a catalyst to grow and help others along the way. Remember His Holiness The Dalai Lama; love, compassion, forgiveness!



Since I made the decision to write a book I have been suffering from writer’s block! It appeared to me that maybe the Universe was telling me that the time wasn’t right!

Last week I visited my awesome friend out at The Nuggets who gave me a healing session. She uses sound and energy to heal and I had the most amazing time with her. She had invited Rowan to join us and I know that he was there. She made me feel so very much better about myself – maybe the Universe wasn’t saying that after all – maybe I just needed to rest a while and concentrate on other things. She gave me an incredible crystal, Que Sera, which has an astonishing energy and power – as I have discussed before, the power of crystals always astounds me.

A very beautiful and spiritual friend of mine (both inside and out) sent me a message last night. She said that Rowan had been to visit her again! He has been to see her twice now. When she first told me, a couple of months ago, that he had been to see her I found it strange because he didn’t actually know her whilst he was here – she is one of the awesome people I have met since he passed over. He has obviously watched our friendship grow and is showing us both that he approves!

On this visit he was accompanied by a young lady who he knows who passed over earlier this year; a young lady who my friend knows very well. She explained that she was feeling very sad and that this young and beautiful soul came to see her. This young soul looked over at someone and my friend saw Rowan, wearing a bright yellow shirt (his young friend’s favourite colour). Rowan then moved over to his friend and placed his hand upon her shoulder. She then gave my friend a message for her family. They are well and happy as far as she could tell.

I love hearing things like this. To me this is saying that when we pass over we still have the freedom of choice that our Creator gives us when we incarnate into this world. Rowan and his friend obviously choose to spend time together and this is awesome. I get great comfort from the fact that he has people around him now who he knew when he was here and that they get to spend quality time together. I feel sad for those of us left behind but great happiness in thinking about them and the possibilities for them where they are. The beauty about their existence on the next plane is that there is no pain, no illness, no sadness – only happiness and unconditional love – and they get to use these wonderful, spiritual people around us to pass their messages on.

Rowan has been joined by another friend over the last few weeks – one of his peers who shared a lot of time with him on this side and I am sure they will be playing catch-up now. I feel assured that Rowan is helping him to adjust to his new surroundings and is helping him through his healing process.

If you happen to lose someone close to you, be open to receive the signs that your loved ones send to you. Rest assured that they will send signs; you just have to be open to receiving them. I have been amazed by the willpower of spirit to get their messages through to us. They try to provide us with comfort in as many ways as they can. They tell us that they are still around. We just need to open ourselves up to receive these communications. You can offer them chances to communicate by sitting quietly and asking them questions in your head. Listen for their replies. Ask for signs; ask for rainbows, butterflies, birds – you chose something; and ask your departed loved ones to show them to you. You will be surprised by their ability to do this on request!


The night after his death Rowan was returned to Balclutha. Chris and Francis went to formally identify him. They walked into the Chapel of Rest and their first sighting of Rowie was the back of his head – with that moment they both knew the terrible sinking feeling that every single little hope, however ridiculous, of him still being alive had just flown out the window. His hair, all ruffled and sticking up as it always did was completely recognisable, even from 5 metres away. Francis described that moment some weeks later to me and the picture is indelibly printed in my mind.

So many pictures are indelibly imprinted in my head. These pictures come to me when I least expect them and send me into a bit of a spin again. I don’t get the shortness of breath and panic fight or flight reaction that used to accompany these pictures any more. I am learning to deal with them. I have trained myself to move on rapidly from these to happier pictures; ones of him laughing at some bizarre YouTube video; some cat antics that he had come across.

His sense of humour was keen, intense, stimulating. It was extremely difficult not to react to his sense of fun – his amusement and happiness were infectious. At times he knew that it was inappropriate to bubble up with delight but found it very difficult to check his merriment and however cross you were a moment before, you found yourself cracking and the same sense of hilarity overtaking you.

He was a good mimic and the stories he told were punctuated with lively impersonations of those involved in the revelry. He found bizarre songs to sing at me! He found strange musical pieces on YouTube that he danced along to with great enthusiasm and comic skill.

He was charming. He could charm the birds from the trees! On waking from a post-operative anaesthetic his nurse introduced herself to him in the recovery room; he sat bolt upright in bed and held out his hand to shake hers! She was hugely amused by this and told me that in all her years of nursing she had never been charmed quite so much by anyone!

I’m not entirely sure but I think I can probably say without being corrected that he was never deliberately rude to anyone. He could relate to all age groups with ease and enjoyed mixing with older people as much as with his peers.

Maybe twenty months down the track my perceptions have been tainted – but looking at him from here, he was pretty awesome!

For a youngster he had a pretty amazing understanding of how others were feeling; an intuition that was pretty remarkable for one so young. He could sense when I had self-doubt. He interpreted his father’s moods for me and explained them with mindboggling accuracy! He hurt for Francis – whenever he saw people taking Francis for granted or being critical of his big brother he would hurt hard enough for the both of them! He had an attuned eye for the ‘lame dog’ and brought them home time and time again.

‘How can we forget someone who gave us so much to remember’?

Aimee is doing the 10 day Spirit of New Zealand trip early next year. She has to fly up to Auckland by herself and get from the airport in Auckland to the dock.

Reading this reminded me of Rowie’s journey. I put him on the plane in Dunedin; had a quick text conversation with him in Christchurch before he got the connecting flight to Auckland. Had an even quicker text conversation when he arrived in Auckland; caught up with him as he got to the dock, had a frantic text from him 10 minutes later to say ‘Bye, they taking my phone now’! Arghh!! I remember posting on Facebook :

Have I had my left leg cut off? No, just lost my youngest son for 10 days to The Spirit of Adventure Sailing Boat!! How will I survive without him?’

Well Rowie, on 26 December 2012, some four months later, I lost all four limbs and my heart broke in two as you disappeared out of reach for an eternity. I have survived without you. Chris and Francis have survived too. Our lives are all the richer for having known you my beautiful buddy.