Ernie Jackson

Ernie Jackson

Tuesday, 20 February 2018 12:51

Sharing and Fellowship

On this difficult journey we find ourselves on, it is important to share our experiences and emotions.  In doing so we create fellowship that may help us begin to or continue to heal.  While there is no, “getting back to normal”, we can create a new normal that may actually include joy.

After Quinton transitioned and began sending signs that even I could recognize, literally, nobody could keep me from sharing those signs.  One of the most amazing results of my sharing was people would share their experiences with signs from their loved ones; this is the fellowship that I refer to.  An excellent example of this was as I shared with an office manager in a building I used to manage. She broke down and shared how her Mom came to her after she transitioned.  She had tried to tell her Dad those many years ago, but he had shut her down by telling her it wasn’t possible her Mom came to her and held her hand.  As I stood there before her, she thanked me for proving to her that she was not “crazy” and that she experienced really happened, because her experiences were very similar to mine.  This scene played out time and time again over the years since our son crossed the threshold. 

I did share something recently of Facebook and was amazed at the reaction.  What I shared related to my oldest grandson and I shared it because I have read numerous times that children see spirits.  As James Van Praagh said in an interview with Amelia Leigh on June 3, 2017, “Most children are very psychic. They just came from the other side and their mindset is of that dimension.”  Mr. Van Praagh shares this simple fact in most of his books.  Now that I have this knowledge that children see spirit more readily than we do, with grandchildren in the house, I have been looking for evidence.

I wrote on February 10th, 2018, “Would it surprise you to know that my grandson saw my son yesterday?  I am not.  At the tender age of four, children’s perception is better than most adults.  They have no dis-belief to combat, they just tell it like it is.  He saw Quinton by the front door, just looking at him.  I have read about this time and time again, been waiting for it to happen.  Good Morning!  Know There is More.”  I shared because this is amazing, beautiful and divine.  I shared out of a belief that in knowing, I have an obligation to share.  The responses speak to my point; in sharing, we invite others to share with us; and this fellowship between us is epitomizes Love and the Divine.  Here are just a few of the responses:

  • “Not at all.My 7 month old grandson laughs and follows something in the room.My daughter swears it is her brother.Then I had a reading with a medium and she said ‘Sean is hanging out with his nephew when he is in his crib.He has 1 dimple on the right side of his cheek.’He does!’
  • “I love this!My Mom comes to me in my dreams…”
  • “My grandson used to see my son!I LOVE this post!!!”
  • “My granddaughter Meeka sees her Uncle Devin DJ; she is my lifeline to him.”
  • “When the extraordinary becomes reality, we are changed forever.I love this for all of you, Ernie!”
  • “When my mother died, we brought some things from her house and put them in our dining room.I would see shadows of her in that room, but my grandchild, who was 7 months old at the time, sat in his bouncy chair and carried on conversations with her.He was looking up and baby babbling. Then he’d be quiet, listening, and then baby babble again.It went on for quite some time.I loved it.”
  • “That is sooooo beautiful!My little grandson saw Jon so many times!He is almost 5 now and I guess he is getting more integrated on ‘this side’ so his sightings have become less and less… I will miss hearing him tell his Jon-Jon stories!”
  • “My grandson saws my son on several occasions as well.The younger they are, the more accepting they are of the things that they see and feel.”

I hope you are as filled with love, gratitude and appreciation for all – as I am over this exchange.  We are connected in the most Divine ways!  All we have to do, is have the courage to share, even the pain.  Share it all, with those who understand.   www.helpingparentsheal.org

Blessings!

Tuesday, 13 February 2018 14:16

Happy

Driving, driving, driving….  Why do I enjoy it so?  Getting in the zone, appreciating this beautiful planet that Divine created for us, and sometimes it is about going deeper.  In this new birth, one of my intentions is to drill down deeper, in every aspect of my life.  And with that said, I heard a song, seemingly for the first time.  It was Happy by Pharrell Williams.

The music was already loud, but I turned it up even louder.  I have heard this song dozens of times, but this time was different. This time I heard something different and on a different level.  I know the chorus and I think most of us do:

“Because I’m happy

Clap along if you feel like a room without a roof

Because I’m happy

Clap along if you feel like happiness is the truth

Because I’m happy

Clap along if you know what happiness is to you

Because I’m happy

Clap along if you feel like that’s what you wanna do.”

It was the second and third versus that spoke to me on a deeper level.  In that deeper level resides the lessons that Quinton showed us; on that deeper level we know pain, shock and despair and from that deeper level we came to share love, knowledge and to be of service.  It is from this level I heard these words for, seemingly the first time:

“Here comes bad news, talking this and that (Yeah!)

Well, give me all you got, don’t hold it back (Yeah!)

Well, I should probably warn ya, I’ll be just fine (Yeah!)

No offense to you, don’t waste your time.

Here’s why…”

The third verse was even more impactful. As the song played I turned it up even louder in an attempt to catch this verse as it came around again, trying to hear it, trying to understand.  What I heard was profound as it speaks to the adversity we face, across lifetimes.  What I heard speaks to the trials and tribulations that are the experiences we learn from:

“(Happy)

Bring me down

Can’t nothing

Bring me down

My level’s too high

Bring me down

Can’t nothing

Bring me down

I said (let me tell you now)”

And then it repeats

This resonated with me.  I have been down more times than you might realize.  Through the trials, I have struggled and endured.  I have struggled with real adversity and adversity born from the stories made up in my mind.  And I am still here, standing, serving and still having moments of sheer joy.  And so it will continue.

Can’t nothing bring me down; not again.  My level’s too high; I won’t allow myself to go back to that dark place.

And I wish the same for you.

Tuesday, 13 February 2018 14:07

Gratitude and Connections

As these days turn into weeks, I find myself overcome with a sense of gratitude and it all starts with Quinton.  Quinton showed me that there is no death; he showed me that he continues and therefore I understand I will continue as well when I shed my suit of flesh and go home.  What has that got to do with gratitude you might ask.  Well it is this knowledge that has resulted with me looking at my life here in a different light.  And in this different light, I am grateful for my own spiritual growth that even I am noticing.

I knew when I changed careers and became a Realtor with Berkshire Hathaway in Arizona and Colorado, that I was starting a new life.  A new life, but in the same body.  In this new life, my intent was to focus on my growth, for however long I have.  Before I needed to accomplish and needed to excel to feel good about myself.  After a while it wasn’t enough because I was not in the moment; I was always looking into the future.  It is with gratitude that more frequently I find myself in the moment, and in this place I begin to recognize and acknowledge life’s little miracles and the connections we have.

The key here is, typically in these moments I am in motion.  Maybe we have to be in motion; maybe it is only I that has to be in motion for the magic to happen.  In any case, it doesn’t happen when I sit in the house – it only happens when I am out.  Being on the computer, trying to acquaint myself with programs, reading or writing isn’t where it happens.  I remember reading in a Michael Newton book (either Journey of Souls or Destiny of Souls) that more advanced souls tend to gravitate to and live in cities, or surroundings were there are a lot of people.  This kind of annoyed me because my default is to run away from people, into the hills, into the country side; I must not be very evolved after all I surmised, but grudgingly I have to admit that those connections that provide me with goosebumps of gratitude usually happen when I am with others.

Some examples of what I am trying to say are as follows:

  • In the midst of trying to close a deal I was tasked with finding a quality residential structural engineer.I took a breath, started searching and made two calls and connected with one of the most amazing resources.They came to the subject property the next day.During the course of this conversation, I had goosebumps of gratitude and was floating on cloud nine.
  • I am working on a deal now, it is actually a commercial deal to help a friend buy an office condo.My gratitude stems from having enough commercial knowledge to be of service, while being secure enough in myself and in the moment enough to find my way through the murky areas that I am not clear on.I am grateful that I can navigate the process for my client, to her benefit.
  • I have been to the building department twice in Jefferson County, Colorado on the behalf of a client.This is all foreign to me, but instead of going in trying to pretend I know what I am doing, I go in hat in hand.An eager student looking for answers; when I connect with multiple people eager to help me, I am filled with gratitude.
  • Being able to help clients move.And while they may be clients, now they are friends.The sense of gratitude coming from them is incredible.There is nothing better than helping another; absolutely nothing.

You see, for the moment any way, this excursion isn’t about the end result.  It is about the journey; it is about the process – moment by moment, day by day.  And this is a gift.  If I die today, I can actually say – Mission Accomplished!  Am I there yet, to wherever there is?  No, but I can be satisfied with my progress.  Or maybe I can be satisfied that I am back to being true.  I suspect, that was the point of Quinton’s recent dream visit that I wrote about a while back.

These moments of gratitude and connectedness don’t just happen while trying to be of service.  Sometimes they happen when I am in a zone, trying to hang on and when it seems my own vibe is more readily apparent:

  • Stopping in a gas station in Pagosa Springs, Colorado (a town that I am connected to in some way), at about 8:00 in the evening after a long day to top off the tank of Q’s truck and get some coffee because I am considering driving straight through, another eight hours to get home.And in this place I am connected with the convenience store attendant; somehow we are family and we wish each other well.More gratitude.
  • On that same night, being smart and listening, I stopped to get some rest on Cortez, Colorado.As I checked in to the Best Western, the woman at the desk proudly told me about their breakfast in the morning, starting at 6:00 in the morning.After letting her know I would be gone by then, she told me to come by and they would have a breakfast bag to go for me.When I walked in to check out at 4:45 a.m., that same woman provided me with a bag to go.My heart soared; more gratitude!

And there is more.  The phone calls from friends and acquaintances, asking for guidance and support for those in need.  And again, it isn’t about the end result, but the moment.  And in that moment the feeling of gratitude is immense and the sense of interconnectedness encompasses all.

There is Only Love,

Namaste

Friday, 19 January 2018 20:22

The Traveling Man

The traveling man left Peoria long before sunrise.  By the time he made it to where Highway 160 turned north, five miles from the Four Corners Monument and six miles from where his son transitioned, it was approximately 8:00 a.m.  The sun was now up and it was a cold twenty-three degrees outside.  As the man made the turn he saw two figures standing alongside the road, almost in the exact same spot they last pulled over eight and one-half years ago to adjust the jet skis on the trailer.  The couple standing there saw the truck make the turn and wondered if it would stop and give them a ride.

They didn’t raise their thumbs until he was close.  The man was watching them and hadn’t picked up a hitchhiker for years, and had never picked up two at one time, but he stopped, backed up and then unlocked the doors.  When they opened the doors, the man asked where they were going to which the gentleman said, Towaoc.  The traveling man knew the town.  The first responders to the accident came from the station located there and a few years afterward he had spoken with them there.

The woman sat in the back seat and the man sat in the front.  His name was Eric and he was upbeat and positive; he had a good and strong energy about him.  The traveling man asked him what was going on in Towaoc and he responded that he had an orientation for a new job he had just landed.  Given the proximity to the accident site, the traveling man mentioned the memorial, the accident that claimed Quinton’s life years prior and even some of signs from his son.  And then the conversation began in earnest.

The Eric’s father had transitioned a scant one month prior.  Naturally the traveling man asked if he had received any signs yet or if his Dad had visited him in his dreams.  He indicated he hadn’t but that he could hear his Dad’s words in his head, encouraging him to get up and go to the orientation even though it was cold out.  He spoke of his Dad’s conversation with him two weeks prior to his transition, telling him that while it was his time to go, he (Eric) had to stay. 

The hitchhiker was no stranger to death; his baby sister had transitioned when she was just three month old.  It broke his Mom’s heart.  She was so sad, he explained.  She often spoke of wishing she could see her, and be with her again.  He shared that one morning  years ago, his Mom wouldn’t wake up.  She slept for so long that he and his Dad were about to call for paramedics, when suddenly she woke up.  She was happy and excited, and had something to tell them.  She had gone to heaven and saw her daughter.  She said her daughter was alive and well, and went on to describe the surroundings as “bright and misty”.

The traveling man and Eric really hit it off as they both discussed the fact that we are eternal and our lives here have purpose.  The traveling man encouraged Eric to be an example for his people, to be a bright light and not to fret if he ever stumbles.  None of us are perfect; just get up, forgive yourself and keep being a role model.  The world today desperately needs role models.

Eric told the man that he never would have thought he would meet a man like him that morning.  He shared that he had stood at Quinton’s Memorial just a few weeks prior and thought, “this is some man’s son.”  He continued by saying, “And here you are.”  The traveling man provided him with two business cards, one for Arizona and another for Colorado and told him, “Call me if you need to talk with me.”  Then he dropped them off at their destination and continued with his drive.

The world is a funny place as it quite effectively separates us by race, color, nationality, sexuality and sex; by the haves and have nots.  This is not reality.  The truth of the matter is, we are tied to one another, if we go deep enough, if we care enough; we are all one, linked to one another by an absolute Love.  All we need do is get out of our own way and begin to see through the stories that we allow to separate us.

Namaste

Wednesday, 17 January 2018 09:48

Another Dream Visit – It is about the Clarity

I remember the premonition and I remember the first dream visit.  Both vivid, crystal clear and like real life.  These descriptors are important, because there is a huge difference between a dream (typically blurry and immediately forgotten) and a visit.  A dream visit can have additional differences as it relates to emotional content as well, as Quinton’s recent visit illustrates.

It has been eight and one-half years since Quinton transitioned.  As Joe and Ann Kecter whose son Matthew transitioned during the Columbine tragedy almost a full eight months prior to Quinton’s birth told Kristine and I, as time passes often the frequency of visits decrease.  While this is not a hard and fast rule because some don’t even begin to receive signs and visits for years, even a decade or more after the transition of a loved one, it has held true for us.  It is as if, Quinton’s visits have decreased because he knows we are doing great and that we get it.

On the evening of January 2nd and there wasn’t anything special or different with the way I fell asleep.  I have been dreaming more than usual of late, but this was different.  All of a sudden I found myself standing outside an aggregate building on a bright sunny day.  It actually reminded me of the gymnasium at West Jefferson elementary in Conifer Colorado.  Very quickly I heard footsteps inside the structure; the footfalls passed a door that I found myself standing by, went silent as Quinton went airborne and then landed.  He was doing a running long jump.

I don’t know how I knew it was Quinton, but I knew.  I quickly opened the door and went inside.  Immediately Quinton and I embraced, and fell to our knees.  We just held each other; I was crying.  While Quinton never said anything and actually, I didn’t even see him – I knew it was him.  I was happy and excited to be with him.  As I cried, I said, “I will never leave you again.”  That surprised me and on some level, I still don’t really know what I meant.  On another level, I think I know exactly what it meant.

Funny thing about signs and dream visits; they are meant for the individual and while the individual understands their validity completely, others may not.  This is the reason, so many don’t share these signs or visits.  In the above dream visit and the others I had, another descriptor is the word – clarity.  These visits have a clarity like no other.

If you have had an experience like this, I invite you to reexamine it.  Because of the clarity of the experience, it isn’t forgotten as a normal dream.  Replay it in your mind, celebrate it because it is your loved one making contact.  The length of visit matters not, it can be just a flash – a vivid snap shot of your loved one looking at you with a huge smile!  (I didn’t make that up – this was how a friend of mine’s husband demonstrated to her that he was ok and fine on the other side).

Know there is more and celebrate this fact.  And research as well – there are hundreds of books written on the subject.

Blessings!

Sunday, 07 January 2018 21:57

A Chance Encounter

He is middle aged now and starting to wear down.  It didn’t help that he had caught a cold, like everybody else in the house.  He had showered, but didn’t bother shaving; he had some errands to run.  After throwing on a pair of sweats and a red shirt that said “Here and Now”, he left.  First he had to stop to buy some lottery tickets and then to the supermarket for cold remedies and other provisions for the family.

Pulling up to the Circle K, his attention was immediately drawn to two elderly women, one in a wheel chair and the other standing beside her.  Both were unkempt, he noticed as his attention never wavered.  After entering the store the man stood aside the back of the line, watching.  Suddenly he said, “May I get the door for you?”  The woman in the wheel chair indicated that they weren’t quite finished yet, but the man persisted.  “Well, let me know when you are ready.  Not only will I open the door, but I will hold it for you too,” as he smiled broadly.

The line was diminishing quickly.  As the man neared the counter, the other woman said, “You are handsome.”   The man said, “Thank You,” and smiled.  Next she said, “You are sweet too.”  The man smiled gently and replied, “Thank you; so are you.”  Now the man was at the counter.  The attendant named Matt, asked how he could help him.  The man handed over a lottery ticket for Matt to check to see if it was a winner.

As Matt checked, the standing woman said, “I like your cross.”  The man didn’t even know it had come out from behind his red shirt.  The man again thanked her and then proceeded to explain the link between the cross and his transitioned son, Quinton, who eight and one-half years had crossed over. The woman in the wheel chair expressed her condolences; the man acknowledged them and then proceed to tell them his son had very quickly began visiting from the other side, and that he had written books explaining both the cross and his son’s visits.

The man handed the standing woman a card, meanwhile apparently everybody in earshot was listening.  Matt announced that he had won $12, to which the man handed him his two lottery cards and some more cash to cover the difference.  When Matt handed him the purchased lottery tickets the man, still smiling said, “When I win, you will see me again.”  Matt smiled and said, “I hope so.”  The elderly women, one in a wheel chair and the other standing, where still there talking amongst themselves and taking the scene in.  The woman who was standing attempted to return the card, but man told her to keep it; it was for her.

As the man prepared to leave a younger woman spoke to him and immediately proceeded to share that she had been run over by a car, twice.  She had been listening when the man spoke of the accident that nearly killed his wife and caused his son to transition.  She proceeded to show him a well healed scar beginning at the bottom of her neck and traveling down, and then she pulled up her shirt and showed that the scar continued all the way down to her belly button.  The man looked at her in her eyes and told her twice, “You are so very strong.”  And then he asked, “May I hug you?”  She said yes and the man hugged her firmly, wished her well.  As he walked out the women he spoke with bid him well and he did the same.  While he walked out, a man whom he had not spoken with called him “Brother” and wished him well too.  Yet another man wished him well.

As the man climbed into the car, he looked up and saw the woman who had been run over twice by the same car waving to him enthusiastically and smiling broadly. The man also waved enthusiastically and matched her smile with his own, then he gave her a thumbs up to signify that he honored her courage and her strength along her journey.  She fumbled briefly with her oversized jacket and gave him a thumbs up too.

The man drove away and marveled at what had just happened.  His spirits were lifted and he knew that at least six people in the Circle K felt their own spirits lifted.  All of us were strangers to one another, but somehow we were all connected in that moment.  And quite possibly, each of us is changed forever.

And so it is…

Sunday, 07 January 2018 21:46

Jaime Clark in Tucson

The year is nearly over which is hard to believe.  While our home is in Peoria Arizona, we have spent five months in Colorado.  We travel so many times back and forth between the two states that sometimes I truly don’t know where I am. 

For the weekend of November 18th, we were in Tucson.  On Saturday we met with Elizabeth Boisson and Irene Vouvalides to be interviewed for a program with 'Open to Hope Television.'  Since we knew we would be in Tucson, we stayed over to video record renowned medium Jaime Clark who would be at the Helping Parent’s Heal Tucson meeting on Sunday.

I like recording video for these meetings, not that I have any special abilities.  Since I speak on occasion and am recorded myself, I do so with the speaker in mind.  Where to put the camera and how far to zoom in are most important to me. 

Kristine and I go to these meetings to help and lend some positive energy.  It has been eight and one-half years since Quinton transitioned; we have had so many amazing readings and signs, but we don’t expect any more – readings.  In fact, I basically feel bad for anybody who Quinton contacts to get us a sign because we are still pretty public about what is going on in our lives; it would be a challenge to send us something that wasn’t already out there.  With that said, Quinton had a nice little surprise for all of us, even Jaime.

The recording of Jaime Clark presenting is divided up into parts one and two.  Part one is one hour and thirty-two minutes and part two is eleven minutes. Sitting directly in front of us was a gentleman named Dave Willsey, so when Jaime looked at Dave, it looked like he was looking at me. At about one hour and fifteen minutes into part one, Dave was up.  For about seven minutes Jaime looked at Dave and shared information that resonated with him.  This went on for the better part of six minutes or so.  Dave was clearly touched.  Then something changed.

Jaime told Dave he had the impression him having two careers and being multi-faceted. Jaime continued by mentioning that Dave was into cars, collecting cars, old cars.  Dave shook his head to the negative barely perceptively, but I saw it because I was behind him.  Next Jaime mentioned that Dave may have gone to school for one thing and then changed it.  Jaime continued by saying your Dad says Thank You for Helping – He really needs to say Thank you.  Jaime finished by saying “you need to know that you are appreciated – Be open for a kind word because you are always helping others.”

I didn’t interrupt; I didn’t want to break the connection that they had, but everything he said above resonated with me.  From the two careers, being multi-faceted, cars, to changing my major in school, Dad saying Thank you and even the direction to be more open for a kind word.  When I spoke with Dave afterwards, I told him I had a “me too”, but he said that section wasn’t for him.  It was for me, but Jaime didn’t appear to be aware.

Over the past couple of months, on those rare occasions when home in Arizona, I have begun to purge or maybe better put, downsize.  We and I have too much stuff.  I have started going through books, cd’s, movies and clothes.  Come November, I had more time and even opened up a trunk designated “Quinton’s stuff” I had been putting this off for some time now.  Inside the trunk were several model cars that I had built over the years and was saving for our son.  Nobody knows that I started building model cars at the age of seven, back in New Jersey and continued when my parents moved us to Colorado.  Nobody knows that I had a collection of them.  I had just opened the trunk and looked at those models prior to heading to Tucson.

When I spoke to Jaime afterwards, I mentioned the “me too”, specifically the cars.  He looked puzzled and said, almost under his breath, “I didn’t know that”.  And how could he, other than his connection was true, strong and accurate!  I am always surprised and grateful when an amazing and talented medium like Jaime (and others) tap into something that nobody has ever tapped into about us before.  This takes an amazing talent; an amazing gift.

Thank you Jaime for the “me too”, that was actually mostly me!  As you did turn your attention to me you nailed the islands reference; it seems I had better stop talking about Hawaii and plan a trip!

Quinton’s Dad

Sunday, 26 November 2017 20:07

SHARING LOVE THIS HOLIDAY SEASON

The Holidays are upon us and it is difficult at best, to be joyful for so many of us in this family of parents who have a child on the Other Side. But we are not the only ones on the planet, this school called Earth, who are in pain.  There is pain and suffering everywhere, as the news is sure to point out. 

I abhor the word “choice”, like we have a choice to be melancholy or not to be melancholy. It goes beyond choosing.  Our pain and grief must be felt, processed and maybe even burned away in fits of rage, tears and exertion.  And this comes in its own time.  There is no right or wrong way to grieve and it isn’t a race to get through it.  We know, don’t we?  But at some point, I implore you to take a chance and re-engage with the world.  For our benefit, yes, but also because the world needs us and our perspective that life is eternal because our kids have shown this to be.

What brings this on, you might ask. The Holidays for sure but also because of how I feel when I engage, not that I engage all the time.  I carry my burden as do many of you, and I honor it by not faking engagement. Too often still, I closet myself away but when I step out and interact in a meaningful way - when moved or even called to do so, typically I get more in return.

Naturally, doing so involves people. When Quinton transitioned I flatly said, “Don’t leave me alone” to those who came to our aid.  Now I tell myself, burn brighter and engage more because sometimes (even for me) it is easier to withdraw.  Interacting with the world is why I work now as a Realtor why I coach, write and speak. 

What brings this on, you might ask. Well it is when I speak to the young men on the football team.  Rarely do I talk to them about the X’s and O’s of the game; it is when I speak to them about the adversity they face and work through, there is a silver lining; being the best they can be; standing up for and protecting their brother / sister on the field of life; to be not only leaders, but leaders in doing what is right and good; to know they are held to a higher standard.  To share all of this and more, then to hear, “I feel you coach” or “Thank you Coach, I love you.”  I come to them in a spirit of Love as they were my own son (Quinton).  I come gently but serious and they respond accordingly.

Another example of the benefits of being involved and engaged with life and others is naturally with our grandchildren. To be more present with them than with our own children is in a way the definition of being a grandparent. Just being with them, present with them is a gift of love (both giving and receiving) that is a perfect example of what is available to us all – just by being engaged with others by sharing.  To have them come to us and cuddle; to hold them; to hear them say “I want to be with Grandpa” touches me so very deeply – beyond words which is my point.

It is said that our emotions guide us and point the way to how our hearts and souls want us to live. Turning away from love and turning our emotions off (oh, I am quite good at this) does us immeasurable harm.  So, get out there this holiday season and take a chance.  Share some love, even if it is a genuine and heart felt “Hi” to a stranger.  Hold somebody’s hand who is hurting and be there to listen.  With what we collectively have been through, doing so means more to the one on the receiving end than you may realize.  And don’t be surprised when you feel your heart smiling.

Enjoy the Holiday season my dear friends and fellow travelers.

Christmas 2008

Sunday, 26 November 2017 19:17

This Ties Us Together

Our Lyft ride was right on time.  The driver jumped out of his vehicle as we emerged from our home.  He was upbeat, positive and there was something more.  As we loaded our luggage and then loaded ourselves, we connected energetically.  There was something familiar about that energy as we went back and forth rapid fire, so much so that I asked him where he was from.  He was from New Jersey, Mike Nieves is his name.  I laughed out loud and let him know that was from New Jersey as well.

Our conversation became even more animated.  It made sense to both of us that two Jersey boys could connect so strongly, but we had another tie.  At some point in the conversation I introduced Mike to Quinton, Quinton’s visits and our journey since our son transitioned.  At this point Mike introduced us to his son, Miguel Angel Nieves III.  Miguel transitioned on March 31, 2005 and as Mike explained, “that was the day his Earth stood still.”

He went on to explain the pain he experienced; he said it was the hardest thing he had ever had to do, to claim his son’s body and to lay him to rest.  And we know this, all of us do.  But this isn’t the tie that I am referring to.  He went on to share that after two weeks he was going stir crazy and decided to go back to work, hoping the busyness would help him to process and move with his grief.  On the night before going back to work he had a visit.

That night, about 3:30 or 4:00 in the morning he found himself in his living room, talking to his son.  He continued by sharing as we spoke during the drive to the airport that he was not only talking to his son, he was smelling him and he was holding him; he was feeling him!  And then his son, Miguel spoke to him and said, “Dad, I am in a much better place right now.”  Mike continued by saying that moment, two weeks after his son transitioned, was the beginning of his healing.  This wasn’t an isolated incident either.

In those moments when his temper was about to get the best on him or something was bothering him, his son would whisper in his ear, “Dad, it’s going to be okay and just relax.”  Mike describes hearing his son on the Other Side whisper those words in his ear is the most soothing thing, giving him a mellowness and a sense of peace.  This is the tie that binds Mike and me.  Here we are, two strangers in a car, connecting on a deep spiritual basis because in part anyway, a shared experience with our son’s on the Other Side, making themselves known to us.  These visits demonstrate that there is no death, that we are eternal.

As we discussed our shared experiences, he had a message for you (yes, You).  While acknowledging our (all of us) shared pain, he implores us to live every day to the fullest and do so to honor our children.  He went on to say, “On day you will be together again, but until then, enjoy your life and do something good in your transitioned child’s name every day.”

Such sage and poignant advice from a fellow parent with a child on the Other Side.  He burns bright, sharing love – and now you know why.  He implores us to do the same; take the opportunity to share and be of service to others walking this path we know so well.

Blessings

Ernie and Kristine

PS - Mike and I stay in contact now, and he even sent an audio file to help me better remember the points of our conversation.

Ernie Miguel

Friday, 27 October 2017 10:11

Quinton's Legacy

Another Mountain Bowl; Evergreen High School football vs. Conifer.  The first one I attended as a spectator in 2009, months after Quinton had transitioned.  The next year 2010 I joined the Evergreen High School football staff which is shared in our first book, Quinton’s Messages.  We had been 7 wins and 1 loss since against Conifer.  As we prepared for another battle this past Friday, October 20, 2017, it was Senior Night.  Each of the seniors was introduced one at a time by the announcer; each had written a prepared statement which was read by the announcer.  This gave me plenty of time to reflect on the fact that Quinton would also be a senior if he were here with us in the physical world.  This thought made me more than a little melancholy.

The ceremony ended and we started warming up again.  As I watched us getting ready, I ended up standing near Adam Cardillo who directed me to look at the back of one of our helmets.  I was quite taken back to see a “Q” and the word “Adversity”.  As I stared kind of dumbfounded, Adam  watched my reaction and then told me that everybody’s helmet was the same.  I walk behind a line of players looking, at each helmet and everyone was the same.

I really didn’t know what to think; I guess I was numb, shocked, surprised and humbled. I wouldn’t have even noticed if not for Adam.  Warm-ups ended and game time approached.  I told interim head coach David Leek that I was headed to the coach’s box next to the press box.  This is where I am in the games because I can see the field better and report my observations of the opponent’s defense.  Mr. Leek said, “Hold on Ernie, the boys have something for you.”  I didn’t know what was going on, but I had noticed another difference.  A few of the boys had come up to me during warm-ups and out of the blue said, “Coach, I love you.”  I found that odd, as I embraced each with a hug, but the moments were fleeting as we had a game to prepare for.

After the coin toss, the four senior captains came off the field and walked toward me.  This happened fast, but as it did, I noticed other players and coaches walking toward me.  The captains came to me together, Luc (Tank) Lajoy, Will (One-Hand) Jermano, Jack (Wags) Wagner, and Mason (Mace) Edwards.  This was happening so fast, none of it expected or known to me.  They handed me a helmet, a helmet that most of the team and coaches had signed.  A helmet with a “Q” on the back with the word “Adversity”.  Oh, how often to I teach & preach there can be and often is a silver lining to adversity.  More than that, it is through adversity that we learn, grow and evolve.

I often wonder if anybody hears me as I honor our son, Quinton Stone Jackson, by speaking the truth that he opened our eyes to.  In the context of being an assistant football coach at my alma mater, I usually share that I coach because of Quinton.  Additionally, whenever there are struggles and adversity faced by the team or by an individual on the team, I am there to do what I can to help them to see adversity through a different lens.

One by one, each captain hugged me, telling me they loved me and then other players and then the coaches.  Now I was shocked.  This was Senior night, and Quinton would be a Senior, and the team honors us in such an heartfelt way.  As this unfolded and after the game, I was told that this was the senior captain’s idea! This is what makes it even more special; these young men originated this tribute! Later I looked at the helmet closer, a number 15 was on one side; the number we associate with Quinton because he was born on December 15th. 

Kristine and I are humbled by this loving gesture by these young men the same age as Quinton.

 Q AdversityHelmet 2

 

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