Unusual Experiences Become Usual
Our first experience of sharing Brian's story at The Compassionate
Friends meeting (a support group for families grieving the death of a
child) surprised us. We found that other parents had similar stories to
It was sort of “hush-hush.”
No one mentioned anything until Kathryn and I told some of Brian’s story
at a meeting. Then, after we finished, the other parents began to tell
of their own unusual experiences. The first time we did this, there were
fifteen sets of parents at the meeting, of whom eight were living with
their children when they died. Of these eight, four children had
premonitions concerning their accidental deaths. One twelve-year old
boy, who died in a car accident, gave his mother a list of his life
accomplishments the evening before his death and talked about what he
wanted to achieve in the future.
One mother, who worked at my hospital, told us the story of her
four-year-old daughter, Stephanie. She died on a playground slide at her
daycare center when a ribbon caught around her neck and strangled her.
This mother brought in the picture Stephanie had drawn twenty minutes
before she died, showing her dead body in dark colors hanging by the
neck. Off to the side is a drawing of her in bright colors putting on a
yellow halo, with a yellow angel in the sky dropping more halos down to
her. “Stephanie always said that she did not want to grow up and go to
school like the other children,” this woman said. “She was very special
and artistic and loved everything with all her heart. Almost every day,
she would tell me, ‘Know what? I love you with a mad passion!’”
Stephanie sounded a lot like Brian to me. I also noticed that the
media’s coverage of her death withheld any mention of Stephanie’s
picture, just as they had omitted Brian’s foretelling of his death.
A year later, at another TCF meeting, the same thing happened again.
I told Brian’s story and then spent the next hour listening as the other
parents told of their own paranormal experiences surrounding the deaths
of their children. All they needed to share these amazing stories was a
safe and sympathetic ear, something they had not found previously. “This ‘magic’ stuff is all around us, Kath,” I said later. “But nobody
wants to talk about it.”
“But Pooh, that is impossible,” said
“One can’t do that!”
“Yes, Christopher Robin, you are correct,” replied Pooh.
“One can’t … but two can.”
—A. A. Milne