Dear Friends and Family, I traveled in my dreams last night. For a brief moment I connected with my mom who died in October of 1997. For anyone who longs for a mother’s touch this Christmas read on….


                                   A Touch of Christmas    



                                                           Marilyn A. Kinsella, 1998

Some of you know about the miracle I tell about the Christmas after my mom died. For those of you who haven’t heard the story, here it is:  Mom and I shared a special bond that started when I was born just four hours before her birthday. She was the writer of stories; I was the teller. For many special occasions throughout the years we gave each other hummingbirds. After she died I asked her to send me a hummingbird. It was to be a sign that she forgave me for placing her in a nursing home and that she was in that beautiful home she often talked about when I came to visit. No one knew of this request. Weeks went by. On Christmas Eve I remember thinking…I guess she hasn’t forgiven me. Then on Christmas morning my family sat around in a circle to open “the first gift of Christmas.” My first gift was a beautiful, crystal hummingbird. Through the tears, I told everyone how it was a sign from my mom. In a sense Mom wrote that story that now I tell, “The Gift of the Hummingbird.”

After the grieving process, I noticed that I couldn’t hear my mom’s voice. I could hear other voices - dad, grandpa, my best friend, Jane…but not my mom’s voice. Then one night I had a very realistic dream. I was at my desk at the library and the phone rang. It was my mom’s voice. She said “Hi, Honey!”  Just the way she always did when I came to visit her in the nursing home. Each time I thought…oh, she’s back!  But then, that’s all there was…”Hi, Honey,” and nothing else. But, in my phone-dream she said that she missed me. I told her I missed her too. She also told me she was living in that beautiful house she told me about. I said that I knew that. Then, I said that I would be seeing her shortly. Even in my dream I thought…what is “shortly” in eternity…perhaps today; perhaps 50 years. I was just so overjoyed to hear her. It still seems so special that she called me. All I heard was her voice – the thing I missed about my mother.

I’ve had other dreams about Mom since she passed, but nothing like the one I had last night. There is a Christmas song, “I’ll Be Home for Christmas.”  It brings tears to my eyes every time I hear that last words of the song….”if only in my dreams.” Last night I got to spend a brief moment with my Mom. All I remember is reaching out and touching her cheek. I had forgotten how soft it was. That’s it! I don’t remember anything else. I consciously don’t think I ever missed touching her soft, pillow-like cheek. It took a dream to remind me what a privilege it was to visit her while she was in the nursing home. She couldn’t speak, but, when I reached out and touched that warm, satiny cheek, she always smiled that sweet smile of hers.

This morning my family gave me some lovely gifts, but Chrissie, my oldest, gave me a set of crystal hummingbirds to put in the window. Even in the waking hours of Christmas she is sending little reminders. And when I go to sleep tonight, as I do every night, I’ll wait for her to visit, if only in my dreams.

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