Signs from the other side can come in all shapes and sizes and are personal to all those who are open enough to receive. I’ve been receiving signs for years and I believe the reason behind this is because I specifically ask for them, I know when they are a sign and not just a coincidence and that I’m always open minded in terms of what I will see, hear or feel.
The day after my grandad passed in 2005, I was in Japan with my boyfriend. If you have already read my blog post “The Date” it explains that I was given the exact date of my grandads passing approximately five months before, from my granddads wife who had died three years previously.
So, it was the day after that we were going to a temple to look at the beautiful buildings and Buddha. As you can imagine, my mind was so far away from feeling like a normal tourist. I was in terrible grief, disbelief, sadness, miles away from my family at a time when I just wanted to be around them, especially my mum. As mentioned in that blog post, I still went on my trip to Japan, even though my Grandad was gravely ill. He was a serving member of the Merchant Navy during WW2 and his love of travel had rubbed off on me, there was absolutely no way he would want me to sit at home in sadness whilst I had to chance to see the world, so we still went.
That morning at the Temple was such a mix of emotion for me. The calmness and the stillness of it, a real chance for me to reflect on the situation, to gather my thoughts amongst the beauty of it all, I was truly grateful for that. I was surrounded by unusual plants and flowers, steep steps leading up to tiny wooden lookouts over the hills, reds and golds, high humidity and the strange sound of crocking cicada’s.
As I strolled along the dusty footpaths, a thought of grandad popped up into my minds eye once again. He was gone; he really was gone from this Earth. At that very moment I saw a flicker in my peripheral vision and my attention drawn to the most stunning butterfly I had ever seen. Not only was their wing covered in a tapestry of vibrant reds and blues, it was the sheer size of the insect that I just couldn’t believe. I had no idea that butterflies could grow to that size. I studied him for a while as he fluttered around me and I was filled with a warm glow as I had this inner knowing that somehow, he was a small gift from grandad.
As I started to walk on, he followed. Bouncing up and down, fluttering around my face, performing a little dance which felt it was just for me. The butterfly followed me for what seemed like ages and I said thanks to grandad when finally, he flew away.
Two weeks later at my grandad’s funeral, my mum showed me the flower arrangements, which included little fake butterflies all over them. I knew then that this was my sign for grandad and that when he wanted to communicate with me, he could come via a butterfly.
My nan’s sign has always been hearts and feathers. I’m fully aware that feathers appear to be the cliché of the A to Z of signs of the afterlife. But there is a very practical reason behind this. Feathers are light, catch the breeze easily and are soft and fluffy. They also stand out and are very easy to move, it doesn’t take a huge amount of energy from the sprit to manipulate a feather. Therefore, they are so widely used and why so many people find white feathers in the strangest of places. I have received many white feathers since nan’s passing, so I always associated them with her.
In 2016 I took my Reiki One Degree. Even though I’ve had spiritual “happenings” my whole life, it was the start of my Reiki journey that started to make me think and feel differently about pretty much everything in my life. I knew I was on an exciting threshold with this and potentially was about to begin finding my true calling, however I was still filled with doubt. I had left my job a year earlier, after years of forging a career and studying professionally, I always thought I knew “who” I was even though the signs back then were pretty evident that I should be working with people on a personal level, not under the cover of the corporate world. But at this point I still felt that lack of identity and wasn’t sure if I was entirely on the right path, I needed a sign from my spirit team that the Reiki path was the right one.
I was pondering this very question as I took a walk with my little four-year-old daughter on a warm spring day, around May 2016. “Please give me a sign that this is my chosen path” I put out into the Universe and I waited.
As we slowly walked along the cycle track, a butterfly suddenly appeared and flew around our heads. I knew instantly that this was my sign and that I could connect my energy to that of the butterfly. I told my daughter this. “What do you mean?” she asked.
“Watch this” I said: “Butterfly, please come and land on my arm” I asked. I must have sounded like a loon, but inside I just knew that I could connect to him. After a few attempts of the butterfly coming in close to my face, then fluttering off quite far but then drawing in again like he was attached to an invisible line to my hand, he flew straight up and landed quite contentedly on my forearm. I stayed completely still, as I felt the tickle of his little legs on my skin. “Mummy it worked!” shouted my little one in beautiful excitement.
Just then, the butterfly flew off and hovered around us once again. I was filled with so much joy inside about the fact the butterfly actually landed on me, coupled with thoughts of “well that was a coincidence! Was that just a fluke? How often do butterflies land on people? I need more verification!”.
I calmly faced the skies and said out loud: “Grandad, if this is you, land on Ariane’s head”. I knew this was a big ask, but I trusted my grandad. I told Ariane to stand very still and have lots of patience. She did exactly as I asked. We waited and waited as the butterfly hovered, flew away, came back, moved around our heads, in and out, in and out, getting closer to Ariane, flying away again, over her head like a tiny helicopter trying to make a landing. I willed and willed it to land on her head. Then it did. It landed on top of her beautiful brown hair and there it sat.
Ariane stood still with a look of pure elation on her face “is it there, is it there?” she said, almost like she was balancing a bowling ball on her head. I was speechless and was frantically looking around to show someone; however it was just me, Ariane and our butterfly. I had a thought of taking a photo so reached into my handbag, but in doing so disturbed it, and off it flew. This didn’t disappointment me however, I didn’t need any proof of what happened, both Ariane and I saw it and that was enough for us.
As we walked on, chatting excitedly about what had just happened, we both felt a little sad that the butterfly had left. Just then, I saw the familiar red colours of the velvety butterfly wings on the pavement up ahead. As we approached, I reached for my mobile phone and turned the camera on. There, sitting next to the white feather, was our butterfly, our grandad, next to our nan. There was my sign, loud and clear.
My journey started on that day and I’ve never looked back.
It’s good to remember that our loved ones are always there, always listening, always ready to help, as long as we are always open and ready to receive. Start asking for signs and see what happens, be patient and you really will be amazed!