Sunday, November 02, 2008

A Pop from Pop

In October of 2000, my Maggie May had a hip replacement surgery. Knowing she would be freaked, I pulled my mattress onto the floor in front of my bedroom's fireplace to be able to sleep near her. This scenario frightened me a bit. I was always terrified of being crushed by a chimney in an earthquake.

During this time, I had just been searching and searching for some sense of peace or fulfillment in my life. I was reading the book Something More by Sarah Van Breathnach. There was a section of the book that declared that your subconscious true self knows your future. It instructed to concentrate / pray / meditate on a question about your future for three nights an you would get your answer on the fourth day.

Surprisingly, this worked! It's how I found my house! I had sold my house and desperately needed another. For three nights I prayed...Show me my next house. For three days, I drove around looking and looking for a new home. The fourth morning, I dreamed of my feet standing on saltillo tile looking at a kidney shaped pool with mountains in the distance.

I wrote this off to nonsense. I wanted saltillo tile in my kitchen...why would I see it outside? Who puts saltillo tile on a patio? It was Monday and I went to work knowing my buyer would walk away by the end of the day. While home at lunch to take care of Mags, my phone rang. It was my BFF. She couldn't talk. She was literally so excited, she couldn't even speak coherently. She handed the phone to her sister, my realtor.

"[BFF] thinks she's found your house!"

I called my boss and raced over here. I saw the house in a daze. I knew immediately I loved it. We wrote the offer on the hood of my jeep and as I got in to drive back to the studio, I started shaking... yep, saltillo tile on the patio! (And the kitchen!)

This process had worked with several other things going on in my life. It was a heady time. And so, I got the crazy idea I wanted a visit from my father who had passed 25 years ago. Every night I prayed. Every morning, I awoke with the certainty that this was the one thing that I couldn't make happen.

One particular night, I awoke around 2 a.m. I woke up in a pissy mood. I was angry at my father.

"Dammit, he didn't come again. I ask for one lousy thing in 25 years and he can't do that for me. That's OK. He never gave a damn about me..."

As my silent tirade went on in my head... I didn't want to wake Mags sleeping in her bed right next to mine... I was aware of a "pop" in the wall.

It was a sound I was familair with having grown up in construction and the deep South. Houses settle and they pop as they do.

The house popped again on the eastern wall. Then the north side, then south. All of a sudden there were popping noises all in the walls all over the house. They were loud and scary and I was suddenly afraid we were having a quake and I was sleeping in front of a fireplace. I sat up feeling for Maggie's heiny sling so I could get her out of the house. And then I realized... the house was NOT moving.

I sat there in the darkness feeling for movement and then decided it must be a dream. But if it's a dream why was Maggie sitting alert in her bed and twisting her head toward each new pop?

I was really starting to freak out thinking my house was about to fall down around me. The popping was nonstop and getting louder and louder. And then it occurred to me: Daddy was a contractor.

I shouted to be heard over all the commotion: O.K. O.K. I KNOW YOU'RE HERE. YOU DON'T HAVE TO TEAR MY HOUSE DOWN!

And it stopped.

As I calmed down, I sat there in my bed and said, "I just wanted to have a conversation not be scared out of my wits. I guess I just wanted to know you were still around and maybe looking out for me. I wanted you to know I miss you."

With that, there was one more pop.

It took me a while to even be able to talk about this and another year or so to tell my mother. I guess I thought it would shock or hurt her. Instead, she was hardly impressed.

"Oh, I see him all the time. He's always in the mirror, just off the corner of my eye. He watches me get dressed."

So that's where he's been all these years!


Anonymous said...

What a great story! I'm gonna try that!

I always knew my dad wouldn't appear to me because he wouldn't want to scare the crap out of me. But I feel him around.

CreekHiker / HollysFolly said...

Janet, Be warned! It can be a very freaky experience!

Linda@VS said...

What wonderful stories, Holly, both about your dad and about finding your house.

I almost never sense my mother's presence in my house, but I feel her with me ALL the time in the car. She's a comfortable presence, and I enjoy the sense of her company.