A sign that Joe and I saw on the way to Mackinaw Island.
I think anyone who has lost someone they care about, looks for signs from that person...something that says, "Hey, I'm OK." I had told my husband after Brad's accident, "I just wish the lights would flicker, so I know that Brad is in Heaven." Well, I got what I asked for...in a big way.
Joe (Brad's step-father), Tiffany (Brad's sister), her family and I were at a Pettisville High School Basketball game. It was a week after Brad's accident and the school asked us if we would be able to attend the game. They wanted to do some special things in Brad's memory and would like us to be there to participate. I wasn't sure I could go, but I loved seeing Brad's friends and of course, I wanted to be there for Brad, as well.
As we walked into the gym, I could see a very large banner that read, 'BIG BAD BRAD." The cheerleaders had made signs for all the basketball team players (before Brad's accident). One evening when Brad came home from basketball practice, he was so excited because he had a banner hanging in the gym. Then, the announcer spoke about the passing of one of their classmates and asked for a moment of silence. We then went to our seats and as I looked across the gym, I saw another banner which read, "HE only throws what HE knows we can catch" with Brad's initials and dates. His classmates had written sentiments and signed the banner. I received some flowers from Brad's "Secret Cheerleader" and all of Brads' teammates had put Brad's initials on their shirts.
After the game was over (and Pettisville had won), the announcer asked for anyone who wanted to participate in a "prayer circle" to come to the middle of the basketball floor. The coach of Brad's team knelt in the middle of the floor and Joe and I were beside him, as we began to pray. As soon as everyone said, "Amen," I looked up with tears in my eyes and was amazed at the number of people, who had stayed after the game, to join the prayer circle. And, it wasn't just the Pettisville fans, but the fans from the other team, as well. So many people stopped us and gave us hugs, as they told us how sorry they were, how wonderful Brad was and asked if there was anything they could do for us. It was truly a gift to have that many people who cared.
As Joe and I were exiting the gym and were standing in line (to get to the lobby), the lights began to flicker on and off. Joe and I looked at each other and we knew it was Brad, telling us, "Hey, I'm OK...I made it to Heaven."
MY BIRTHDAY GIFT FROM BRAD...NOVEMBER 2, 2009
While Brad was here on Earth, he probably wasn't the best at buying me Mother's Day gifts, birthday gifts, etc. and he always needed prodding from his sister, Tiffany to go out shopping. But, that was OK because there was never any doubt that Brad loved me...with or without presents.
For this past birthday, I wanted Brad to give me a sign as a birthday present. Now, I wasn't sure if he would give me one (due to his lack of motivation to buy presents), but, I was hoping that he would remember. Bralynn (Brad's Niece) and I were heading to Toledo and we were on a back road, when I looked up in the sky and saw a very faint rainbow (which made me smile from ear-to-ear). In typical "Brad fashion," I got my birthday present. He didn't want to overdo it, so he just made sure it was a "faint" rainbow, but I got it. Thanks Brad for my birthday present.
Vase Brad made in art class at Pettisville High school...2002
BRAD'S VASE THAT HE MADE IN ART CLASS
The night of Brad's accident, Joe (Brad's step-father) and I had returned home from the morgue to an empty house. I knew as soon as I walked in the door that Brad would never be walking in the door with me. I was in such shock that I began throwing things and breaking things on the floor. One of the things that I broke was a cheap vase that I had purchased at Big Lots, but I really liked. A month earlier, Brad had accidentally broken the vase and I told him, "Don't worry about it, I'll go get another one" (and that's the one that I threw and broke, among others).
Almost two weeks after Brad's accident, one of Brad's classmates appeared at the front door with this amazing vase. She said that Brad had been working on it for Art class, but he was killed before he had finished painting and glazing it. So, each student took a turn on finishing the vase for me. I was speechless...this vase is the most beautiful piece of pottery, I have ever seen. I will cherish this gift from Brad for the rest of my life.