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Sharing the Journey from Bereaved to Shining Light Parent
The Music and the Microplane - The Wisdom of Greg

The Music and the Microplane - The Wisdom of Greg

  • Posted
    • Mar
    • 23
    • 2023
by Elizabeth Boisson

Bill is just an ordinary guy who has had extraordinary things happen to him since the passing of his son Greg. Susan writes it all down. The Calgary, Canada affiliate leaders are on an amazing journey with their son. 

Several months after our son Greg passed, we received a sign from him that was such an intense experience and filled with such meaning and love that I have to say it's one of my favorites. That's saying a lot, because I have now written down over 2,100 signs from our son in the 8 1/2 years since he left this Earth.
My husband Bill and I know we are very blessed to receive so many signs. We don't know exactly why we receive so many; we accept it as the plan, and we are very grateful. We know one of our tasks now is to share these signs with other Shining Light Parents to offer the hope that whether they hear from their children or not, there is no doubt that all of our kids in spirit are with us.
This particular sign happened to us five months after Greg passed on September 7, 2014, so Bill and I were pretty early in our grief journey. We were getting lots of amazing signs from Greg in the form of Bill's vivid dreams about our son, Bill hearing Greg talk to him during waking hours, and incredible synchronicities, but at that painful early stage even amazing signs don't make the very sad feelings go away.

Bill was having one of those nights, sitting in our home office and thinking about Greg and missing him so much, and from another room I heard the music Bill played on his computer at full volume. He played one of Greg's all-time favorites, Metallica's 'Enter Sandman' (I had printed the lyrics of this song on Greg's memory card to hand out at his Celebration of Life), and then Bill listened to one of his own all-time favorites, Bob Dylan's 'Knockin' on Heaven's Door'.

A few days later, we went to a favorite store of mine because I had a coupon for $10 off a purchase. I looked around the store and came to the kitchenwares section where I found a Microplane grater priced at $9.99. It was the exact grater that I had given up as lost a year before. At that time, I had turned my kitchen upside down looking for it, but hadn't found it until the month after Greg passed when, looking for childhood items for Greg's Celebration of Life memory table, I opened up a plastic storage bin that I kept in a bedroom closet. It's the bedroom where Greg had stayed when he was released on bail after being charged with stealing from his roommate to support his drug addiction. We were out of the country at the time, and Greg was home alone for a few days before we were able to return to be with him.

A few weeks after we got home, I had asked Greg if he knew where the Microplane was, because he was the only person who had been in our home while we were away. He immediately denied knowing what I was talking about, and was upset that I would ask him about it. I felt not only crazy, but guilty about suspecting him of having anything to do with the disappearance of my grater. 

Then, one month after Greg passed, I had found my Microplane. Somehow I knew that Greg was watching me find it. The blackened and ruined grater was lying on top of the contents of the storage bin, where Greg had hidden it. I showed it to Bill and we realized Greg had used it as a hot knife to smoke cannabis when we were out of the country.

So a few months later I'm in my favorite store and I'm looking at the exact Microplane that Greg had used and hidden away. I showed it to Bill in the store and he immediately said he knew Greg was making an amend to me. Not only did Greg replace it, but I got it for free with my $10 off coupon! That's pretty amazing, but Greg wasn't done yet. 

We left the store and got into our vehicle and Bill turned on the radio. As we pulled away from our parking spot, Metallica's 'Enter Sandman' immediately started to play. Between tears, I sang along to some of the lyrics, and as James Hetfield sings "Take my hand, we're off to Never Never Land," I said to Bill that I knew someone took Greg's hand when he passed. 

Then, as the song trailed off, I felt what I can only describe as intense anticipation. I just knew that something incredible was about to happen, and it sure did. 'Enter Sandman' ended, and immediately Bob Dylan starts to sing 'Knockin' on Heaven's Door'! Greg played for us the same two songs, in the same order, that his Dad had listened to a few nights before as he was remembering and missing him. 

As Dylan continued to sing, we became very aware that there was an enveloping presence in our vehicle with us. We both felt what I can only describe as a dome of thick and heavy pressure that was above and around us, like a big hug. We know it was Greg.

~Susan, Bill and Greg Van Oije

If you would like to hear more about our amazing experiences, click here to watch the video Bill made for the HPH YouTube channel.

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