Thursday, March 5, 2009

Miracle on 12th Street

Courtesy of Normie Kells

For about the last 45 years, my husband, Matt’s, family has gone down to the shore every mother’s day weekend. It’s always a fun time to hang out with each other. This year, however, was different. My father in law, Cliff Kells (known to the grandkids as “Normie” – long story) passed the week before Thanksgiving. This was our first year without the family patriarch, who was such an important part of our lives for so many years. He also was my biggest cheerleader & champion of my writing. Throughout the following months, there were many signs that he was still with us. None, however, were as amazing & real as what happened on May 11th at the Tahiti Inn, Ocean City, NJ.

We arrived at our apartments on Thursday afternoon. The apartments surround a common courtyard, with sliding glass doors & windows facing it. Those are the doors that we used to get in & out of our units. Everything was fine, & nothing was unusual all day. The next morning, Matt went next door to his mom’s to have
coffee, & as he walked up to the sliding door, noticed something
unusual. There, clear as day, was a profile of Normie. At first, we thought it was from the fog, however, the profile stayed the entire day. You could see his nose, where the folds of his skin were, his eyes & his chin. Of course, there were doubters in the family. Things were mentioned such as Matt or his brother, Bill, did it. The problem with that is that Billy isn’t as tall as Normie & Matt is taller, & the face was exactly where it would be on Normie’s 6 foot frame. Also, even if you try to press your face against glass, the features are compressed. This was not. It looked as if Normie had stood there & a light was shined on his profile & embedded in the door. Later that day, my mother in law, Gretchen, went to church. She walked in & as she did, the organist played the first verse of “I am with you”. After the first verse, she quit & went on to another song, as if she didn’t know why she suddenly started playing that song.

I’ve always believed that our loved ones are never gone, & are around us. Normie has let us know for months. But, on 12th Street in Ocean City, he proved it to doubters & let his beloved wife know that he is, indeed, still with her.

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