The Penny

October 16, 2011

A year ago today we were cleaning out my brother’s home… it was only 3 days after we recieved the news of his death. I’d like to share a story about that day.

A few days before were given a copy of this poem by a dear friend:

I found a penny today just lying on the ground.
But it’s not just a penny, this coin I found.
Found pennies come from heaven,
That’s what my Grandpa told me.
He said Angels toss them down.
Oh how I loved that story.

He said when an angel misses you they toss a penny down.
Sometimes to cheer you up, to make a smile out of your frown.
So don’t pass by that penny when you’re feeling blue.
It may be a penny from heaven that an angel is tossing you.

I didn’t think too much of the poem upon first reading it… but as we were going through Brian’s things, it came to mean much, much more.

I had spent a lot of time in his room boxing up his books and clothes and periodically stopping to sit on the bed, hold something he used to wear up close to my cheek and cry for a bit. The last thing I emptied was his clothes hamper; after I’d removed the clothes and placed them in a bag, I carried all the bags I’d collected out into the living room– leaving the hamper where I had found it.

About a half hour later my Mom went back in there to get the hamper from his room and she came out with a such look on her face; one of awe, hope and pain all at the same time. She stretched out her hand and showed me something she found when she lifted the hamper from its place– it was a single penny. Thinking back to the poem about the pennies I felt myself beginning to choke up a bit. But it got better. I turned the penny over to see it was dated 1975– the year Brian was born. I immediately burst into tears… and it made my heart smile to think that Brian sent that penny to us to let us know he was there.

To this day, every single time I find a penny, my heart skips a beat as I pick it up because I think of each of those pennies as a reminder from Brian that he’s still with me. And, more often than not, I find the pennies at the most amazing times… when I truly needed to find them most. I think he knows exactly what he is doing.

I’m not religious but I am spiritual and I will state openly that I do not believe in God and haven’t since before Brian passed. But I believe with all my heart that we do not just “go away” when we die and each time I come across another penny I’ll continue to think Brian is smiling down on me!

Just wanted to share!

Dear Brian,

It’s so hard to believe that it’s been a whole year since you left this world for another… where hopefully you found the peace you weren’t able to find here.

There’s so much I could tell you about this past year—about how much I’ve cried until complete exhaustion, how much I’ve missed you and how often I’ve picked up the phone and started to dial your number to call you only to realize seconds later what I was doing. There are days it is so painful to be around people because I feel so different from them. And I think there is a part of me that is afraid to get close to people because I’m afraid that they too will leave.

I’ve started to come out of my shell a little bit and am beginning to return somewhat to the person I was before. While I’ll never be the same again—I’ve managed to find myself laughing more often and when I think of you there are almost as many smiles as there are tears… so I’m starting to move on a little bit.

After you died I was haunted by the fact that each day that passed was bringing you farther and farther away from me; the last time I saw you, the last time we spoke, the last e-mail I received from you… all of those were becoming farther away as well. Now that feeling seems to have shifted a tiny bit; I find myself beginning to see each day that passes as bringing me one day closer to the day I get to see you again.

Love Always,
Laura

%d bloggers like this: