When my late husband committed suicide, it felt as if I died too. The searing pain pierced my heart so deeply that I felt disconnected from everyday life. I would watch the world go by as if it were a movie, and I did not have a part. However, my two children needed my caring attention, so I walked through life accomplishing the necessary tasks. However, when I was alone at night and in the confines of my bedroom, I would incessantly replay my life in my mind’s eye like a never-ending rerun.

Over time, I was finally able to shut off these replays. Very slowly the fog began to clear, although not without some hard work and introspection on my part. Moreover, while I came to discern some of the reasons why my late husband thought he had to leave, I still could not reach a definitive conclusion for he left no note. As with many suicide survivors, I felt guilty for being unable to pick up on the clues about his unhappiness and spiraling descent into that final darkness from which he saw no return. That unrelenting need for answers is what initially caused me to turn to the intuitive therapist, Melinda Vail.

Through her abilities, I was able to connect to my late husband. As we spoke, Melinda relayed the minute details of my life, which included a rash on my son’s leg; recent contact with a friend with whom I had not communicated for more than a year; the name of a new doctor I was visiting after my appointment with her; a new business associate’s name; and so on and so forth. Someone had to be informing her of these details. I came to realize that my husband was still present, watching over our children and me. Perhaps he was not physically there for me to see and touch, but he was in my heart and in another dimension close by.

After the reading, I went home and talked to him every night before going to sleep. I would beseech him to give me a sign he was listening – to either throw down a book or rustle the blinds. Not two weeks later, in the middle of the night, I was awakened by a loud thumping noise. The room was very dark, and I was too sleepy to recognize what had really happened. I drifted back to sleep, and closer to morning I heard a whistling noise.

By this time, the light was wafting in through the blinds, and I saw the dust cover of a book floating through the air. It finally dawned on me what had caused the thumping noise. I looked on the floor, and there was a book lying quite far from its proper place on top of my armoire. I laid back down to think about it, and moments later I heard some clicking noises over the intercom. I jumped out of bed to see from where the noise was emanating. I looked outside for noisy trucks or cars rattling by, and I checked to see if my children were safely asleep. Finding nothing out of the ordinary, I climbed back into bed. About a half-hour later the noise reoccurred. I followed the same procedure but again found nothing amiss. I turned off the intercom and told my husband thank you for the message!

Now that particular book, Chronicle of the 20th Century, had been sitting on its shelf for over a year and has sat there for another two years since this incident. My entire house is filled with books and has been for the last twenty-five years, and a book has never fallen from its place. So sometimes you should be careful about the things for which you ask. How could I not believe that my husband was sending me a message – letting me know he was close by and fulfilling my request for a sign – when that is exactly for what I asked? I felt strangely comforted by this startling turn of events.

My interaction with Melinda opened up the door for me to truly believe I had not “lost” my husband; he had simply moved to another dimension. How reassuring it is for me to know death is only another stage of life, and our loved ones remain with us always – and not just in our minds and hearts. It has made acceptance of his death easier, whether I ever discover the answers to my questions or not.

**Excerpt from “The Other Side of the Vail: Spiritual Guidance for Everyday Living” by Melinda Vail with Ellen Gerst 2011


Ellen Gerst

Ellen Gerst is a Life Coach who specializes in grief and relationships, an author, and speaker. Widowed young at the age of 39, she writes from a “been there/done that” perspective. Losing her husband to suicide after 20 years of marriage set her on a path to finding her true self and the inner strength she possessed. She shares both her journey and her perspective on how to move gracefully and successfully through the grief journey. She is the author of “Suddenly Single," which is a compendium of articles covering the practical, emotional and spiritual aspects of the grief journey. She went on to capture the continuation of her story in the sequel to "Suddenly Single," aptly named: “Love After Loss: Writing The Rest of Your Story.” “Love After Loss” is a blueprint on how one can find new love after the loss of a partner from death, divorce, or break-up. It includes coaching exercises; how to Internet date; and how to have a healthy and successful relationship – all intertwined with true life dating tips and stories. Ellen has penned many other books on coping with grief, as well as others on such subjects as dating and relationships, caregiving for aging parents, spirituality, confidence building, the power of positive thought, suicide awareness, teen pregnancy prevention, fitness and weight loss, and social media and networking. She is also the co-editor of an anthology of real life changing stories, “Thin Threads of Grief & Renewal.” The stories tell of untold grief and how each author found personal renewal after his/her great loss. It is an inspirational volume for those mourning any sort of loss. To listen to Ellen's radio show: Click Here Visit Ellen on her website at http://www.LNGerst.com where she has various free downloads on coping with grief and finding love after loss. Join Ellen on Facebook for every day tips on finding love after loss and coping with grief. Finding Love After Loss http://bit.ly/cxipZ0 Words of Comfort To Pave Your Journey Of Loss http://www.facebook.com/WordsOfComfortToPaveYourJourneyOfLoss

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