“Getting” signs and connections when a loved one passes is a relatively common phenomenon. Some grievers are sure they’ve experienced signs about or from their loved ones who have passed. Others want to receive these signs. At the 2015 Association of Death and Counseling Conference, Dr. Gloria Horsley talked with Mitch Carmody about his take on signs, connections and the grieving process. “People are feeling this (connection)…but they’re afraid to actually tell anyone.” Nobody wants to sound delusional or like they’re reaching for straws, which can further the feeling of isolation. “It’s not crazy; it’s a phenomenon that does happen.”
Carmody points out that in many cases a person may know they’re dying, and they’ll say things before they pass that are foreshadowing of “signs” and it “embraces that there is a continuing connection.” When this happens, people really start looking for signs from pennies on the sidewalk to butterflies visiting. “They (your loved ones) will then come and connect with you,” he says. Carmody dubs this phenomenon “whispers of love.”
Seeing the Signs
Why do some people see signs and others don’t? Carmody suspects it’s because the mind can be so full of grief that signs may be missed. Children under five years old are particularly “good” at seeing loved ones after passing, says Carmody. He hosts a Compassionate Friends evening where participants share stories about connections and ask for signs of their own. In some instances, it’s during those evenings when signs are finally seen. “Once you start getting the signs…then you can connect more,” he says.
Ask for easy signs, suggests Carmody. “Don’t ask for a penguin in Texas”— even though in some circumstances, something that miraculous just may happen. Your passed loved ones are eager to connect according to Carmody. You just have to listen and watch for those signs.