Months To Years Summer 2018 MTY_Summer2018_v7 - Page 28

covered in a spray of white roses, and I watched as it was to describe the moment when an event that occurs in the lowered into the ground after the funeral. When everyone material world also coincides with an idea or psychological had left the service and the gravedigger began to cover state of mind in a meaningful way. In this sense, meaning the casket with red clay, I left to drive to the Carolina coast is assigned to an actual event or phenomenon based on to visit with my in-laws. a person’s experience and interpretation of two seem-      ingly unrelated or coincidental happenings that produce Several hours later, I arrived in Columbia at sunset, and a tangible effects. Yet, even with this useful concept at my few sprinkles hit my windshield as a bright rainbow mate- disposal, I felt silly for finding causality in coincidence and rialized, low on the horizon and right in front of me. Some interpreting a rainbow at sunset as a sign or message from people might respond to this phenomenon by saying that my father. While the event comforted me on the day it oc- the appearance of the rainbow was merely a coincidence, curred, I was unsettled by my response to it and continued but the moment I saw the rainbow, my sorrow mingled to look for ways to explain the knowledge I had gleaned with tears of joy. I simply knew that this was my father’s from a partially visible circle in the sky. Once I began to way of affirming that he had heard the eulogy, that he reflect upon the meaning I had assigned the rainbow, my was aware that I had found his last email. Suddenly, his rational mind decided the event was unsettling because it death and my survival of it were bound by a bow-sign in required me to confront my own resistance to my father’s the sky. It was as if the sign was repeating the image in departure. The reality of his death and funeral in the past the lines of the Emerson poem I had quoted so my father was juxtaposed to his (im)possible and (un)expected intru- could say, “I’m here, but only for a moment. I heard your sion into my present thoughts and experiences in a way words.” Within the context of my driving away from my fa- that seemed to alter space and time. Clearly, witnessing ther’s burial service, the repetition of the bow as a sign was this phenomenon a few hours after I eulogized him using different; yet, it seemed even closer to Emerson’s poem, the same natural imagery caused me to perceive causality which references the fading natural beauty of rainbows in coincidence. However, witnessing the rainbow material- and sunsets as the speaker promises that the love that izing at sunset also forced me to re-engage life from a new bonds family members is eternal, though the body itself is perspective conjured by awe. finite. In my own analysis of the moment of synchronicity I As an agnostic, however, it is impossible for me to recon- experienced, I was working through the separation anxiety cile the sense of awe I felt when I saw the rainbow or the that results from the departure of a parent, but I was mystical epiphany that I am describing with my reasoned consoling myself with the magical return of a deceased admission that I do not know and cannot presume to know parent that could not be sustained. I was attempting to that life exists after death or if communication between symbolically fulfill a wish for my father’s return after his the living and the dead is even possible. My rational mind death by allocating meaning to a sign and hoping it could is hesitant to assert that the rainbow I perceived was more make my father, who was physically absent, present. Yet, than a natural phenomenon. However, I perceived it as the very sign of his perceived return, a rainbow, already part of a pattern and experienced it as a connection with ensured a subsequent and final departure with its dissi- something beyond myself. I was profoundly moved the pation. Further, my attempts at meaning-making in my instant I saw the colors of the bow and had to pull my subsequent narratives about the experience substituted car over onto the shoulder of the interstate to let waves of the very pleasure of creation and storytelling for the pain emotions and tears flow for nearly an hour.   of my loss. For this reason, my experience of synchronicity was an important catalyst for both working through and When I tried to explain what I had experienced to my sublimating my grief. It allowed me to redirect my emo- husband, I used the word “synchronicity” to describe it. tional ties fro 䁙ѡȁѼѡձ$ɽєȁ)Q́卡Ё ɰ)չ͕ѡ́Ёѡɍٕqѣtѡܵͥ胊qѡЁѡɔ(