she can hear it

Hi Mom,

I wish Oomah can come back to life and come to my show [on Thursday] when I sing happy.

– From Brooke’s email home from school yesterday afternoon

I wish Oomah could be there too. But just like you said, she’s always watching us so, in a way, she WILL be there. I love you so much.

– From my email back


{image is a photo of my girls kissing their Oomah}

It’s been nearly three months since my grandmother passed away. The time shocks me. That it’s been so long. That it’s only been three months. It feels like yesterday. It feels like forever.

The night before last, I came home late. Katie was in the den finishing her homework. Brooke was in my room, curled into my bed, scrolling through photos on her iPad. “I’m not feeling well,” she said.

“What’s the matter, kiddo?” I asked.

“It’s my voice,” she said, suddenly adopting her best impression of a frog with laryngitis.

“Hmm,” I said, “does anything hurt?”

“No,” she said, still trying to sound sick, “just my voice.”

I curled around her in the bed. “Do you think maybe you just need some quiet time?” I asked.

“Yeah,” she said, the frog gone as suddenly as it had arrived.

“I’ll be alone,” she said.

“Oh, okay. Do you want me to go?” I asked.

“No!” she said, grabbing my arm. “I’ll be alone with you.”

Taking the cue, I picked up my phone and fired up Soda Crush. Together, we’d be alone.

She opened a guitar app on the iPad and began strumming the strings. I stopped what I was doing, mesmerized by the music, which was surprisingly beautiful. She began to sing.

“Sleep, Oomah, sleep.”

My heart threatened to overflow. Her voice, the music, the gentle dance of her fingers over the strings on the screen – it was nearly too much.

I didn’t know yet what I would find out later, that the song was right out of an episode of Oobi. Oobi has a sleepover with a friend and his sister, Uma misses him. She calls him and he reassures her, singing her to sleep. That knowledge did nothing to diminish the moment, to lessen the love, to dilute Brooke’s message. There was a time I would have though the words less meaningful because they were borrowed. No more. Thank God no more.

“We are missing Oomah,” she said.

“I know, baby,” I said. “It’s hard to lose the people we love.”

She began to sing again.

“Sleep, Oomah, sleep.”

Fighting tears, I said, “I think Oomah would love that song, sweet girl.”

Still strumming the guitar strings, she answered, without a shred of doubt in her voice.

“She can hear it.”

11 thoughts on “she can hear it

  1. This is so wondrously beautiful and reassuring all in one I’m sitting here bawling my eyes’s ok. It’s all good.
    Treasure that girl you’ve got bc she utterly gets it. And you recreate the scene so well.

  2. I wish that Brooke (and all) would explore Energy Medicine . I believe, only from your wonderful expressive writings, that Brooke ALREADY is experiencing this teaching. Example: finding her calm. It has NOTHING to do with pills or voodoo or anything other than finding our inner path. Its all there… While snuggling, simple soft touch… Top of head, center of forehead, beneath her nose on her chin,… One of MANY practioners Donna Eden…. We will begin this with our little one who may be on the spectrum…

    • I hope this comment doesn’t come across as frivolous given the subject of this post. But since you posted the pictures of Brooke watching a video with the word “poo,” I wondered if she knew of the video UNICEF made to promote sanitation in India, called “Take the Poo to the Loo.” It is…like nothing I have ever seen before. But it’s certainly rated PG, and she might love it:

  3. I too, lost my grandma 3 and a half months ago, I’m sitting here crying as I read this. I was crying as I read the intro on Facebook and knew I had to read more. Lately I’ve been saying that Grandma is “here” when I’m going to a test I want to puke over or am just really really scared.

    So thank you, and Brooke, for that this morning

  4. Cool. I love the intuitive nature of children that are so in touch with what we lose touch with. Love to you and your family here and beyond.

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