We (that is me and Bryn’s brother) often see tiny little white fluffy feathers when we are out and about. I once told Rafferty that some people think these feathers are left by their loved ones who have died. And those loved ones leave the feathers as little signs to let us know they are thinking about us or some other message.
Rafferty was 4 when Bryn was born and just shy of his 5th birthday when he died.
I remember when the guy from the hospice brought round the cold bed Rafferty thought putting Bryn on there would make him better. I realised we hadn’t uttered the words ‘Bryn is dead’ and through the fog of my grief and floating along a path I didn’t know how to traverse, I told him, ‘see Bryn is dead, see he isn’t breathing, feel how cold he is he is dead’
Over the 7 days Bryn stayed with us Rafferty held Bryn and felt how cold he was and I do truly think that helped him understand what had happened and how final death is.
It’s only having a child to explain things to that sometimes you really wonder about different societies rituals around death. We chose a burial in a woodland. Rafferty came with us and helped choose the plot. We painted pictures to go with Bryn in his little casket.
It wasn’t until by accident (are things ever ‘by accident’) that we were in a local library one day and I picked up a book called ‘Goodbye Mog’ - not really thinking at the time what it might be about. But yes it turned out Mog had died and the story was about after they buried her body how a little part of her was left with the family and she helped the new kitten settle in. I still remember the look on Rafferty’s face as he listened to this story. He kind of BOUNCED out of the library – ‘so Bryn is here looking down on us and looking out for us and can he go and look out for our friends too?’
It felt great, really great to have found something for him to think of and understand and it helped me pen up to let him know what I believed when people died. (someone said to me it is ok, Rosie, to tell him what you believe )
so that brings us back to the feathers, we find these feathers EVERYWHERE, and yes I guess they are just fallen downy feathers from a bird but it does create a little feeling of warmth a little hug to myself to see these feathers.
Rafferty loves them, we collect them mostly and put them on our Future table (it was orginally a Nature table but has been renamed by Rafferty)
The other day I said to him ‘I always thought that these feathers were left on special occasions rather than all the time’
His reply was perfect ‘It’s because Bryn loves us mum, every morning he spawns these feathers in to remind us how much he loves us’
(side note : the ‘spawns in’ is a reference to that ever popular game Minecraft, where you can ‘spawn’ items in to the world you inhabit in the game)