The most special message I received in the grieving process: “He loved us, you know.” I know, Cedes♥
The last message I have from Derek is:
“You are a very special person, Hayley. Never forget that! You’ve played such a big role in my sister’s and my life! You still do as a very good friend. I love you so very much.”
Right after he became an angel, Derek visited me in a dream. It was in his high school gym full of people, he was dressed up. I saw him and started to cry. I tried to run towards him, but I could only walk slowly. The gym went silent, and it was just us. He stood there unmoving, smiling so big with a great light all around him. I could feel the warmth and happiness of his soul as I got closer, crying harder with every stride. I finally reached him and he was laughing, like throwing his head back laughing like a kid, smiling ear to ear and I was yelling at him to stop laughing. I told him that it wasn’t funny because he was gone, that he couldn’t stay, that he would have to leave me. He hugged me and I started sobbing at this point, full out ugly crying, and I couldn’t breathe. I could feel my tears soaking into his shirt ruining his nice dress clothes. I remember it felt so real, I felt the warmth of his hug and everything. He hugged me tight and kept laughing saying,
“I’m okay, it’s gonna be okay Hayls, I’m okay. It’s all good, everything is all good. I’m okay Hayls. You’re okay.”
In the dream I remember looking at him and saying, “No it’s not! It’s not okay. You’re not here. You’re leaving me. Please don’t leave again, please just stay here with me.” I wanted to cry even more but somehow, my tears started to dry. He kept smiling and looked at me and said,
“I know Hayls. You’re okay. It’s going to be okay. I love you. I have to go now.” He was still so happy.
Immediately after he said that, I jolted awake with a tear soaked face, but also with a sense of peace. That was the one and only dream I’ve had of Derek since he left us, and I have to believe it was him visiting me, showing me that he wants me to handle life with a smile, laughter, and radiant joy.
He would hate any sad talk. Honestly, he would tell me to cut it out. Every time my heart aches I think back to that visit and I know I have to be tough and strong and choose happiness. That’s who he was, and that’s how his soul lives on, by having the people he knew carry on his heart of gold. That dream I had became my reality, and has inspired the mantra “Dreaming With Reality” to work in my life. “DWR,” Derek Winn Russell.