‘Symbols and signs…’ 

I search my days for those tell tale signs that my beautiful brown eyed boy still surrounds his family with love and protection from afar. So many things hold secret messages in them as they appear throughout the day. The random sighting of a car number plate COB (his nickname is Cobby), numbers 222 – the Angel number, the numbers when you happen to glance at a digital clock 11.11 the opening hours to send a personal message to Heaven and 9.11 being a very spiritual number, if a white feather appears at your feet, butterflies, dragonflies and significant songs that come on the radio at random times that contain messages in the words. 
I feel very connected to the beach and ocean since Jacob is now a part of that space. I relish in looking at all the creations of colour that live under the sea – in the shells, the fish and all the colours. At Jacob’s celebration of life we read out the story of the water bugs/dragonflies and now I have a string of solar powered dragonflies hanging near the window in the family room where he passed away. They have a great significance to me now. I will share with you the story here called ‘water bugs and dragonflies’ by Doris Stickney:
Down below the surface of a quiet pond lived a colony of water bugs. They were a very happy colony, living far away from the sun. For many months they were very busy, scurrying over the soft mud on the bottom of the pond. They did notice that every once in awhile one of their colony seemed to lose interest in going about. Clinging to the stem of a pond lily it gradually moved out of sight and was seen no more. 
“Look!” Said on of the water bugs to another. “One of our colony is climbing up the lily stalk. Where do you think she is going?” Up, up, up it slowly went…even as they watched, the water bug disappeared from sight. It’s friends waited and waited but it didn’t return…
“That’s funny!” Said one water bug to another. “Wasn’t she happy here?” Asked a second…”where do you suppose she went?” Wondered a third. No one had an answer. They were greatly puzzled. Finally one of the water bugs, a leader in the colony, gathered it’s friends together. “I have an idea.” The next one of us who climbs up the lily stalk must promise to come back and tell us where he or she went and why.” “We promise,” they said solemnly. 
One spring day, not long after, the very water bug who had suggested the plan found himself climbing up the lily stalk. Up, up, up, he went. Before he knew what was happening, he had broken through the surface of the water and fallen onto the broad, green lily pad above.
When he awoke, he looked about with surprise. He couldn’t believe what he saw. A startling change had come to his old body. His movements revealed four silver wings and a long tail. Even as he struggled, he felt an impulse to move his wings…The warmth of the sun soon dried the moisture from the new body. He might end his wings again and suddenly found himself up above the water. He had become a dragonfly! 
Swooping and dipping in great curves, he flew through the air. He felt exhilarated in the new atmosphere. By and by the new dragonfly landed happily on a lily pad to rest. Then it was that he chanced a look below to the bottom of the pond. Why, he was right above his old friends, the water bugs! There they were scurrying around, just as he had been doing some time before.
The dragonfly remembered the promise: “The next one of us who climbs up the lily stalk will come back and tell where he or she went and why.” Without thinking, the dragonfly darted down. Suddenly he hit the surface of the water and bounced away. Now that he was a dragonfly, he could no longer go into the water…”I can’t return!” He said in dismay. “At least, I tried. But I can’t keep my promise. Even if I could go back, not one of the water bugs would know me in my new body. I guess I’ll have to wait until they become dragonflies too. Then they’ll understand what has happened to me, and where I went.” 
And the dragonfly winged off happily into its wonderful new world of sun and air….
I like to think that the dragonfly that visited me on a trip to Cairns with my husband and followed my daughter Amy at Alice Springs was a special visitor from Heaven. ‘When spying on a dragonfly dancing on air, your guardian angel is hovering near.’ 

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