I don't know.
It is not what we tend to think it is. Of that I am certain.
On December 29th, 2015 my beloved god-mother/teacher/sister/friend/kindred spirit/aunt/soul-mate left her body. Her spirit, always so strong, luminous and buoyant, had simply outgrown the body, like a caterpillar does its cocoon. I celebrate her transition and my heart selfishly grieves. I have often noticed when lovers part, that it is the one left who grieves the hardest, surrounded as they are by the reminders of a life created and shared together.
…Looking through the eyes of my two year old self at a white haired woman so filled with magic and laughter that all the world's petty concerns bow before her. She talks of fairies and angels and elves when all the adults around me talk of war and money and concern. Her world and my world…same, same.
…A boom of thunder forces me into bed beside her where we listen to rain and she explains the nature of light and its booming bravado at high speeds. Suddenly thunderstorms are friendly and full of magic.
...Parents fight and divorce, a young life in chaos... her arms and home are solid, unwavering and constant.
...Holidays highlighted by farm home packages wrapped in glittering tissue paper and angels, smelling of home (or musty if you possess less refined olfactory sensibilities).
...Apprenticing for years alongside her, learning the power of thought, word, feeling and meditation. Immersed in metaphysics, astrology, angels, ascended masters and more until those no longer satisfy. Then she smiles knowingly and says, "This has been my path Angelina. Yours will take you higher my bright and shining one!", certain as she always was that I was destined for soul greatness.
She has been my north star, my constant, and I have always been her beloved Angelina. She told me she would not leave until I was ready. She waited. And when my life bloomed into fullness, I was ready and the butterfly took flight.
I feel her now, as I write, her arms around me in an embrace so wide that all the universe dances in her love. Light waves of grief thunder across the sky of my love, but I'm not afraid. The salty tears, like rain, cascade down the windows of my heart, not because she is gone but because the little girl who lives in me still, can never again climb into bed beside her and feel the warmth of her body as we listen, together, for the heart beat of the world.
I love you Aunt Bertie, beyond time and space, beyond thought and belief. There aren't words sufficient to express my gratitude and so I will do, what I have always done, I will shine. I will love. I will live and I will continue to see through spirit eyes… a world luminous and full of love.