In January, I knew something wasn’t right when she sent me a text saying he had shown up at her house to surprise her. While Dan resided in Iowa and she lived in Minnesota, they continued to have a close relationship headed toward marriage. The plan was 2021 for that. When they met, she was under the impression that he had gone into remission after a cancer scare. If you knew him, it was as if the diagnosis never existed. He said he was healed, and she believed him. After years of never being married and single, she let him into her life.
He refused to give in to what he had been told so many years prior that he only had relied on his faith and no medical intervention. He was way past the false expiration date the doctor had proclaimed and held tightly onto God’s hand to live as if he was cancer free. He concealed some information to protect her, but also because he was adamant about not letting a physician’s opinion define him. She didn’t feel betrayed by that because she loves him so much.
They traveled and spent as much time together as possible. He could fix and build anything, which is one of the things he loved to do the most. Even in severe pain, he would always be willing to get a hammer or another tool to accomplish a job just because someone needed him.
On that cold January day, when he showed up out of the blue, she was happy to see him, but then she realized how off his balance was. When he fell and cut himself, she had fear strike as she cleaned up the blood and applied a bandage.
She wasn’t too pleased that he was smoking cigarettes either. It seemed out of character and reckless. None of this was like him at all.
She decided to follow him back to Iowa, driving behind him to ensure he stayed on the road. She called me so frazzled; I wasn’t sure if they would make it to their destination, but somehow they did.
He had come to get her and had not told her everything that was going on. Shortly after, he fell again, fracturing his elbow. This incident led to a hospitalization where the doctor gave him the ultimatum: hospice or radiation therapy. The chemo he had finally opted for wasn’t working.
Unknown to Jeanne, he had a tumor in his brain. The cancer was spreading, but with his fighting spirit, he chose radiation. He was not giving in at all.
At this time, I asked God a question without realizing what I was fully getting into.
“Show me what you see, God. What is happening?”
I instantly saw a man with his head bowed as if in prayer, holding a fedora. One of those old fashioned hats from a time long ago. This wasn’t my first experience doing something like this, and I knew the hat was significant. It represented a period that this man had been on the earth, and he was standing by.
I opened my eyes and told my daughter what I had seen. She said she saw the exact image. Using resources at her fingertips, she went online and found a picture of Dan’s father. That was the man, and his dad had gone on to heaven a while ago.
“I’m not certain what this means, but I am not telling a soul! It’s like he is waiting for him,” I said.
Anytime I went inward and wondered what reality was, this is what came. And as the days went on, it got stronger. It was as if I was standing in a room of all white, and he was advancing closer to me, in the same posture, with his hat in his hands in reverence.
I didn’t like it because I knew this wasn’t the outcome that they wanted to hear. They longed for him to be healed and made whole on earth. When I would see all the posts on social media of all the prayers being sent up for Dan’s restoration, I felt guilty for not joining in. God had put a gag order on me. I was only to discuss what I saw with my daughter and no one else. I was to keep silent until I was given the nod from heaven to say anything.
I checked in multiple times a day to see where his dad was in relation to me in the waiting room. Then, a second man appeared. Side by side, they stood with the exact same look, but I also saw them laughing. Quietly, their shoulders moved up and down as if they had a funny inside joke between them.
Once again, an online search revealed this other person looked like Dan’s grandfather. Within moments of this discovery, I got a text from Jeanne:
“Dan and I just got married.”
She had told me they were going to wait until he had recovered.
“I married us in his hospital room. We said our vows, and it’s not legal, but in God’s eyes, we are married.”
She sent me a laughing emoji. Now I knew why the men were giggling.
“Good for you guys!”
They both changed their status to married, which created an uproar from their friends who wondered what in the world was happening. It was a much needed lighter moment during this.
She spent many miserable days fighting ice and snow to make the drive to the hospital to be with him. He asked her repeatedly to agree with him for a miracle. And like a good wife, she never failed to do as he asked.
She would call me while in the car and alone, crying her heart out. In his presence, she was absolutely strong, but when the day was over, she needed to get it all out.
I held my secret and did not indicate what I knew was coming. I would never go against what God had told me to do, and the timing had to be right. So I asked questions and let her openly grieve.
Meanwhile, these heavenly helpers were now as near to me in my vision as possible, and I knew beyond a shadow of a doubt that Dan was about to leave. So many times, I wished I was wrong, and I was hoping I was. But I had asked to see the truth, and my daughter kept confirming everything.
When hospice became the only option left, he was placed in his daughter’s home. Jeanne remained near him day and night, even getting up at two in the morning to get him the ice cream that he loved.
On Friday, February 19, after almost an entire month of all of this, I heard:
“Tell Jeanne about the fedoras you see in their hands.”
I could not fathom I was about to do this. I knew they still believed in a complete reversal.
I had a hard time seeing as I wrote:
“Did Dan’s dad wear a fedora? Can you ask him?”
A response came back that he did have one that he had worn. I went on to tell her about the two men waiting to carry Dan into heaven. I had gone weeks knowing this and at times felt so frustrated by it. Now I was telling her, and I didn’t want to.
I felt I was risking my entire friendship with her. The only thing I had going for me was that I had been sending her messages from God to encourage her, and she always would say..oh! I just heard that for myself too! So on some level, she knew I wasn’t wrong.
After she asked Dan about the fedora, he lost his ability to verbalize. I was so grateful I had not resisted and asked, or I would have never known. I went to bed Friday night late, wondering where this was all going.
On Saturday around 6 am, I felt a sharp, persistent poke on my left shoulder.
“Chris, wake up! Ask Jeanne how long she has known Dan.”
I flipped over. No. It’s early; she is worn out and probably sleeping.
Again the weird poke in the shoulder on the other side and the same thing requested. This went on for 45 minutes. Me saying no and being harassed to wake up, just like when my mom always tried to get me up for school.
I gave in, picked up my phone, and sent:
“How long have you and Dan been together? Would it be 3 years? 3 years in September?”(6:42 am)
While I waited for her response, I heard the sound of water, and I saw a beautiful steamship. Dan’s spirit was sitting up on the side of his bed, getting ready to link arms with his dad and grandpa, who were now wearing their fedoras. They were going to board the ship to go to heaven. Dan said,
“You are a good friend to Jeanne. I will always love her. I can speak and send messages to her if she allows it. I know she will miss me, and I want to help her with everything still. I see I can do more from the spirit than I ever could in my body that is limited. Take care of her. You are a good friend to her.”
“I will, Dan. I promise.”
Jeanne answered my text:
I met him in Oct 2017. We got together Oct 25
I began writing out my response, but I was also watching Dan leave. He even had a suitcase that went with him. This was all done to make the move easier. Familiar people and everyday objects help.
I saw him link arms with each man to leave the room. He took one last look at his body lying in bed. And he shrugged as if to convey…well, that’s over, and it’s ok.
They passed through the wall. He stood at the walkway up to the ship, and he was in awe. I heard him say: What a beautiful boat this is!
He walked arm and arm with each man. Strong, proud, and tall. He was so happy to be on the move again, having the ability to walk.
I saw him standing at the back of the boat, hanging onto the rails, looking from where he came. The wind was blowing through his hair. He was smiling, and he said: I feel so surrounded by love. Warmth and love.
I sent my response to Jeanne:
I’m glad you made room for him in your heart. I said this a few weeks ago, and I will say it again…this was a decision that a lot of women wouldn’t have signed up for. They would have run away and missed it entirely. Not you. You have planted yourself firmly into the place that God asked you to be. (7:19 am)
She immediately sent at the same moment: Just took his last breath (7:19)
I know (7:19)
I saw him laughing and looking at the views around him. Both men laughed with him. The wind continued to blow through his hair.
I heard the sound of the boat horn. I was standing on a dock watching it leave, going over toward the horizon. I saw Dan smiling and waving. He looked so amazed by what was all around him. His head was back, looking up and then to each side. Like he couldn’t move fast enough to take it all in. The boat became just a speck. I saw the last puff of smoke from the ship. I heard the water up against the dock I was on as the sun shone beautifully off the water.
Then I was back in my bed staring at the ceiling. He had made it, but I had to help rescue his other half.
I met her in a parking lot to help her get back home.
As she hugged me and we cried, I said,
“I was so worried you would hate me if I told you he was going to heaven.”
“No. You told me at the right time. If you had said it before you did, I wouldn’t have accepted it.”
During our drive, we talked about how I saw him leave on a ship.
“He loved boats, and he wanted me to go on a cruise with him. I didn’t want to.”
I had no idea.
As the miles went by, she told me that if I hadn’t texted her, she would have missed his last breath; she had fallen asleep and forgot to set the alarm for his next dose of morphine. My message had jolted her awake and into his room.
I knew the months ahead of her were going to be difficult, but she had carried out the assignment she had been given; happily, she had taken it on in full.
She now has a bond between heaven and earth that can never die. Dan is not gone and never can be. She has come to find out that it’s only a transition.