Our kitchen is sprinkled with rainbows right now. My mother gave me a teardrop-shaped prism that we hang in our kitchen window. When it catches the sunlight each morning, it splatters chunks of rainbows everywhere. Eli, Lauren, and our cat, Zoe, giggle as they try to catch the ever-elusive rainbow in their hands and paws. If they only knew how important rainbows are to our family. . .
As a rational woman of science, I understand that rainbows are a scientific phenomenon, but in our family, rainbows are gifts sent from our angels in heaven. Rainbows seem to pop up right when we need them. Sometimes they appear out of nowhere--on a sunny day, after a thunderous storm, or a sprinkling rain. But, I am convinced that someone in heaven sends us rainbows as a symbol of never-ending love.
My family's fascination with rainbows began on my wedding day, January 18, 2003 in Columbus, Ohio. The coldest day of the year, frigid and frosty. I woke up in the Holiday Inn, and my mom pulled me over to the window. "You HAVE to see this!" Against the backdrop of a vivid blue sky was the most brilliant rainbow I had ever seen. A giant arc framed the downtown skyline. Not a cloud in sight, just crystalline frost clinging to the window.
"Its from your grandpa, I just know it. He's here with us today." My mom's words cut deeply to my heart--my grandpa died two weeks after I met my husband. They never met, but I am certain they would have shared a special relationship. Despite my complete and utter joy at my impending nuptials, my heart hung a bit heavy. My first major life event I was experiencing without Grandpa. But, that rainbow told me he was with me. And, as I walked down the aisle toward my future husband, I carried his presence deep within my soul.
Rainbows seem to appear right when I need them most--my heart may be aching, my soul needs a lift, grief threatens to overtake my spirit. But, someone above recognizes that I need to believe, that I need some strength to move forward. A reminder of how love and pain intersect, even if only momentarily. I love the quote, "The soul would have no rainbows had the eyes no tears." Each time I see a rainbow splashed across the sky, I realize that to really know joy, you must experience some pain. While my heart aches for my angels up in heaven, I am comforted by memories. . . . and that big arc of color dancing across the sky.