Searching for meaning


It was a strange dream in many ways. I dreamed Caitlin was receiving the sacrament of Confirmation, which is strange because she was not raised Catholic. Confirmation is a sacrament in which the person is asked to confirm promises made by the parent at baptism. In essence the person is asked if they want to be a member of the church; to be a follower of Jesus Christ. Of course, dreams are never straight forward, and least of all this one.

In the dream I was supposed to prepare Caitlin to receive the sacrament. I also had to give a sermon, or a talk about the sacrament and its meaning at her confirmation ceremony. It was a dream about faith, spirituality, and about family and forgiveness.

Caitlin’s father, my brother, Chris, was killed when a drunk driver crashed into his van as he was headed home from work two years ago. In my dream several family members were interrupting my speech to talk about Chris, not to dishonor the proceedings but because many are still grieving and healing.

The name, Christopher, my mother often told us, means Christ-bearer. That also came up in my dream. As the dream progressed Bob Marley’s tune, Redemption kept playing. So, what was the message I was being given? Confirm the Christ Bearer? Confirm Christ? Forgiveness? Redemption? Family?

There’s a lot to tease out of this dream. It is the 23rd of December and Christmas is approaching. But the dream was not about Christmas per se, even though it is the day we celebrate the birth of the Saviour. But Christmas does put a lot of emphasis on family with the Holy Family taking front and centre, or at least it does in most Catholic households.

I am searching for meaning – not just of my dream, but of life itself; of spirituality and what divine love means to me.

May this Christmas bring peace to us all and to our world that is in dire need of peace and love and all things good.

Connect; disconnect


Life is a funny thing – full of ups and downs. Some days I am fully present to the people I interact with, my listening skills are well honed and I am fully available; on other days, not so much. Some days it’s like a light switch going off and on, off and on. The next court date is this Friday. I am dreading it. I won’t be there to hold a hand or offer a shoulder. I will have to rely on family members to fill me in afterwards. It’s hard being so far away. But I am grateful for my siblings who keep me in the loop, so to speak. I think the worst thing about losing a loved one in such a senseless manner is the continuing saga of grief that has me by the throat in a vice-like grip. I can put it on the back burner in order to continue daily activities like work. I am grateful to have a job that offers distraction from the ever present reality of loss. There have been many deaths in our family – but this is infinitely worse than anything I’ve experienced before. When death is so preventable it leaves a bitterness behind. We are all working through it the best way we can. Impaired drivers take the lives of others on an almost daily basis. I just hope we can find meaning in the death of our brother and I look forward to days when I can fully connect without that light switch going off.