My Nana was a very special woman, with special gifts. I lived with her for most of my childhood, and I always wondered how she knew before hand who was on the phone, or that someone would be visiting, or when I was in trouble.
One morning I woke early and came downstairs to get a drink of water. I heard gentle sobbing and followed the sound, my grandmother was sitting in the darkened living room crying. I rushed over to her and put my arms around her, "Nana, what's wrong?" I asked in dismay. She looked up at me, face red and blotchy from her tears and said, "Someone close has died."
I immediately panicked, and asked, "Who died Nana?"
She wiped her eyes on her apron and said, "I don't know yet, but I smelled roses during the night." Nana wiped her eyes again, and I knew someone close had passed, Nana always smelled roses when someone close to her passed away. The phone rang, startling both of us. We looked at each other and Nana answered the phone. I heard her say, "Oh no, Jim, not Florence." She sank into the chair beside the phone and tears started down her cheeks again. I realized that my great-aunt Florence had died.
As I grew older I saw less of my Nana. She had a stroke and ended up in a Nursing Home, I visited as much as I could. She had lost most of her memory and rarely knew who I was, but on one of my last visits she happened to see my graduation picture. I was leaving the room and I heard her say, "MY Shelly " I turned quickly back to her bed and saw that she was looking at the picture. By the time I got to her she didn't know me again. It was very difficult for me, but I knew that deep inside she loved me and I would always be in her heart.
I was in nursing school during this time and had a very hectic schedule. I had been insisting that my boyfriend take me to see "Gone With the Wind" which had been released again and was only showing for a short period of time. He finally agreed on the last night it was showing and we got to the theatre for the last showing. During intermission we went to the lobby for snacks and had just settled back into our seats for the second half of the movie at nine p.m. Not ten minuted into the film I had an overwhelming scent of roses, it was so heavy it made me nauseous. I looked at my boyfriend, and felt something was terribly wrong and insisted he take me back to the dorms right away. He looked at me as if I'd lost my mind. "Are you crazy," he hissed at me. "You've been on me for a month to see this movie, now you want to leave in the middle of it." I insisted, and he was very angry but took me home. All the way there I felt sick and worried but I couldn't identify why.
When I got to the dorms, our house mother was waiting for me. She came up and placed her arm around me. " Let's sit down dear, I'm afraid I have bad news for you." I knew before she could tell me, Nana had passed away. She told me the news and said they had received the call about nine ten p.m., approximately the same time I had the experience of the roses scent.
I have lost other family members over the years, but have never experienced the scent of roses with any of the other. I know in my heart, that was my Nana's way of letting me know she loved me and would always be with me.