Years ago, I was living in Hawaii, finishing my last semester in College. My son and I were living with another single mom and her daughter in a tiny one bedroom apartment in Honolulu. We lived next door to a cat lady, that literally fed hundreds of stray cats. As small as our space was, we made it work. The kids had a blast. Sharing meals, rides, Reiki, dance parties, and CAKE. We really had fun, I have many fond memories of that time.
Our kids went to the same school, a Montessori based charter school on the other ‘nicer’ side of town. My son was in 1st grade at the time, and he had a teacher named Mrs K. To be honest, at the beginning of the school year, when I found out my son was to be in Mrs. K’s class, I was scared. I had heard she was strict. And maybe in many ways she was strict, but she was the most loving woman. She loved her students, she loved the parents, she loved teaching. She taught the kids to be independent and accountable.
Anyways, after a nice winter break, I walked my son to his classroom. We were greeted by his teacher Mrs. K. We hugged and chatted about our holidays. It was so good to see her. I had no idea it would be the last time.
A few hours later, during the middle of class, and much to the confusion of the children, she was disoriented and suddenly unable to teach. She was whisked out of the classroom and into a nearby bathroom. The paramedics came and rushed her to the hospital.
In the afternoon, my son told me about his teacher getting ‘sick’. He asked if she would be ok. I thought, well, she is only 50 and she is Japanese, I replied ” Of course she will be fine.”
The next morning I woke up very early, and put on a hair mask. I have had very frizzy hair my whole life, and a friend had gifted me with a ‘Healing Hair Mask made with Placenta’. My goodness, it stunk so bad. But I put it on, kept it on, made the kids some pancakes with banana and raisin faces, and we headed to school. I thought I would be right back home,so I kept the placenta mask on my head. My thinking was, “the longer I keep this mask on the better”. WRONG.
Anyways, as we were driving to school my son said “Mom, when you were sleeping Mrs. K came into our bedroom but she told me not to wake you up.” Half listening, I replied something like “Oh, that’s nice honey.”
I parked the car, walked my son to his classroom, and quickly noticed a very somber energy. It was then that we learned Mrs. K had died. I was in shock. My son was 6 years old and someone he was very close to had just died. And there I was with this nasty stinky placenta mask on my head. The school had grief counselors, but even the counselors were crying. It was so emotional. And I was in the room, sitting on the floor, in a circle, with the parents and students, smelling so bad that I was making myself gag. It was not a good day.
The very next day, my roommates father died suddenly. The timing was very strange. The energy was very heavy. My roommate left the country to attend his funeral. It was extremely intense and confusing. Life. Death. Transition.
We attended Mrs. K’s funeral a week or so later. My son’s first funeral. The minister was a nightmare. He preached loudly to a full audience (mostly young children)about the importance of repenting to avoid going to hell. As awful as the minister was, attending the funeral was a very important part of the process.
Recently, my young niece’s gymnastics coach died in a motorcycle accident. For me, it has brought back a flood of memories of Mrs K, that time in our lives, and processing death with young children. With my son, I feel fortunate that he had a visit from his teacher’s spirit, I know that helped ease the pain.
Death is a part of our grand cycle. And I believe being honest with our children is very healthy. When we remember that this life is temporary, we spend our time wisely, act and react with kindness, and we never leave the house wearing a placenta hair mask.
I send out vibrations of Love and healing to any and all who need it. ~Yogini Tiff