I must admit that I have never been a “spirit” person; one who thought that loved ones come back to speak to us. But in the past few months, I may have just changed my mind.

My mother-in-law died in mid-December. She experienced several heart attacks starting on Labor Day. All fall and winter, during her hospitalizations and recuperations, we spent many days and weekends at her house in central Maine. We would visit with her and then return to the house to sleep.

Now at this time, at the end of the driveway, there was a pole light that you could turn on from the front porch to guide visitors.

Often, it would flicker and go out, or just not go on at all. My husband checked the bulb and the fixture to no avail. We just figured that the plow had hit the underground cable during a snowstorm.

You can imagine our surprise, when on the very December night that she died, I turned on the light, and it came on. It has come on every night since. Perhaps her spirit was speaking?

Several years ago, my husband decided we needed a bit of central Maine in our South Portland back yard, so he dug up a root or two from the lilac bush from the backyard of his home.

We planted it, and faithfully waited and waited and found that we had plenty of leaves, but no blossoms. And yet, this spring, we looked and were amazed. The bush that had yielded no blossoms for so many years was quite full. Perhaps her spirit was speaking?

This winter and spring, most every weekend my husband and I traveled back to the house and worked sorting and packing. My mother-in-law had lived there for almost 70 years, with her mother and her grandmother, so there was much to do.

I made sure each granddaughter had a set of dishes and crystal. The grandsons received stamp collections and desks. I carefully went through all her clothes. I found 24 pairs of pants and 10 of them were purple — her favorite color.

Finally last week, we were ready to empty the house. I spent one day meeting the men from the service organization who had come to take all the remaining items from the house. I truly thought that I had emptied every bureau drawer and closet.

But at the end of the day, this very kind gentleman said, “I left what I found in a bureau drawer on that table.”

I looked and saw one more pair of pants. Yes, they were purple and, yes, I think she was speaking to me one more time.

We have a few milestones to go. We will experience a calendar year with requisite events without her — but if the past months are an indicator, I am quite sure she will be speaking to us.

– Special to the Telegram