I mentioned in a blog not long ago, Nature is My Balm, that my mother was dying. The service for her was today and I wrote the following words which were read out on my behalf by my brother-in-law. I know this is intensely personal, but I’ve decided to share this widely because ultimately we are all part of one big human family. The one certainty in life for each of us is that one day we will move on. I don’t see this as something to be saddened by. It is a time to celebrate the contribution each of us has made to this world and to wish each of us well on the next stage of the journey. May the following words have as much meaning to you as they’ve had for me and my family.


First, let me thank you all for being here to remember and to honour a beautiful woman, my mother, Audrey Haines. I know Mom would have appreciated…let me rephrase that. I know Mom appreciates the presence of each and every one of you. So do I.


What makes a woman like Audrey so special? It’s probably all the little things she did. Added up it becomes a big thing and a worthy contribution to creating a loving world.


I think my mother (and my father) gave a wonderful example of living out their dreams. After Dad’s early retirement from Bell Canada, they travelled each winter in their 5th wheel trailer, eventually finding a wonderful place outside of Tucson, Arizona to spend the colder months. They took up new crafts. Mom loved the connection she felt with Native American culture and she even made clay pots in the traditional way. She and Dad took over the reins of their hiking group, regularly leading people on diverse hikes in the stunning mountain scenery around their winter home. They were happy Snowbirds.


When Dad died in 2002, part of Mom died with him. The gap that she felt then was one none of us could adequately fill. Mom continued to live a good life and completed dreams including last year visiting the Panama Canal with Nancy. Mom had wanted to see this magnificent feat of human perseverance and engineering for a long, long time.


When I visited Mom in August and September last year, she was still quite healthy and she was still writing in her journal to Dad every night. He was her rock. She was his anchor. We might say she hadn’t let go and moved on. Mom had moved on—to a new way of being. love-for-mom1She had created a bridge through her belief and her writing with the other world and she continued to truly communicate with the man she loved despite their residing in different worlds. There is something quite special in this.


It has probably been mentioned already today but at the risk of repetition, on Mom’s last day in the Tillsonburg Hospital, she kept repeating, “Home, Jim.” I know she was met by Dad when she died and I am genuinely happy that they are truly reunited. There is no more powerful force in the universe than love and that force has brought these two special people together again. May you too realise that they are never further away than your next focused thought.


May we each honour my mother by doing as she did, by each day being a little more loving and by living out our dreams.


God bless.



John Haines is the author of In Search of Simplicity: A True Story that Changes Lives.

In Search of Simplicity is a startlingly poignant real-life endorsement of the power of thought, belief and synchronicity in one’s life.



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