Letters from Rebekah
November 19, 2011
It’s a Sunday and I’m doing my job. Working on promoting this beautiful record that WE released on exactly 11/11/11. I am so amazingly thrilled about the wonderful journey I have been on this whole year.
I haven’t written an official letter for my website since this time last year because I’ve been writing updates and 11th of the month emails all year long so I’m sorry that I neglected to add them here in the form of a letter.
Well I’m writing now. I’ll add the updates here so then it’s as if they were here all along
I am sitting in my office, I’m surrounded by photos and memories of my entire career since I started in Hollywood in 1989.
I look up and I see a photograph of me and Elton John and sitting on that frame is a SAG card that belonged to Ms. Tammy Wynette. I’m so inspired by this. I have my marriage certificate, my vinyl record of Mulholland Drive, my very first residual check for 333.33 for my song in the soap opera Y&R, my Giant records jacket and cap that I received the Christmas before I left the record company. My copy of the photo of me and Sting, Elton & James Taylor singing together at Carnegie Hall.
A couple of clown noses on my desk, lots of stuff to look at.
My favorite to gaze upon here, in my office, where I spend up to 14 hours a day sometimes, is my beautiful beloved son Phillip. An oil on panel portrait that my husband made for me the Christmas after Phil passed away.
This is the most inspiring thing I have here. It helps me everyday to focus, to be grateful, to know that I am blessed in every way. Just being able to breath is such a wonderful gift. I learned this from Phillip.
Thank you Phillip for being my angel.
Here is a photo of what I see every day. Thank you for reading my letter today. I hope that it inspires YOU to enjoy your surroundings and find the blessing in every breath you take. (Sting pun intended)
Love & Light
p.s. soon that Giant Records memorabilia will be replaced with a Platinum Record Plaque to commemorate the Million sold (and over I’m sure) of the new Il Divo album, “Wicked Game”. I had the pleasure to be featured on this new album for a duet with them of my signature song “Llorando”. Can’t wait to be looking up at that! (just press pause below to stop audio)
THE PHILLIP CRAIG DEMARS & TERRY FOX CONNECTION:
In 2004, after my son Phillip graduated from High School. I sent him on a backpacking trip to Canada as a graduation present. We had an airline ticket that we needed to use before it expired and it was to Seattle so I arranged a trip for him to go to Canada as well. He took a ferry to Vancuver then one to Victoria for a short day trip. My son was 18 and he had a big lump in his right knee that no doctor could explain. We were not aware that it was cancer but he had been having such pain and difficulty for years with that knee. This trip to Canada was not an easy one but I felt he should explore and enjoy himself. So goin against my ‘overly protective Mom’ side, I let him go and I put him up in hostals and gave him his graduation cash. He was headed to Le Cordon Bleu Culinary Academy in the fall and this was his trip to check out a place where he one day wanted to open up a Bistro “Cafe 420″.. you figure that one out. haha
So off my baby went, on his first adventure, alone, with his little bag/backpack, his whole life ahead of him. He made it to Seattle, took the ferry to Vancuver. Then went on his day trip to Victoria. I received a postcard from him. It said “Moma, thank you for this trip! I’m loving it. My knee is killing me but I’m good, Mom. You’re the best Mom a guy could ever ask for, I love you” I was so thrilled for my little boy, who was turning into a young man right before my eyes. Upon his return, he had photos of him in Vancuver and tales of fun times with many new friends he had met along his way.
He fell in love with the Pacific NorthWest Coastal Haida Art and decided he was going to get a couple of tattoos of the art. His tattoos were absolutey BEAUTIFUL. I always wanted to discover Canada myself and told him that when he finished his schooling, we would take a trip there to scope out the restuarant spaces for him.
The following year we received the biggest blow to our lives. Phillip was diagnosed with Stage IV Sarcoma. It was in his right knee and had metastisized to his other extremeties and his lungs. The doctors gave him 6 months to live. We were completely overwhelmed with his diagnosis and set out to find any and all ways to save his life. We created a site to help others www.thephillipdemarscancerfund.com 4 years later, my son spent his last week on this planet in a hospital, barely able to breathe. On his deathbed, we spoke of what he wanted for his funeral, his remains, his legacy. He specifically requested that I spread his ashes on the shore of Victoria where he once had put his legs in the water. He did not know exactly where it was but that it was near a park, had a staircase that led down to a very beautiful spot where he saw the islands of Vancuver across the water, the sand was rocky, there were huge bolders in a semi circle and large pieces of driftwood to sit on. He said “Moma, if you don’t have the money, that’s okay, just do it when you can. You’re really gonna love Victoria” I asked him to draw me a picture of it. He did. My son passed away shortly there after. In my arms. It will always be the most special moment in my life, along with his birth.
With the help of many of my friends & adopted family. I was able to make his last wish come true. I went to Victoria. I asked the bed & breakfast owner if they could help me find this shore with the stair case, park and driftwood. He said that represented about 20 miles of the shoreline. Well, they dropped me off and told me “this is mile 5, you should be able to find the place if you walk along the coastline” I had no idea what he meant by mile 5, I thought it was a street name. So off I went, on the shoreline, walking and listening to my son’s ipod. He had some funny songs. Lot’s of hip-hop and some Jack Black too. I think I heard “Dude I totally miss you” about 20 times. It was comforting but made me cry. I cried and laughed just picturing Phil singing that song with me. We used to LOVE that song. I was carrying his backback and some water. Walking and walking just trying to ‘feel’ it out. I kept talking to him (like a crazy person). Is this it Phil? I’d get this feeling that “no” was what he would say… so I kept going. I walked and walked. I was so exhausted after a couple of hours. I sat down and said “Alright Phil, I’m tired now and I’m hungry and I have to go to the bathroom, this has got to be it” I heard him say “no Moma, just go over those rocks, around the corner, then you can stop” uuugghh.. Okay Phil… I climbed the bolders and went around the corner and there it was… the picture he had drawn out for me. It was EXACTLY as it looked in the drawing. The staircase was right there, the huge driftwood. His knee was really hurting him so he wouldn’t have walked too far to put his legs in the water. He said he went down a staircase and boom there it all was.
So this was the FIRST staircase that I saw so close to the type of area he had described. All the other stair cases led to the shore but they didn’t have the U-shaped area like he told me his special place had. So this had to be IT! I set my stuff down and began to play Jeff Buckley’s version of Hallelujah and I got a stick and traced Phil’s initials in the sand. PCD… I waited for the time to be exactly 11:11 to spread his ashes. I released my baby back to where he came from. Nature. He was finally free. No more pain. I cried and I was overjoyed that I really felt this was the place. I was almost sure of it. I took one of my empty water bottles and I filled it up with the water that had Phil’s ashes to take home with me (I put it into an airport approved sized bottle later) That was an impulse, I guess I just didn’t want to let him go.
Well I was quite tired at this point and hungry and the need to go to the bathroom sent me up the staircase and low and behold, there was a park directly across from the staircase. (there are many parks but they are not all directly across from a staircase leading down to the shore and I wouldn’t have known it anyway since I walked for miles on the shore without ever going up a staircase to see if there was a park there, I discovered all this later from the inside of a taxi cab) There was what looked like a man standing in the middle of the park, so I figured I’d ask him for information on where the nearest restroom was. I was b-lining to the park when a tour bus came around the corner and it parked in front of the park. It’s sign read “hop on/hop off, pay driver” This was totally perfect! When the tourists exited the bus I hopped on and asked the driver how much it would cost me to go downtown. He said that he was at the last stop of his trip and he would take me for free since he was going that way anyway. YAY!
Well you wouldn’t believe what happened next. The tourists got back on the bus. The busdriver began to drive ahead and a tape recording started. The recorded voice said something to the effect of “This last stop was Mile Zero, where our Natioanal Hero, Terry Fox was going to finish his Marathon of Hope to help find a cure for cancer. Unfortunately, Terry did not make it to Mile Zero. He lost his battle with cancer due to the spread to his lungs just 1 month shy of his 23rd birthday. WHAT????? I couldn’t believe it!!! I started to bawl. This WAS the spot that Phillip wanted me to lay his ashes down. Why didn’t Phil tell me about this Terry Fox??? Why didn’t he just say, “Mom, put my ashes where the Terry Fox monument is, ‘kay.. he’s a guy that had Sarcoma in his right knee just like me and then he passed away”.. WHY?? Because Phillip didn’t know about it. Phillip didn’t know he had Cancer when he went to Victoria. If Phil knew about Terry, he would have definitely saved me the trouble of searching for some unknown spot from a mere drawing and told me EXACTLY where to go. But he didn’t know. I didn’t know anything about Terry Fox. I couldn’t believe how uncanny it was. The bus driver asked if I was okay. I told him what I had just done and he was really sad to hear about my son and shocked that I didn’t know about Terry Fox and the serendipity of it all. Well I know about him now.
I went about visiting Victoria and picked up some of the Haida art in cards and a mug/bag and a sticker. (I didn’t have any funds to buy much) I was in awe of that beautiful journey my son had just sent me on. I couldn’t get his laptop to work and there was a teenager on the community computer at the B&B so I didn’t look Terry up until I got home. I discovered after reading Terry’s whole story, that he had taken a water bottle full of the Atlantic ocean and had planned on pouring into the Pacific Ocean at Mile 0. Exactly where I was and I had taken that water just as a token for my alter. How weird is that?
I later recalled while looking at old photo albums of my son. When Phil was a little boy, he used to run around the house saying he was running a marathon. Interesting…. I even wrote on the caption of the photo “Phil running a marathon AGAIN” that was in the early 90′s. Well I have come to believe that Phillip’s soul may have been Terry’s soul. It seems that he finished off what he came here to do. I do wonder when he’ll return.
30 years later, I would like to have a Terry Fox / Phillip Craig DeMars run for hope. If we could raise 11 Million dollars in 2011 for the research and cure for Sarcomas and all Cancers, that would be AMAZING. Terry asked that every Canadian give 1 dollar. If we could ask every American to do this, WOW! According to the Census, there are 310,860,477 people in the US of A. I think a goal of 11 million dollars is possible. I will let everyone know when and where that will be taking place in 2011. Visit The Terry Fox Foundation for more info on how you can help. Stay tuned for more…
November 11, 2011
The Story behind 11:11
On March 7, 2004, my son’s 18th birthday, our 11:11 phenomena began. He had not been diagnosed with cancer yet and his whole life was ahead of him. He was going to graduate Eagle Rock High and go off to Culinary school (Le Cordon Bleu) then start his own restaurant in Victoria, Canada… So on this special day. He wanted to go for a drive and see where it took us. We were parked right in front of our house. We got in the car and Phil said “look Momma, it’s 11:11″ I looked at the clock radio and sure enough it was. I had NEVER seen that before. I said “that’s cool Mi’jo, one one one one” and then we took off for our mystery road trip.
We didn’t exactly know where we were headed but I had some ideas up my sleeve. I thought I’d take him to San Juan Capistrano and then over the Ortega Highway through the Cleveland Forest and then over to Lake Elsinore. He loved nature and I love long road trips. We did exactly that and some other random fun sight seeing. On the way home travelling on the 15, Phil spotted an Outlet mall. I said “hey Mi’jo, you want me to buy you some birthday clothes?” Of course the answer was ‘yes’. it was a 163 mile road trip.. wow.. by the time we were in L.A. Phil was fast asleep.. he fell asleep in the car all the time, since he was a baby. Well you’ll never believe what happened when we got home…We parked in front of the house … same place we took off from. I reached over and touched Phil’s shoulder and said “Hey Birthday boy, we’re home.. c’mon.. Mi’jo get up” He woke up and right away he says “Mom, look it’s 11:11″.. I looked over and it WAS 11:11 AGAIN!!! I couldn’t believe it.. it was super strange.. imagine?? I had never seen it before that morning.. and here we were, in the same exact spot, after having gone all over the place (randomely I might add) and we wind up looking at the clock at exactly 11:11, twelve hours later.. it was super spooky. It was a magical and really funny day.
Since then we saw this number almost every day. turns out it’s very special. Phillip at first thouht it was all in my mind but then HE started seeing it without me, he very much connected with the number 1111 … We found out that these numbers represent angels watching over you and your destiny. We decided that if he were to pass, that would be OUR sign. Now whenever I see this special number or 111, 222, 333, 444 or 555.. I KNOW he’s sending me a message and telling me I’m going to be okay and that he’s watching over me. Here’s an incredible example of one of Phil’s many 1111 messages: On the eve of his 1 year anniversary of his passing, we were buying some flowers and such for his meditation garden and the total came to 111.11~
I kid you not!
I’ve also seen 11:11 on clocks that are not set at the right time and recently my mobile phone froze on 1:11 mysteriously. Is it though, is it really? I think not. So if you ever see this, think of your loved ones watching over you and know that they are guiding you toward your destiny.
So with all of these 1111 prompts, I decided that 2011 was the year for me to release my long awaited album “Love Hurts – Love Heals” it’s my heart’s journey with my son, in song. I hope you all enjoy it and JOIN ME in spreading love & light by helping at least 11 people today (and any other day if the spirit moves you)
Sending you ALL Love & Light Rebekah Del Rio 11:11