Sunday, October 14, 2012

The Stuff of Dreams

She visited my home last night. We stood in the kitchen, preparing food together and laughing. We wore our matching aprons, those I had bought us at a church fair many years back. At one point, I caught her eyes. She looked at me and smiled, and I searched to see if she was really there. And then... I woke up. I’d broken the spell by looking too intently, by trying too hard, by wanting too much.

It was dark and I fought the urge to look at the alarm clock beside my bed. I rolled over, adjusting my pillow, willing myself to return to sleep, to return to the dream, to return to my kitchen, to return to her. I fell back into a dream but it wasn’t the same. This place was unfamiliar. I looked for her and although I found her again, she didn’t seem to see me. I looked around and I felt a chill. I didn’t like this new dream. I willed myself to wake.

I miss her terribly today. Each day I wake and move about my day, tending to my responsibilities, teaching my teens, caring for my children. But oh, I miss her so much. And so, fully awake, I go to my kitchen and pull out the pots and pans. I turn to her recipes. I look for her handwriting on those little 3x5 cards, and I am grateful it’s there. I make her soups, her cookies. But I wish she could be there with me.

It’s a powerful emotion. Here I am, 44 years old with a warm cookie-scented house and a beautiful family of my own...and I am homesick. I miss my Mom.

I call home and talk with my Dad. It’s always good to talk with him. He’s getting ready to watch his football game. Mom is upstairs, he says. I could ask him to put her on the line, but I know the phone is tough. We do better face to face. These dreams tell me that it’s time to go home, to go see them both. It’s only been two months since I saw them last, but it feels more like two years.

I’ll bring along some cookies perhaps, or maybe I’ll make some when I get there. If I’m lucky, she’ll join me in the kitchen, even if just to keep me company. I'll bring my apron and maybe she'll have hers. She’s always there with me when I fall into slumber, but being able to be there to hear her voice, to be able to look at her and to see her smile back at me...THAT’S the stuff of dreams.

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