Last night I had a dream in which I picked up a Parade magazine. That “magazine” that’s included in Sunday newspapers? On the back of the Parade magazine was a photo of my girls and my mother sitting at the side of what appeared to be a country road. It was shady and they were near a bridge; perhaps not under it but it was in the background.
The three of them were sitting side-by-side, with their legs out straight and my mom had her ankles crossed. Annie and Brigid were younger than they are now and they were first in the row and then my mom. My mom was dressed in her typical sort of mom clothes — slacks, a blouse and colorful sweater and of course she had her purse with her. The most striking aspect of the photo was that the girls were next to my mom but they were not touching and my mom was not in full color. The girls were in full color and my mom was in something I can best describe as a hazy sort of half color next to them.
In the dream, I was shocked at seeing the photo and had no idea when it had been taken. In the dream I was very, very sad and crying because I miss my mother. But this morning, in the shower I was thinking about it and I think it wasn’t just a dream. My mother was never one for grand gestures. Except for the Christmas she was going to surprise my sister Katie with a Coach bag; she hid it so well she couldn’t find it and we all spent Christmas looking for Katie’s purse. Anyway, I haven’t heard from my mother since she died almost four years ago but now I think I have and she is watching over my girls.
This dream reminds me of a visit from my dad. My dad died October 22, 2005. We didn’t really do much for Thanksgiving that year but the next year we rented a huge, incredible beach house and had dinner with friends and family. I think there were 25 or so people there and that’s very big for my family. One night while we were there, I had a dream that I was home, not a home I recognized but it was my home in the dream, my room. It was a basement room with windows up near the ceiling. I was lying in bed and I knew my dad was out for the evening. While I was lying there I heard him coming home, he walked by my window. And I saw just his legs, with suit pants on and a long rain coat and I could hear his footsteps. I thought, “I wonder if he will come in and say goodnight to me?”
In the dream, my bedroom door was opening and then in reality, the bedroom door of the beach house slammed shut and I was instantly jolted awake. And when I woke up I was filled with such joy. It could have been just a dream but because of the overwhelming feeling of pure joy that I felt upon waking, I have to believe it was a visit from my dad.
I wish I could illustrate this post because the images are so clear and permanent and vivid in my brain; but I know that any facsimile would never do them justice.