A late night date with my dead husband.
1. Those who've never had a dream about their spouses.
2. Those who have and love those dreams.
3. Those who have and sometimes have difficulty rebounding from them.
I fall into the third category. I (usually) LOVE the dream as it's happening. I'm sometimes just talking to my husband. Or he might just be there in the background.
Other times I found out that he's just been out of town and I immediately forgive him for letting me think he was dead (which, let me tell you, I would never do in real life).
Many times in my dream I'm thinking about all the explaining I'm going to need to do - the move, dating, buying furniture I know he'll hate - but I'm always falling over myself, forgiving him for taking off for the past 10 years.
I wake up disappointed. No, wait. That's the wrong word. Crushed. Sunk. I do everything I can to go back to sleep. And then face what I know will be an off day.
But usually I'm okay the day after. It's kind of like when you dream you've had a fight with someone. You're pissed when you wake up and then your subconscious shrugs it off and everything goes back to normal.
I don't know what it was about this particular dream, but I woke up shocked. Yes. SHOCKED. The first thing I thought was, "My God, I haven't seen him in 10 years." And the next thing I thought was, "I don't know when I'll see him again."
Which was a crushing blow.
I know what you're thinking. It's been 10 years. TEN YEARS. And this is just coming as a shock to me now?
I completely understand why you're confused. Because so am I. Am I really just now digesting the fact that I actually won't see him again?
I have no idea. But it does feel like that initial shock. So while I'm normally able to shake this off by the second day, today has me feeling more drained and weepy than I did yesterday. I feel like my soul has been pummeled and, the truth is, I'm really not sure when I'm going to snap out of this.
See, this is what most people don't understand.
So, after I had that crazy realization ten years after my husband's death that I actually wouldn't be seeing him again, the next thought that popped into my brain is, "But I want to be with him RIGHT NOW."
Now, I've read posts by other widows who've said the same thing and my first thought is that they could be suicidal. I mean, when someone says they want to be with someone who is dead, what does that say to you?
But really for the first time yesterday morning, I kind of got it. I just wanted to be with him. I was so homesick for him that it was a physical ache. And if he can't be with me...why can't I be with him? I wasn't feeling like I wanted to leave this world; I have a great life, wonderful kids, friends I adore, and I'm having a new sofa delivered next week.
No, I don't want to die. I just want to be with my husband.
And I know there are many of you out there who will understand what I mean.
As if that wasn't enough.
This morning I got my kids off to school and I stretched out on my couch. I closed my eyes and I willed myself to go back to sleep, just for a few minutes.
Yes, I was tired (it takes me three hours to get all three kids going to school because of different start times. By the time they leave I already feel like I've put in a full day). But I realized that one of the main reasons why I was trying to get a little catnap in was to see if I could dream about my husband again.
Again, I know what you're thinking.
"She's saying she wants to be with her dead husband and now she's sleeping all of the time. Does anyone know the name of her therapist??"
I know, I know. And I'll call her in the next few days if I can't shake this off.
But it really doesn't come from a place of depression - I just figured if that's the only place I can see him, I might as well give it a try.
Of course, once I got a grip on what I was doing, I popped up, took my shower, and got on with my day. And when I started my car to run my errands, "our song" was on the radio.
I couldn't help but give myself a watery smile in the rearview mirror.
And then I said to the empty (?) car, "Thanks. But it's just not the same."