July 30, 2008

Dreams and death

I went to my mother and she opened her arms and I hugged her (direct, with open heart, uncomplicated, as I had when I was a child). She sounded real and she smelled real and she felt real. I don’t recall her saying anything meaningful; I mean, she didn’t say "I love you" and she didn’t call me by my childhood nickname or anything like that. But I was so happy to see her again, the mom I hadn’t seen in more than 40 years. I woke up feeling good about that. Then I wondered if there had been a shard of symbolism in the timing of the dream. It was three months since Mom had died and it will be my older sister Mary’s birthday tomorrow. (Mary had died of thyroid cancer in 1996, at the age of 53, just barely).