Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Per Chance to Dream...

I awoke with a start. I was actually panting in my bed. It took me a minute to re-orient myself. Two seconds ago I was on the streets of New Orleans frantically searching for my children during Mardi Gras. Now I'm under covers, in bed with a dog against my back.

Whew! It was a dream... But it seemed so real! Real enough that it forced me to throw the covers off of me and pad through the dark into the kids' rooms.

I took a deep breath as I found each one sleeping peacefully, having (hopefully) sweeter dreams than mine. They each weakly protested by rolling over when I kissed their cheeks. It was if they were just too tired to say, "Cut it out, mom! I'm sleeping." But I didn't care. I was just relieved to see them.

My dream was one of those odd, shifting dreams that bounce from place to place, sometimes speeding up and sometimes moving in ultra-slow motion. I cried through the whole dream, but couldn't scream or make a noise. I just wandered and/or ran around crying and begging people to help me find my kids.

Somewhere in the dream I became just lucid enough to wonder how on earth my kids got to New Orleans during Mardi Gras and why in the world they would have been left alone anywhere for any amount of time. Poor hubby was thrown under the bus and put up for blame for the whole thing. When he slurred into my vision in my dream I was furious with him. And, as nightmares go, he was frustratingly calm and unconcerned about the whole thing.

In fact, when I awoke in my bed, I was still angry with him. And traces lingered like perfume for the rest of the day.

I'm sure in real time the whole dream lasted not more than a few minutes. But inside my dream, I was having a full-out panic attack for what seemed like hours. The end provided no relief. Nothing had been resolved. Even the knowledge that it had to be a dream (which I realized close to the end) didn't make the panic and fear lessen.

When it was truly time to get up, I made my way to each child's room with relief, thanksgiving and joy. I gathered them up in my arms and kissed their soft cheeks and smelled their sweet smells. I was so delighted to see that the morning light provided their safety and that we were all home.

The kids, however, were not happy about the intrusion on their sleep. They were peacefully lying in bed, dreaming happy dreams, when suddenly they scooped up and squeezed. Then whatever had them, began making kissing noises all over them and smelling their hair. Each one opened a sleepy, angry eye. "Stop it mom. Five more minutes," they said, trying to squirm out from my arms.

"Nope. Time to get up, sleepyhead," I smiled down at them.

"Come on, mom, just five, please???" they begged.

"Nope. Busy day. Gotta' go. Up and at 'em!"

"Okay," they relinquished. "But, seriously, get off me." They concluded with irritation.

I got up and shot angry glances at hubby in the hallway, leaving him to wonder what he had done that he didn't remember. And the kids shot irritated glances at me for waking them up by squeezing all of the air out of them.

All in all it was a great start to the day (ha). But it did get better from there. And I am going to make sure I don't eat whatever I ate last night ever again. I just don't think I could handle another trip to New Orleans during Mardi Gras with the kids...

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