'Let me tell you about the dream I had last night.' How often have we heard someone say this exact sentiment, and then proceed to tell you about their dream.
Today was just another day, get up to the alarm clock, shower and get ready for work; then head out the door, pick up a coffee and something to eat, and start my work day. Pretty much the same as many of you. However today, when I arrived at work, someone called me and proceeded to tell me they had had a dream and needed to tell me about it. Okay, I game.
As she began to recount her dream, she told me she had dreamed about Rachel. In her dream Rachel was posing for a painting. Rachel proceeded to tell her that she was doing this for Lucas, her nephew, it was a painting for him. She then asked Rachel, 'Have you been visiting your mom?' Rachel replied, 'No just visiting Lucas, I'm doing this for Lucas.'
Lucas is my grandson, he is just over a year old and has only met his Auntie Rachel through her photographs and the painting of her you see here on this blog. So to say that this dream caught my attention, would be a major understatement to say the least. The other amazing factor to all this, is that the individual who had the dream, never met Rachel and only knows her from a photo on my desk and my sharing of her through my story. Lucas, on the other hand, has come to visit Grandma at work and has met many of the people I work with.
Wikipedia the definition of dreams is: dreams are successions of images, ideas, emotions and sensations occurring involuntarily in the mind during certain stages of sleep. So according the the definition, anything can trigger a dream, from images we may have seen during our waking hours, to ideas that refuse to let go, or emotions that have left us in a particular state (whether happy or sad) and finally sensations that have reached into our psyche unlocking memories long forgotten.
So thinking of my friend and co-worker, I wondered what may have triggered a dream about Rachel. I hadn't seen her in a few days at work, her schedule kept her busy away from the office, so it wasn't me, or any conversation about Rachel, so what then. Maybe there was no trigger, maybe Rachel just wanted me to know that she knew Lucas, that she spent time with him, that he knows her at a deeper level.
But why this dream, why now? Then it hit me, Lucas the other day reached out for Rachel's picture, to which I simply said, Auntie Rachel. He smiled and sought out other pictures, pointed, waiting for me to say who the person was. In this little game we were playing, he would point to a few pictures and then come back to Rachel's and smile, pointing and waiting for me to say Auntie Rachel again. As I played this game, a thought came to mind, and silently I wondered if he truly knew his Auntie Rachel, if only they had met, they would both instantly have fallen in love with each other. Then the words 'gama' brought me back to the moment at hand, and the thought forgotten as we continued the game. Forgotten, that is, until this morning.
Rachel and Lucas had met, and they know each other in ways none of us can imagine. I have always been told that there is such a beautiful innocence and openness in children that allows them to perceive, see and understand things that too many adults pass off as nonsense. I have shared before how my niece would have long conversations with Rachel, how she still visits with her, remaining connected. As adults so many of us lose that innocent trust, we become less open to possibilities, refusing to see beyond what is perceived as reality. I would like to believe that I am very much open to all possibilities, today being no exception.
The other side to all this, is that Rachel has been on my mind, as I shared in an earlier post. I have been missing her, and really feeling her absence, it has been an emotional roller coaster ride. All along I was dreading another Easter without Rachel, but yet, here she is, communicating with me through someone else's dream. Simply reminding me that she is near. It was as if she knew I need reassurance that it was okay, that she's okay.
This past Tuesday's class my professor talked about how our loved ones communicate with us. How they let us know they are okay if we are open to hearing the messages that are sent our way. I remember his asking me during the class if Rachel came to me in my dreams, if she communicated with me. I have to chuckle at the timing of all this, it is as if others around me sensed my need for reassurance, for comforting words and that need somehow manifested itself into a dream from the most unlikely of sources. Which I am learning in this grief journey of mine, that messages, reassurance and comfort can show up when we least expect them, but when we need them most.
Grief is not easy, it holds on tight, occasionally loosening it's grip, but still reminding us that we hurt; and we hurt because we love, and because someone so very dear to us, has had to die. Yes their body as we know it has died, but their spirit is very much alive, and very much a part of our lives, if we are only willing to be open to their presence, we will know that they are near.
Blessings! And until we meet again.