A few mornings ago I stayed in bed a bit longer than usual, enjoying the feel of my cool pillow against my cheek and basking in a quiet calm my dreaming had surrounded me with. I had been dreaming of Ryan of course, a dream that is asked for more frequently than is unfortunately granted. As a matter of disappointment, I dream very rarely of Ryan and wish often that this would be different. A part of me believes strongly that Marley sees him in her dreams regularly. It’s my experience that children are more open to such visits due, in part, to their receptive and uncluttered conscience. I often stand beside her crib and ask her to say hello to Daddy when she sees him. Send him my love and tell him I miss him, please. She doesn’t answer, but I know she understands. Although a rarity, I do occasionally dream of Ryan, but usually he is out of my reach, disconnected or distant. This was not the case on this particular morning.
This dream was different, more personal and more real. Like a warm, crackling fire on a crisp fall day, I wrapped myself warmly in its embrace. It was the first time I dreamt of Ryan and Marley together. There they were, interacting, getting to know one another. I was trying to let Ryan in on the many nuances of Marley’s existence. He marveled at how much she looked like him. Later in the dream, it was just the two of us and we were walking towards Alterra Coffee. Ryan and I used to take frequent coffee walks on weekend mornings, talking animatedly the entire way. This was a small something that meant a great deal to me and I had looked forward to doing it as a family. Marley and I often make this journey together and we occasionally talk about Daddy on the way. I’ve spent some time wishing and wondering what it would be like for Ryan to join us on these simple excursions which adds to the reality that this dream in itself was a dream come true. There we were, walking hand in hand down the street, a happy family, laughing, teasing and smiling…finally.
This dream was like a gift of time. I was unexpectedly given time with Ryan. I was able to show him Marley and was finally able to share in the joy of her accomplishments with the one other person in this world who would think them as enormous as I do. We were able to walk hand in hand as I laughed at his silly jokes. My favorite part of the dream had us standing in the kitchen. I was bent down picking something up and with a smirk; Ryan threw more of it on the floor. I remember looking up and him giving me that crooked, sly grin of his and I instantly felt like I was home. This may seem like a simple gesture to most, but to me it hits the deepest core of our playful relationship. He was constantly teasing me and I was forever eating it up. This was us, Kris and Ry and this wonderful dream allowed me a few minutes of this life back. A few minutes to feel light-hearted and happy; a few minutes to be a family. How lucky I feel to have had this time and also how grounded I am in the realization that this dream left me feeling nothing but happy. This dream is mine and I will hold it close for a long, long time.