In my dreams he smiles at me, looking down from his perfect height. The twinkle in his eyes is back where it belongs. His heart is on his sleeve. And he apologizes. The man I married once upon a time reappears as if a spell has broken. He tells me he made a huge mistake and he doesn’t know what came over him. He tells me he’s sorry, so sorry that he hurt me and he’ll spend the rest of his life making it up to me. I tell him I’m sorry, so sorry for everything I did that made him feel bad.
He kisses my forehead like he used to. We hold each other crying. We forgive each other.
And then I wake up.
And as my morning trickles into noon, into afternoon, the truth seeps back in.
The dream was just a dream.
The texts begin. And my heart pounds in sadness. Perhaps disbelief.
His parents are coming into town and could they please stay at my house (not his) while they are visiting so they don’t have to stay in a hotel (he has 3 bedrooms at his place). And can he please have the cordless drill for his place. And he’ll be out of town but will see the kids when he gets back. He bought the kids another etchasketch for his place and I can just keep the one my son brought home. What does our son want for his birthday dinner. What time should he drop them off.
And I know beyond a shadow of a doubt that my dream is actually a dream of a dream.
I am holding onto an idea of something that was long gone before he walked out the door. This is real, and has been. All along. The man I married is no more.
The truth is like antiseptic on a cut. It hurts as it heals.
And the dreams fall away like so many leaves off the tree. I see the truth, bare, exposed and stark, reaching up to the thunderous sky.
I see my dreams for what they are- a tender love note to my own heart.