I once had a dream where I was swinging a baseball bat. The problem? I wasn’t playing baseball. I was swinging away at things (I’m not even sure what?) just smashing objects at will. When I woke up and remembered my dream, I could still recall the anger and frustration I had felt. It was really weird to see myself that frustrated, even if it was in a dream. It was a bit scary to realize that this anger and frustration was buried in my sub conscious. Like I said, the first time I had the dream, I was dealing with teenage boys. I love my children and the men they are becoming, but there was a time that they were struggling badly. Really….it was hard!
The funny thing is, that dream comes back to me every now and then. It pops into my mind when I am purely angry or frustrated. I am not that way very often, but it did happen today. I was trying to write something encouraging to a friend, cuz that’s what I do, but instead the vision of me swinging that bat swam before my eyes.
Dementia. It is such an insidious disease, that like a thief, robs a person of who they are. Just thinking about the effect it had on my Aunt brought a stab of pain, and the dream of course. The last time I talked to her, she really did not know who we were. Some of our family went to see her and have lunch. She made a little conversation, but it was so different than it used to be. She even seemed confused on how to eat and had to be prompted to feed herself. It was a good day though, one that I will always remember. She may not have been the same, but she was still the Aunt I loved.
So as I sit here working my way through the feelings that surfaced, I try to see the pain through the lens of love. The reason it hurts so much is because I loved her, and even more important, she loved me. While the pain of loss never goes away, the pain becomes bearable by being wrapped up in the love that was shared. While it may be hidden, it is still there, only to pop out at the most unexpected times. Like when you are reading of someone else’s struggle. But the more I remember the love, the more I am healed. So I am going to sit for just a bit more, and chase that dream away, by soaking in the memories that only bring joy.