I just woke from a very vivid dream - a nightmare. In it I found Harrison floating in a pool and I pulled him out to do CPR and mouth to mouth just as I did on Camille. It was Harrison in my dream. At least that is what my brain told me, but now that I am awake with the images burning in my brain, it was really Camille. It wasn't my almost three year old little boy. It was my sweet nearly bald baby girl. Mercifully in this nightmare, she came too.
I have been thinking I wanted to do an "update" on where I am at 5.5 years out. And mostly I am doing really well. I feel like I am living a new chapter here in Dallas. I feel like enough pages have turned that I can appreciate fully the blessings that have come to my life from my tragedy. I can even feel thankful for those blessings and appreciate the necessity of the trial that produced them.
But, I still have nights like tonight. I still wake up to the reality that my worst nightmare is in fact my reality. I still miss her every day. The missing is not the same though. It is more distant. I can't remember her well enough anymore. It kills me to say that but it is just the truth. I don't remember the feel of her in my arms. It is hard to recall the feeling of presence.
Of course, right now, on the heels of that dream, she is closer. I remember right now. I feel as if I have just travel 5 years back into my past. I am tired and want to go back to sleep but I am scared to close my eyes and let my mind wander freely again. So I write to get the images out.
It was wonderful having my mom and dad visit last month for my birthday. But saying goodbye at the airport was so hard. Seeing them reminded me of all I left behind when we moved here. I didn't really appreciate the loss of living close to them when we moved because they had been living in Africa for a year and I was used to them being half a world away. And even when they returned, I was so used to a phone relationship that the loss didn't hit me.
But as I held my mother before she had to go get on the plane, it did hit. And I cried. I remembered how nice it was to be able to see them whenever I wanted and the joy of just having them in my presence brings me. In that moment I felt the love and wonderful feelings of all those I left in Las Vegas. I remembered and I mourned.
And so it goes with this whole grieving thing. Most of the time I am fine. I miss her but with a dull missing fogged over by years of time. But once in while, something slices through the fog of time and brings me right back to my early days of grief and I am left to mourn.