Dreaming Goodbye

Last night my mother came to me in a dream and said goodbye to me. I didn't realize the significance of it right away. The beginning of our journey towards her departure really began just over two years ago when I was here in the Catskills at this same exact place for a workshop with John and Silvia. My mother had been recently diagnosed with congestive heart failure but was on diuretics and was relatively stable. That weekend was the last time I left her for any period of time before she died. She declined over the next 6 months and passed in September of 2013.

I had the great good fortune of being able to be with her most of 2012 and 2013 up until she passed with the exception of a few days here and there. After she passed I felt a tremendous amount of peace around it. I had spent so much time with her and afterward felt so much that she was with me. I did not feel her absence- rather, I felt an overwhelming presence. I have had brief moments of missing her but they have been insignificant compared to the overall sense of her being with me so much of the time.

Last night I saw her in a fur coat (dark brown actually, not the the one in this picture). She looked middle-aged, not old, and beautiful- glamorous but very down to earth. Behind here were woods, a forest or a jungle- reminiscent of the feeling of the background in "The African Queen". She was going on a cruise ship. She was some distance from me, maybe 20 feet or so- close enough to talk, but not to touch... She stood at a distance and I realized with some surprise that she was leaving. She seemed very clear, steadfast, and peaceful. The sense was that she was going away and was not coming back and she was totally okay with that. I was surprised but okay too- I didn't feel like I needed to approach her, give her a hug. I was just accepting that this was what was happening.

It didn't hit me until I went into our dream group this morning and suddenly I realized that she had come to say goodbye to me. It was such a surprise. I didn't really expect her to leave- I thought I would continue to feel her presence. I do feel on one level that she is still with me, but not nearly so close as she has been. There is a distinct awareness that she is now further away, on her own journey. I have wondered many times if at some point that would occur and actually been curious that I could feel so okay and at peace with her passing. Up until now I have really had no real sense of loss.

I am fascinated that this process began for me in this same place when I was here two years ago and has come to a sense of completion, the closing of a door and a real sense of grieving. I think she must have known that this is a safe place for me where I have a huge sense of support. There were several people here this time that were here that first weekend and a couple of people who were also in the Bahamas when I went to a workshop there just a few months after she died. They knew what was happening at the time and in fact just yesterday I was talking to a woman who had been here that first weekend. The first thing she did when she saw me yesterday was ask how things went after I left here that weekend and we had a long talk about it.

I cried a lot today, more than I have in the past year and a half since she died. Still, tonight I feel happy and at peace even though I am sure that there are more tears to come.