A few days after I post Bad Romance– by no means the best post I’ve ever written, but my personal favorite, and I think it will be for some time to come, it’s so melodramatic and feels like some kind of multi-media collage– I dream about my husband, my Man, for the first time in months.
It’s a slumber wrought on Valium and fever and a dream that feel skewed and surreal– angles are wrong, the perspective of objects of out sync with their environment. I know I’m dreaming, of course, it feels like a bad attempt at acid flashback scenery done by a HSC drama class; but Tony, he seems real– all the more real against a background of such fallible absurdity.
I’m sure, too, that this comment from Molly (hi Molly!) added its own tone to the subconscious discussion I only vaguely remember having, the details of which are smeared and fogged. But we talked, we sat companionably and I layed my head on his chest with his arm around my shoulders.
It was the happiest I’ve felt in… years.
He remembered the best bits of me, he said, the happiest stuff we had. He didn’t remember, he said, not at all, the last few weeks of his life, he didn’t remember that last afternoon at all…
“Do you remember spitting on me?”, I ask, and that, if nothing else, is clear and vivid and I ask out of curiously, not malice; and I know he will reply in the same.
It’s then that my daughter wakes, crying in her sleep next to me, half tangled in the fairy clothes she insists on wearing to bed every night, over the top of her flannelette pajamas.
I untwist her from herself, roll over and slip back into the warmth of cosy, dark slumber; but the dream does not return.
I’m not implying I had some kind of psychic interaction… but nor am I saying it was ‘just’ a dream. I believe, passionately, both that my husband has contacted me while he’s been dead; and that most ‘psychic’ experiences are possibly the mind’s coping mechanism, a psychological morphine for an overwhelming manifestation of grief.
Those believes can co–exist. I know this, because I believe both. I also know it doesn’t matter whether it was a spirit or a random firing of neurons… the culminitive effect on my psyche is the same.
I feel as if been loved, held, smiled at and treated softly; for the first time in so many long, long months. It’s balm to my soul, a break that felt like an hour but was probably only a minute or two; an action of my mind in my sleep that made me smile the next day, rather than shake my head at myself, wearily afraid of what’s happening to me, what ugly ways my cortex is reforming as it deals with all that horror.
It feels like succession of a truth I already knew… reassurance of what I already thought. Of course, if he has memory of me, he would remember only the best, only the sparkliest bits of a mostly happy marriage…
When it comes to memory, we all stack the deck… especially, logically, in the Afterlife.