I didn’t sleep very much last night. When I did, I had an intensely vivid dream. I was laying on a slab in a very dimly lit room. My blood was being transfused, fresh blood pumping through me by a machine. Several of my friends (work friends mostly) gathered around lovingly. They were so tender and caring. They kept bestowing gifts upon me, strange gifts – the power to predict the weather, the power to smell things like an animal would, the ability to see in the dark. In exchange for these gifts, they were draining my blood and drinking it from ancient goblets. As the dream formulated, I was at first confused and disoriented, then comforted by their tender ministrations, then completely terrified when I realized what was actually happening to me. I gasped awake, making a point to remember this dream upon waking.
Day five is an entirely unknown entity. I begin this post in the morning hours, while the city is cold and grey. I’m about to take Molly the dog on a walk through the cemetery. Later I will return to my home (can I call it that in this place of limbo?) and steal a few quiet working hours there. My sadness is as thick as the fog that wrapped us all in mystery last night.
My walk with Molly the dog proved to be a therapeutic respite. The cemetery is so pretty, particularly at this time of the year. She’s a great dog, always full of smiles.
I get on the TTC to journey towards the house. A girl in a maroon sweatshirt waits for the bus. I notice her because I notice everybody. My earphones are plugged into my head, creating a bubble filled with sweeping, melancholic music. I mindlessly drift from the bus to the subway and ride the train studying the faces of strangers.
At Pape station, a young man gets on. He is the very same young man I saw yesterday at Starbucks, speaking to the Christians. He doesn’t recognize me. These serendipitous moments are common for me. I’m always struck by them, and I wonder if there is some greater meaning. I transfer at St. George Station. The girl in the Maroon sweater is standing on the platform waiting for the Northbound train. The same train I’m about to get on. The young man waits for it too.
Now I sit in our local coffee shop waiting to come into my home. The sun is streaming in the windows and the tables are filled with people reading newspapers and books, or typing away at their laptops, or having laughter-speckled conversation. The coffee barista tries to be cute by playing a little game of tug-of-war with my receipt. His overly-familiar gesture annoys me a little. I’ve never seen him before. I smile indulgently all the same. I might as well make someone happy today, even if that someone is a stranger.
I want to go back to Hamilton. It’s easier to be away from my home when I’m far away from my home. As I move through my appointments and obligations in the city, my former life dangles before me like something in a dream that I cannot grasp no matter how hard I try.
I’m home. In my house. I’m sleeping here tonight. We are able to share the space with such grace and love that I am amazed, and moved by how we can still take care of each other. I feel hopeful for our future as a family. We have an early start at some family time together tomorrow, and I’ve put in a full day of work. I feel a strange sense of peace. Despite the pain, we are still together, trying to work through to a place of deeper understanding. I won’t take this for granted. I know that today was possible because of some perfect storm of timing and temperament. Tomorrow will be different, and I should have no assumptions. All I can do is continue to keep my heart open, and true, and strive always for love and patience.
I’m very, very grateful for today.