Tonight I’m travelling. I find myself in an airport. I’ve just gotten off the plane and am looking for the baggage carousel. There is a girl, about 15 years old who was on the plane with me. She’s thin and has blond hair. She’s about 5′ 10″ tall. She looks a lot like a girl Shayna played volleyball with her freshman year. She hugged me before we got on the plane. She hugged me when we got off the plane. As she gathers her bags and is leaving, she gives me a third hug. Then, she looks me in the eye and says “Oh, I can kiss you?” and gives me a peck on the lips the way Kayla and Shayna used to before Kayla decided they were too old to kiss their Dad on the lips. She’s off, on her way to wherever. That’s strange. Why is one of Shayna’s friends being so friendly to me? I don’t even remember her name.
I look over at an adjacent carousel, and I see Kayla. She’s just gotten in from somewhere. She smiles and waves. I’m glad she’s here. I didn’t know she would be here, but we can share a ride, as soon as I can find my luggage! It’s been forever. Where is it?
I’m getting impatient. I walk over to the nearest baggage carousel and start to look for my bag. But, I can’t remember what it looks like. Did I bring the maroon folding garment bag? There’s one. It has blue trim on it. Did mine have blue trim? This bag is packed full. I wouldn’t have had that much stuff for such a short trip. How long was I gone? I think about a week. Why don’t any of these bags have name tags on them? I ask the people at the carousel which city they came in from to see if I’m even at the right carousel. They answer “Miami”. I’m pretty sure I wasn’t in Miami. I’ll need to ask an airline employee where my carousel is. What was my flight number? I look through my pocket for my airline ticket. Maybe I can remember the city. I was somewhere in Texas. Was I in Dallas? Why can’t I remember where I was? Then it dawns on me. When you can’t remember where you’ve been, it’s probably a dream. Is this a dream? I check. It feels authentic. I can feel the floor beneath me. I hear airport sounds. There are all kinds of people here. I feel real. This isn’t a dream. But, it’s got to be a dream, or I have dementia. I will myself awake, not sure it will work. A few seconds later, I’m in my bed analyzing the dream. As I go through the elements, I realize the girl at the beginning was Shayna in disguise. When we have dream visits, I tend to get overly excited. I think she came disguised this time.
I was listening to Roberta Grimes’ podcast yesterday. She started off by saying when you finally get that we don’t die, when you deeply internalize it, not just know it in your heart, you have mornings when you wake up back here on Earth and think “Damn, here I am again.” Well, that’s not a quote. I’m paraphrasing. I think of Brenda after she crossed over, coming to Suzanne and saying “I just woke up.” And I think to myself, “Why can’t I just wake up?” If this life is but a dream, an illusion, a temporary role we play, why can’t I just snap out of it? It was so easy last night.