The other night I had a too-real dream of Bridget dying; by drowning. The dream so real, I woke with tears on my face as I hurried to her room to check on her. Me, a person who when asked would claim she never has anxiety and thinks she is cool under any circumstance. Here’s the dream:
We were at the local pool. Bridget was taking lessons. The guy giving the lesson was her old YMCA instructor who got fired. David sitting next to me on the bench, watching as kids are swimming everywhere. Bridget didn’t have a bubble on. I noticed but she seemed to be doing great. All of a sudden I realize she’s in the deep end and her instructor isn’t near her. She goes under. I race to the pool edge but don’t jump in. Instead I put my hand in the pool and slap the water to get someone’s attention. David never leaves the bench. They finally gets Bridget starts CPR and open a door to the pool house which for some reason opens directly into the ER. An ER in California!
(Regarding the picture of Bridget in the pool with her instructor: 1. that is not the one who got fired and 2. she would NEVER let Bridget drown)
This is where it pays to have friends that are also arm-chair psychologists! I reached out and while I do not typically believe in dream analysis. I knew I needed some clarity. Her response was brilliant:
Hmm-seems like a bit of PANIC in your dream. I’d say: you’re proud that she’s getting so accomplished and independent but you’re worried she can’t be safe on her own (no bubble!) and you’re scared to let her go. That she’s not ready for it. You perceive that David gives her too much independence by not jumping in sooner.
Holy crap, it helps to have smart friends. Ones that know I need the positive message and not get bogged down in needless worry. Bridget has made huge gains since September. She has made friends, been invited to parties because children want her there. She gets into the car with minimal assistance and wants to know who is picking her up each day. In the mornings:
Mommy working, Daddy take school
When we are driving to school, she is asking what signs say. Bridget is beginning to learn two sight words and can spell the first three letters of her name. I am carrying her less and walking beside her more.
I am so very proud of her hard work and accomplishments. My goal of not holding her back is working. Bridget is becoming a person you can have a conversation with and one who is exploring her world. She was even ready to go shopping. (Though how a child of mine does not realize the importance of M&Ms over lollipop concerns me)
I talk a lot about it being my responsibility to reach out for help. This is why it is so important. When you have a bad dream and a friend shines the truth to you. That they are there for you at 3 am or 3 pm. To have a true member of your village where no fear is too foolish and no milestone too minor.
I’m glad she left a light on for me.