A few nights ago I had a terrible nightmare. The final seconds of the dream have stuck with me and left me feel sick to my stomach.
The dream started out that my oldest chickadee and I were Sea Doo-ing out in the open ocean. Just me and her and no other boats around. She was behind the Sea Doo tubing or swimming and was very comfortable in the water. (Which isn't really the case in real life - she isn't a proficient swimmer yet.) I was driving the Sea Doo and kept looking behind me to check on her.
Then, the next time I looked behind me, she was really far away and was waving her hands to come back and get her. Her eyes were staring right through me pleading with me to hurry and save her. Just when I got near enough to get her, she started sinking under the water. So I dove into the water to grab her, but my hands couldn't reach her.
I opened my eyes under the water and saw that she was sinking faster and faster and was beyond my reach. My arms were trying to grab her but kept missing. Her pink bathing suit and blonde hair started to become a grey blur in the deep water below with her hands outstretched above her head.
I felt helpless and sick with dread and despair. She was just GONE and there was nothing I could do. In that moment in time, a window of realization opened of how fragile a life is and how it can be over just like that. In my dream thoughts, I wondered, "What am I supposed to do now?! How do I handle this?!" Like, do I call the Coast Guard, 911? Who can help me? How can I live with myself?
For a whole day I didn't tell anyone about my nightmare. I just sat with the fear and dread in the pit of my stomach all day. Then that evening when we took our dog for a walk, I told the oldest chickadee and husband about the dream. Even retelling it to them brought tears to my eyes. They just brushed it off and reassured me it was just a dream, but I still felt that it left an ominous warning to me about my mothering duties - keep them safe from harm!! (Which I try, but often feel like I have no control over them or their safety. Then guilt over not doing more.)
Time to get off the computer now and be more attentive to the little flock.