She stood in the kitchen enjoying the sounds of her children chattering nearby, engrossed in the task at hand, her mind was still but present. The woods outside her window were dense but the slightest clearing leading to the spring in the distance gave way to just enough space for her to witness her favorite part of the day, dusk. It lingered only for a few minutes but that was enough. The sun slowly dipped below the horizon and suddenly it felt like everything on earth was painted in its truest color, free from the direct bright light of the sun but not yet darkened by the night sky full of artificial lights. It was as real as anything could be and somehow it felt brighter than the actual day.
It happened so fast, in a flash, everything changed. All that she knew was about to be questioned. The smell in the room changed, without a thought she moved instinctively as if this had all happened before. Perhaps it was a dream. After a brief pause that felt like a lifetime she figured nothing was worth saving except the lives of those she loved so they ran. As her home crumbled before her and panic ensued all around all she could think of was that there was nothing left to do at this very moment but watch as the flames engulfed everything she had every possessed. A strange serenity took over, for the first time in a long time she was not in control of anything but her reaction.
No more calculating, planning, thinking. It had been decided for her; it was time to move on.
For as long as I can remember, I've had a reoccurring dream where I stood in my kitchen as my two young girls played outside in the woods. It seems to be late 1600s. In the dream, I know it to be only my daughters and I who live in this little cottage in the woods. Fire torches make their way to our home as I stand by the window and immediately realize what lies ahead. Without hesitation, I yell to the girls to run. It is a strange dream but it always feels so real, something more like a memory than a dream. I always wake before anything else can happen, the last scene in my mind's eye is that of my girls' petticoats bellowing behind them as they ran away from me, the house, the danger, hand in hand and I turn to see the angry crowd making its way towards me.
It is difficult to explain how this dream can feel so connected to the real tragedy we faced last August as our own home was engulfed in flames. The only obvious similarity being fire and the fact that I have two girls whom I directed to run during both events. I believe in messages, tips or clues if you will, that help guide us through this life and it's mysteries, trials and tribulations. Perhaps this dream was just that, something that played in my head so many nights over the years, preparing me for the split second when I realized in real life that nothing else could matter.
Sometimes everything has to end, fall apart and cease to be for a true beginning to begin. This is the lesson I've learned this year. You move on.