For those of you who, like me, have lost a parent you’re extremely close to, you’ll understand that dreaming about them is part of the grieving process.  (Or so I read in a book once.)

 

When Mum died seven years ago, I dreamt about her every night.  Even when I didn’t want to.   Particularly if I didn’t want to.  Even when, just for once, I wanted to forget and dream peacefully. Instead, I’d often wake up crying as the realisation of her death would hit me over and over again every morning as consciousness took hold of me.

 

Grieving has been a long and very difficult process for me.  It had to go on the back burner for a long time as I was also having to deal with a tough relationship at home at the time and ironically, the one person I needed to turn to, had died.

 

I still think about Mum on and off during the day if I see someone who reminds me of her or if I see a mother and daughter having tea and cake in a cafe like we used to.  Smells, favourite shops, clothes I know she’d like, music she loved … all reminders.

 

But I don’t dream about her much anymore and to me, that’s a good sign. To me, it feels like after seven years my sub-conscious has finally understood she’s gone.

 

Except …. last night I had to make an extremely difficult and upsetting phonecall which, when you’re single, is always doubly hard because you don’t have any support.  No one to put their arm around you afterwards to tell you everything’s going to be OK.  I text my best friend afterwards which is a bit like having a mini virtual hug.

 

But it’s not the same.

 

I went to bed and ate the now cold toast I’d made for dinner.  I watched something so banal on TV I can’t even remember what it was called and finally drifted off to sleep. But strangely enough, I dreamt about Mum last night. I was home in the house I grew up in, the house my dad built, and it was snowing lightly. Mum was making a roast dinner, the dinner that always brought the family together on a Sunday, except she seemed to be making just about every dish possible, every dish she’s ever cooked, she was feeding the 5,000 oh, and she was cooking outside in the driveway on mini bonfires.

 

And that was the part of my dream that probably made most sense!

 

I woke up this morning, lying at right angles to my pillows with three out of four pillows on the floor, my head hanging over the edge of the bed and one of my two quilts smothering me.

 

Suffice to say, sleep had been a little restless.  But I just found it strange that even though I hadn’t been particularly thinking of Mum, she came to me in my dreams last night to give me a reminder that she’s still there.  That she’ll always be there.  Whenever I need her.  Just for a few hours, even though I wasn’t conscious, I was transported back home and we were all together again.

 

My dreams are always strange but last night was weird and comforting – the best combination.

 

 

 

 

 

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Published by Kate Sutton

Writer, Mother, Dater.

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14 Comments

  1. I used to dream about my mum when I was a lot younger, but it hasn’t happened for a long time. Whenever I’m going through something tough though I always see a robin. It turns out that as my mum was dying a robin came and sat on her windowsill.Sounds bonkers and maybe it is, but the same happens to my sister.

    Bonkers or not, it’s comforting.

    Much love xxx

    1. That’s so sweet. I’m like that with sunshine. Whenever I think about her intensely the sun comes out really brightly. Always happens. Totally coincidental I’m sure but like with you and your mum’s robin, it’s comforting and I guess we need to find comfort wherever we can right? xxx

  2. I used to dream about my grandparents all the time – really intensely realistic ones that made me feel sad, but also made me feel grateful, because it felt like I’d been given another chance to see them again. I remember always feeling so excited in my dreams, and the first thing I’d do was give them a huge hug, and tell them how much I loved them. Like you say, it was sad, but also really comforting too. xxx

    1. I don’t know if I could handle intense realistic dreams of Mum – I don’t think I’d want to let her go again. I do understand the comfort you’re left with of being able to ‘see’ loved ones again though, especially if you get the chance to tell them you love them. My dreams aren’t as clear as that where she’s concerned. They’re always really odd! 🙂

  3. As I think you know, my mum died last year and I get those dreams regularly, probably 4 or 5 times a week, although I went through a patch where it didn’t happen much. I interpret it as an emotional connection and having someone in your head. Funnily enough, it’s not actually that unsettling or weird for me. I assume it’ll ease off, but strange to hear hat you still get them after all this time. All the best.

    1. Thanks for your comment Phil and I’m also sorry for your loss. (Weirdly enough, I was just reading your blog post about PRs in London!) You’re right, we still have that emotional connection even when they’re gone. I’m glad you don’t find it unsettling though, and I don’t now, but it’s been much longer for me. I like the fact that she still pops her head round the metaphorical corner sometimes 🙂

      1. Yes, two very different blog posts! Thanks for your best wishes. It feels a little while ago now, so I suppose post-bereavement. I wrote a guest post on Typecast last year with the full story http://www.iamtypecast.com/2012/03/cancer-your-story-supernova-soul.html

        Anyways, like the term ‘dream grieving’ – will remember that. I doubt it gets discussed or written about much.
        Phil recently posted..Cycling needs to be safer in London – but there’s one group that can make a massive differenceMy Profile

  4. What a beautiful post. I lost my mum 15 years ago and she isn’t in my dreams at all usually. Once in a blue moon she pops up and we carry on as if nothing had happened. I wake up and try to spend a few minutes remembering and wrapping myself up in that feeling that she is still here. I wouldn’t say I was particularly close to my mother, but my parents were always the ones I turned to if everything hit the fan and I am so sad that she didn’t see me become the person I am today or meet my children. Love that you have done a post about her. She sounds lovely.
    The40yearold recently posted..Being a GrownupMy Profile

    1. Thanks for taking the time to comment – it’s a very emotive subject. I can relate to the feeling of trying to hold onto the feeling they’re still alive once you wake up – hard when the realisation hits you though isn’t it? I’m sure your Mum would have been very proud of you as I hope my Mum would have of me x

  5. Love your posts! But the dream about your mum was very moving as i could relate to it:( however on a lighter note! Keep up thegood work n have fun x Michelle

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