Do you dream about your parents? Do your loved ones seem alive again in your sleep? I love dreaming about my parents, but often dreams are uncomfortably instructive rather than happy.
Such was the case in 2015. That spring, I was focused on devising a way to articulate for my first book what the cleaning out of my parents’ home meant to my grief journey.
Searching for a common thread to tie moving parts of my history together, I unearthed the events since my Dad’s death in 2006 and the sorrows attached to losing him, and then Mom three years later.
At that time, I started dreaming about the pasture and woods in back of my parents’ house, where I grew up. I walked the pasture as a child, and even as an adult, in my darkest moods, to find wisdom and perspective. To find peace and comfort.
With my parents dead, I anticipated someday selling their home and this pasture. But I wasn’t finished cleaning out the house. And I wasn’t ready to let go.
I dreamed about the property again in April 2015 and wrote about it in my journal.
“This morning I dreamed I was at the hill at the back of my parents’ property looking at flowers. Flowers seem to symbolize ease or peace in my dreams.
As I looked at the flowers, a neighbor walked up and informed me some development of the land was occurring either near or on my parents’ property. Since I didn’t live there, I hadn’t known. I immediately went to the crest of the hill. I looked down and saw loud, heavy equipment, and men working. They’d already bared the earth of grass and had taken down most of the trees. I got so upset I yelled.
“My refuge! My refuge!” I lamented. I immediately woke, the emotion still pressing into my chest.
I realized after that dream that not only was my parents’ house a safe place – a place to go for comfort amid my grief over their loss – but so was their property. I feared it being ruined, being changed into something that was different than I’d known. I feared a future without them and a place to go that was the next best thing to being near them.
I guess this is supposed to be place I tell you my realization led to reform, but it is not. I’m still attached to the home and property. However, I find myself leaning into another refuge more and more. This refuge cannot be demolished by heavy equipment or ruined by the ravages of time.
With the dream still saturating my mind, I jotted down three Bible verses that spring morning. I hope they comfort and reassure you as they did me.
“He who dwells in the shelter of the Most High will rest in the shadow of the Almighty.” Psalm 91:1
“I will say of the Lord, ‘He is my refuge and my fortress, my God in whom I trust.’” Psalm 91:2
“God is our refuge and strength … therefore we will not fear, though the earth give way and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea…. Psalm 46:2
Where did you find refuge after your loved one died? Consider if it was a place for a season, and whether it is pointing you to a more secure, eternal place to rest.
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