Even after almost three years, I rarely dream of Tony. I would venture to guess I’ve had no more than ten dreams of him since he passed. In the beginning, I remember falling asleep hopeful he’d make an appearance. Knowing I’d never again see him in the physical world had me craving a visit of any kind.
However, those first few dreams were very painful. Since Tony died by suicide, the first dreams were my subconscious trying to make sense of it all. I would dream that he was actually still alive and that he had faked his death. In one of them, I was so mad I pushed him in a dumpster. In another, he was mad at me for canceling the pool we were supposed to have put in the spring he died. I only had a few of these dreams but they still stick with me. I would wake up feeling so anxious.
A few months ago, I had a dream where we were at a party together. He was on the other side of the gathering laughing and having fun with his friends. In the dream, we both knew that he was dead. I didn’t understand why he didn’t come over and hang out with me. But I also couldn’t risk crossing the room myself, afraid if I moved it would end illusion and I would wake up.
Saturday morning, I woke up after having the best dream of Tony yet. We were at a lake, and he was sitting in the water while I sat on a dock not far away. He just sat there smiling at me, so much love in his eyes. We never exchanged any words. I was also aware that this was a dream, so I sat immobile. Once again, afraid to disrupt the sweetest moment I’ve had with him in almost years. While I sat there absorbing every unspoken word from him, a friend of mine sat next to me. I didn’t have to look at her, I reached out and she held my hand. She squeezed it with a knowingness of how fleeting this moment would be. We held hands, while Tony smiled at me until I woke up.
When I awoke, I laid there holding onto the dream, refusing to let it slip away. Thankful for this peaceful dream of him. Writing this reflection, also has me realizing how far even my subconscious has come.