When someone you love dies, it leaves a scar somewhere deep inside. A huge, twisted, knotted, UGLY scar. The immediate pain might fade over the years, but the scar never really goes away. Sometimes, when the weather is right and the rain comes a’callin and you pass by that Place You Used To Go or hear That One Song on the radio, the scar twists and an ache takes hold of your heart and the pain resurfaces.
When my good friend died, we were so very young. She was not quite 25. I was 23. She was in my dream the other night. I used to dream of her frequently, but not so much anymore. I like to think that those dream appearances are visits from her, wherever she is. I don’t remember what we talked about during our visit. I didn’t even really remember that I dreamt of her until I heard a song on the radio today, not even a song I associate with her specifically, but she came to mind, unbidden, and there it was, a wisp of a memory of a dream. And I reflected, as I sometimes do, on our friendship and what it meant to me, and what it may have meant to her. We were young; we didn’t think so at the time, but we were. Looking back on my early twenties now, we were so very young. Still figuring out where we were going in life, what kind of people we were, what kind of adults we were going to be. Still grappling with insecurities and jealousies and friendships gone awry and all of the drama and trappings of post-high school, new-adult life. I think about things I heard after she passed away, worries I never knew she might have had, issues I had no inkling may have existed. I like to think that, if she had lived, those worries and issues would have been laid to rest over time and our friendship would have endured. Thrived. That we would have grown together, through marriage and parenting and friendships and loves and life. I like to picture us sitting together in a cafe now, looking back on that time in our lives and laughing over how silly we were to get worked up over so many things that seemed so large but were really so very insignificant.
I like to think that somewhere in the universe, a version of She and a version of Me are having a good cup of tea and a great conversation.
Even if that somewhere is only in my barely-remembered dreams.