The other night I dreamed about bears. Three Giant, terrifying, man-eating bears that somehow squeezed into my family home, the baby attacking my brother, who didn’t hear my parents and me frantically yelling for him to stay upstairs.
My mom came to his rescue by full-body tackling the giant baby bear and inexplicably dragging it up the stairs as some kind of hostage, thinking she could reason with the adult bears, I suppose, leaving my dad and I downstairs while the giant bear parents followed her. “Why does no one have a gun?!” I screamed at my dad as I frantically went through the kitchen drawers looking for something to kill a murderous gang of bears with and realizing that all of us were about to be horribly killed as I handed him a large bread knife.
I snapped awake with a gasp, terrified, and then, relieved. Relieved to wake to a reality where my family and I were not engaged in a fight to the death with giant evil bears, sure, but also to be waking up, for the first time in months, from a nightmare that was not about my ex-fiance.
Relieved to wake up just scared, not sad, not angry, just afraid. Relieved not to wake up to a face wet with unconscious tears I refused to cry while awake. Relieved to feel like myself again, if only for a little while. Relieved to catch a glimpse of sun, new growth, a whiff of living earth.
Any sign to hold onto, anything to believe that spring will indeed come.
That this long, cold winter will soon just be a memory, no more than a bad dream.