My grandpa always promised that he would visit me in my dreams when he died, so I can’t help but think every time I dream of him that he’s here for a little visit. I find it strangely comforting. It doesn’t happen as often as I wish it would, but the other morning I was feeling bad and after I took the kids to school I laid back down in my bed and pulled my down comforter up over my head. Before long, he was standing there.
This dream was pretty strange though, because I had two grandpa’s growing up. I guess most people have two grandpa’s, but usually it’s Mom’s dad and Dad’s dad. I had my mom’s dad and my step-mom’s dad because my dad lost his parents when he was really young. So I was lucky that I got an extra grandpa in there somewhere. Both of them were very charismatic people, well-loved by all who knew them. I was really close to my mom’s dad. I named him “Softy” when I was 8-years-old and that turned into the name everyone called him, and I was born on his birthday, which was really special. My other grandpa, Grandpa Smith, owned the Salado Dairy Queen and he spoiled us with ice cream all the time. They both died within about a year of one another, so I haven’t had a grandpa in a long time. In this dream, my mom wanted a drink from Salado Dairy Queen, but she didn’t want to get out of her car, so I went in to get it and when I came back out, I told my mom “we can get a free drink, this is still my grandpa’s Dairy Queen”. The mention of that grandpa reminded me how much I missed Softy, and then all of a sudden he was there, but here’s the strange part. He was holding a brochure. In it the question was asked “How much are you still here?”
This brochure offered a measurement of social media. It said by monitoring Facebook, Twitter, and other social networking sites a person could determine how much they were still alive by how much they were still loved and missed. It then offered tools to help the dead person determine whether their continued presence here was helping their loved ones or hurting them. It asked “do your loved ones find comfort and joy in your presence or does it continue their sorrow and sadness?” I watched my grandfather reading this brochure and I could see he was pondering whether or not he should be there, outside Dairy Queen, and I looked up at him and said “You can never stop visiting me, it would kill me!”
Just as he opened his mouth to tell me something, my phone rang. It rang and rang and rang until I could no longer hold on to the dream. It was Blondie. She wanted Chinese food for lunch. Like a good mommy who knows I have only 8 weeks left of her calling me from school, begging to be spoiled, I got up and took her to lunch.
I kept wishing I could find my way back to the dream. There were more things I wanted to say to him. I wondered what he was going to say to me. Maybe he was going to tell me the secret to getting my boys to stop fighting. Maybe he was going to help me let go of Blondie a little more. Maybe he was going to give me the wisdom to be financially sound. Maybe he was going to tell me he was so proud of my children and that he knew how beautiful they had turned out. Maybe he was going to tell me the key to happiness. Or maybe, maybe he was just going to say “Happy Birthday Tiff.”
Happy Birthday Softy! It’s been nine years, and still I miss you enough to Tweet, Facebook, and blog about you every chance I get. You’re still here…