A Dream, “Young Again”
The other day, I tweeted and updated my Facebook status as the above. I had awoken from a night full of weird stressful dreams, one of which I still can’t seem to shake. In my hopes to possibly share it with the world, and now write about it openly, may make it seem less profound and allow it to dissolve as it still remains strongly in my thoughts today.
In my earliest recollections of the dream, I was back in Brooklyn in the old apartment my family and I lived for many years. I stood and stared out my bedroom window during nightfall like many times I have done before when young, peering out across many of the backyards of the adjoining houses of this neighborhood block. Some people used to keep their yards manicured, while others allowed weeds to grow wildly amongst their flowerbeds. Maybe it was a reflection of their personalities, I thought to myself. I used to find it so peacefully serene — peaceful enough to allow my mind to wander and wonder how things were going to be when I grew up; all the places and people I would see and one day meet. How life would possibly be so thrilling. In my dream, I hung a small dream-catcher in front of the window and feeling a bit tired, I gently layed down in my old bed, and slowly closed my eyes while gazing at this dream-catcher as it slightly swayed.
Hours must have passed as I was awoken to the sounds of my family in the kitchen hearing my father’s laughter and mother’s loud professions of joy about upcoming plans. Eavesdropping, I tried to hear what these plans were about when my sister suddenly bolted open the apartment door while coming home and cheerfully joining their conversation. Everyone was so extremely spirited — so extremely jubilant. But, there was something different. Things felt somewhat familiar, and although, slightly different. The voices sounded much younger — so vibrant, and so loudly…happy.
Feeling excited, I leaped out of bed ready to run out to the kitchen and join in on the festivities. You see, I couldn’t remember the last time the four of us really met as a family at home — my father, mother, sister, and me: All without the pretense of traveling far and yet meeting for only short moments of time. To just feel the innocent rivalry of being siblings with my sister and a son to my mother and father — free laughter and home comfort without the limits of time.
Again, there was the looming of something oddly familiar and yet different. Glancing towards the window, the dream-catcher slightly swayed and alike a magnet, I moved closer. Through the yarns of the dream-catcher, I could see that it had started snowing outside. I peeled away the shades of the window, and saw that my hands were different. They were smaller. And, so were the rest of my arms. I was wearing an older t-shirt — one I have not worn since early middle school. Catching a glimpse of my reflection in the window, I was perplexed to stand still. I recognized the boy I once was. And, I was he again.
My thoughts — they were different. They were much lighter and carefree. I had started to forget the day’s responsibilities and the many severities in the world. I need not worry about them anymore. I could feel a small smirk developing as the corners of my lips rose, pursed alike the beginnings of a smile. Next, I was to swing open the door, and run out to meet my family again. I was going to hug each person in that room, maybe the closest person first, then next, or my sister first, then my mother, then father. Excitedly, I turned to reach for the doorknob, but I felt forced back from grasping it — not yet, I thought.
Many of my thoughts had escaped me, but my mind hung onto the faint cloud-like images of two young children. They seemed to need me. Without me, life would be very different for them. And as it seemed like through some cognitive sense, without me, their existence would no longer be real. With me being here, any future I have had would then be randomly recreated again — life’s paths that are chosen alike the manicured gardens. The images I have had of the two youthful children, I knew, would then dissipate as soon as my hand turned my bedroom doorknob. They greatly needed me and I knew that I needed them just as much.
I turned towards the window one last time. Through the yarns of the swaying dream-catcher, I saw small flakes of snow — so genuinely innocent as they floated down from above. I smiled and gently closed my eyes one last time.
This is when I awoke.