In Dreams

Lately I have been having some strange dreams. Actually, more 'dystopian nightmares' than dreams, where everything is grey and oppressive, and from which I awake, cold and disorientated, unable to go back to sleep, the troubles of the world weighing heavily on my chest.

In these dreams, the government has made so many bad decisions that society has crumbled and the city has become uninhabitable. People are stolen from the streets and others are hiding from a nameless danger. Other dreams involve Aliens landing. Aliens with the heads of beautiful women, strange, disfigured, humanoid bodies and evil intent.

Each dream is different, yet with one common, recurring scene. A scene that lingers and drifts into my waking hours, hovering for days on the edge of my subconscious. A scene in which my children are running away from me and I cannot stop them.
They are not running in fear, however, nor with the intention of leaving me behind. They are holding hands, playing, twirling, laughing in the dusky streets yet moving farther and farther away... and I cannot call to them to wait for Mama, because if I did, I would draw the attention of whatever evil is in the atmosphere towards them and I need to protect them from it. Somehow their innocence is their shield and all I can do is watch them dancing happily away. I reach my arms out towards them in a futile effort to catch them before they disappear into the decaying world.

Back in reality, all of it is reflected starkly. Our government is squeezing us tighter and tighter every month. Introducing new taxes and charges and making decisions that make life more difficult for many. Strange things are dropping out of the sky... and my children are indeed moving forward at an alarming rate, into a world where both wonderful and terrible things happen.
In less than a month, they will be 3-years old. (!!!) In September, they will be starting in a NaĆ­onra. It will be their first foray into the wider world, the world outside of the little village that surrounds them now. I know that they will love it. That they will thrive. I also know that it will be much, much harder for me to witness the transition into this new part of their lives than it will be for them to make the transition... it already is.

I comfort myself with the fact that it is also something I want for them, and something that is inevitable. I want them to learn about and experience this big world. I want them to form new relationships and to discover how other people do things. I want them to move forward... yet I don't... because they are my babies and I want them to be small and snuggly forever... but I do because they are their own selves too and they deserve a full rich life... and I don't because I am a mother, their mother....

... and it is this bitter-sweetness of parenthood that I struggle with. That all of us parents struggle with. The holding on and letting go. How on earth can it be possible to hold on and simultaneously let go?

I don't have any answers. I do know that I will hold my babies close for as long as I can and when the time comes to leave them, for a short time, in their new little world I will see them to the door with a smile on my face and watch as they move forward, together. And I will be grateful for that. So grateful that they have each other.

All images taken on our Saturday walk on Bray Head which was very nice indeed and not at all dystopian!

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