I had a dream about my parents the other night. I was trying to call my father on a cell phone and I couldn't get the number to go through. I wanted to tell him that I was having trouble finding my mother. My frustration and anxiety about not being to make this call built until I woke up in the middle of the night.
The meaning behind this dream seems clear. I miss my father, z"l. Not being able to call him but feeling that somehow I ought to be able to reach him probably indicates my ongoing grief at his death and maybe an unconscious unwillingness to take it in. And not knowing where my mother is? My fears and worries about losing her too.
Although my dad had been progressively more sick for several years and in his last few weeks had very poor quality of life, I was still unprepared to hear about his death via the call that woke Rik and I from a sound sleep. And the fact that Dad lived a full and long life, dying one week short of his 81st birthday, didn't make losing him any less painful, as my dream indicates.
It's not a tragedy for someone to die at the end of a long life. That's the way it's supposed to be. But I guess one can never prepare to lose a parent.