Last night I dreamed of finding a small cupboard tucked into the wall under my home’s staircase. At floor level, the cupboard’s door slid to the side to reveal a cache of painting and drawing supplies, and a handful of wooden dowel rods needed to fix the balusters the boys have knocked loose through the years. Behind the supplies were baskets of treasures: my sons’ baby pictures, years worth of lovingly made Mother’s Day gifts and misspelled school essays and poems.
Marveling at what I’d found –what I didn’t know I was missing –I knelt to pull out nursery school projects and charcoal pencils, wood glue and gauche. My heart swelled as I deciphered little boy handwriting, and I laughed out loud as I sorted through everything I needed to create beautiful things, to repair what was broken.
“Oh my gosh, look at all this!” I said to Karen, who stood behind me in my dream. “I must have put all this in here. When did I do that? How did I not know it was here?”
From behind me, silence. I’m the Queen of Missing The Obvious, and I expected the usual smart-a** remark Karen has had plenty of opportunities to practice making.
“Karen, ” I said, as I turned to look at her, “how did I not know all this was here?”
“It’s always been there, ” she said, quietly. “You just forgot.”