Dream a Little Dream
I must have been in a light dream state because all of a sudden I heard Mom’s footsteps come scuffling along the hallway. I knew it was her by the way she walked. She was wearing her slippers and her “pinny” (apron), and that big red knit sweater with the large drooping arms that she wore in winter. She came into my room—my current room—and started cleaning up.
“You don’t have to do that,” I said.
“It’s no bother,” she answered.
She leaned in and I could see her face, her grey curls, her bright eyes. “It’s been a long time since I’ve seen you,” I told her.
“Yes,” she said, coming closer as if to crawl into bed with me and hug me tight.
Then, of course, I woke up.
Such a tantalizing dream. I am overwhelmed with longing to have her back.
I must remember that she is still here with us though perhaps the spark that is her essence is particularly clouded and hidden. When I received a surprise video chat from Mom late last Wednesday night (thanks to one of the special nurses at Mom’s care facility), I saw a little of that spark. She animatedly gave us blessings and good wishes. I was with my son, and he too was a recipient of her largesse. It was Mom in a good mood though clearly suffering from Alzheimer’s—not the Mom of my rich, sparkling dream.
I will cherish those few minutes of my dream when I interacted with the Mom of my memories. I will remember her as she was when I next see her this week and try to recall her warmth and charm. And, regardless, I will know that she lives inside me as a whole, unique individual. She is constantly with me, perhaps hugging me even as I type these words. What a gift I received.
As we celebrate Purim this week, I am reminded that this holiday truly marks for me the one-year anniversary of the Corona pandemic. It was the last time our synagogue celebrated together freely, and the first time we became aware of the disastrous global spread and effects of COVID-19. We are not out of the woods yet, despite many in Israel receiving the full Pfizer vaccine.
I honestly don’t feel like celebrating Purim. I’m not in a mood to dress up or be wildly happy. There is an injunction to drink enough on Purim so that two of the main male characters become indistinguishable one from the other. Although I rarely drink (other than an occasional glass of wine), I might be able to handle it this year. It will take the edge off this muted celebration.
Let the fun of Purim at least be palatable. I’m not a fan of dry red wine (my favorite wine is Gewürztraminer), but this aromatic and fruity sangria is quite pleasant to drink.
½ apple, cored and chopped
1 orange, seeds removed and sliced thinly then quartered, half reserved for garnish
¼ grapefruit, seeds removed and sliced thinly then quartered
3 strawberries, chopped
3-4 Tbsp organic brown sugar
¾ cup orange juice
1/3 cup rum or brandy
750 ml bottle dry red wine
In a large, tall pitcher, mix fruit, sugar and orange juice. Set aside several orange slices for garnish. Stir in brandy then add wine. (If you don’t have a Spanish wine in your neighborhood grocery store, any red wine will do. I used a Teperberg cabernet sauvignon-merlot.) Decorate individual glasses with orange slices. Enjoy!
Note the chocolate peanut butter oznei haman (hamentashen) in the background. For that recipe, click here.