A couple nights ago I had an interesting dream. At first I dismissed it as being interesting but irrelevant. But then, all of a sudden it hit me. "Oh, that's what that was about!" Duh...
In my dream I was at a retreat center or camp... somewhere away from home. I was with friends and church people and Gary. Some kind of crisis occurred and it became very important for me to call my parents. I grabbed my cell phone and started dialing... 998-2577... But when I punched the numbers in the key pad other number showed up on the display... 998-2377... 998-2587...998-2579. It was very frustrating and I kept trying again and again, very deliberately. I would think that I had finally gotten it right, only to look down and see the wrong number. I woke up before I was able to resolve it.
Growing up and separating from home is not something that happens all at once. It is a process. I've been on my own for over ten years... married for five. That phone number has not been 'my parent's number' for at least four years. Yet it still signifies something important to me . Safety. Security. That everything will be alright. I will probably never forget it. Truth be told, I probably thought that number would never go away. But even if it hadn't literally gone away, it still would have gone away figuratively. Through growing up and establishing my own family my security, my safety, and my sense that everything will be alright has changed.
That number can no longer be completed as dialed. Yet I am blessed that what that number represents remains, even if in a somewhat different form ~ People who love and care about me ~ People who won't forget me ~ People who will answer when I call.