I dreamt of Henry again last night. It happens so infrequently.
My family is out of town this week, and I've been trying to keep myself busy, and to avoid thinking too much about him. I didn't want to hit a real low here all by myself.
Recently work has provided some trauma to my emotional scab about Henry. Tho I see kids frequently, several of them have triggered emotion in the last few weeks. I enjoy them, but the ones who mention some of his favorite things with the passion that only a 4 year old can feel, or who wear the underwear he used to wear, or who giggle in the way he used to giggle, can catch me off guard. The memories are pleasant, really, but the loss of course isn't.
And occasionally we'll have to do something unpleasant to a kid his age. The screams of "That huwts" or "pwease pwease pwease stop" coming unexpectedly down the hall hit me like a baseball bat, and I'm back changing his Hickman dressing while my husband wraps his arms around him so he can't move and dirty the sterile field. He went through so damn much. I wonder if those memories would feel different had he made it, more badge of courage than futility.
Anyway, back to the dream. Funny, it's clearly due to my book, but he was time traveling. He was already dead, but showed up again for an unspecified amount of time, in our time. It was just wonderful. We knew he'd be gone again, but he didn't. He laughed so much, and was so happy, and he picked me to put him to bed. He talked about his sisters so lovingly, and asked me to read "The night before Christmas" to him. And just before I started he said, in the way he always did when he was explaining something, "Did you know that tomorrow is George Washington's birthday?"