Monday, April 10, 2006

Ghosts and Dreams

Angel and Tish have been on my mind lately, a lot. Tish is my mothers younger sister, who died of lung cancer six years ago at the age of 39. Angel was her daughter, who died at the age of 12 three years ago. I have been having dreams about Tish. She had a set of wedding bands she loved that were worth quite a bit to her emotionally and financially. My dreams are that she tries to throw them away, to actually flush them down a toilet. I keep asking her what the hell she is doing, has she lost her mind? However, she never says anything back. She just continues to try to pull them off and disperse with them in one flush. She never succeeds, but I end up walking away disgusted, and waking up confused. I've had these dreams on and off for the past two weeks. Then I went on my 3 times weekly walkabout in Pikeville, and saw the ghost...

The holler (hollow, to those unfamiliar with the local vernacular) road that goes past the apartment to Riverfill Road goes past Pikeville hospital, where coincidentally, Tish died. I was walking past the hospital when I glanced down the hill and spotted a woman pushing a stroller with a handicapped child in it. I was about 50 yards up the hill, looking from a distance through weakening glasses. But, the child that woman was pushing was Angel,I would have sworn on my life. The dark curly hair that was so wiry it would not be brushed down was the same, fought into pig tails. Ice blue eyes stared back at me, and smiled. I actually almost stumbled when I saw her, going so far as slamming my eyes shut to make sure I wasn't seeing things. The vision did not change. The woman put the child in a car, and drove away. I was bereft. The last time I saw Angel was in her casket, and then she shows up where I least expect it. I cried, but kept on walking to gain composure before the natives thought I had lost my mind.

I never had closure with either of them. Tish died while I was in Oregon, and Angel died when I was in Lexington, 150 miles away. I never got to say goodbye properly. Its no question I miss them both terribly. It has even gone so far as for me to seek out where Tish's wedding rings actually went. To my relief, Tish's whole jewelry box is in my sisters possession. Would wearing those rings bring me any closure? I doubt it, and I wouldn't ask Raymond (Tish's widower, Angel's father) for the permission. It would be too painful. And yet....I had that dream again last night. This time she was pulling on them so hard her finger bled. The only explanations I can come up with is that I just miss them, and the upcoming wedding is making me feel their loss even more.