I woke up because I heard screaming. They weren't screams of passion or pain. They were filled with fear and panic. I jumped out of bed and flew down the hallway. I didn't stop to ask questions or try to identify what was going on, I just rumbled down the way and destroyed whatever lay in my path.
All I knew was the screaming and that it sounded to me like my daughter was in trouble. I was death incarnate and ready to obliterate whatever it was that was causing her to shriek like that. It is not hyperbole, melodrama or exaggeration. It was instinct, primal nature calling out to me.
The door to the room was closed. Frankly I am surprised that I didn't tear it off of the hinges. I reached out grabbed the handle, twisted, turned, pushed and was by her side in seconds. I looked down and saw her...fast asleep.
It took a moment to realize that it was a dream. She hadn't really screamed, it was just something that I heard in my dream. For a moment I stood there dumbfounded and tried to figure out what the hell had just happened. Fuzzy headed and half awake I began to remember that I had watched some stupid horror flick.
That was probably the source of my angst. That stupid movie must have gotten stuck inside my head and manifested itself as some crazy dream. And now courtesy of the dream I was wide awake, wired and ready for battle. I can think of a lot of situations in which that might be useful, but not so much on a Tuesday.
Shaking my head I walked out of the room and headed off to the living room and collapsed onto the couch. There in the dark I closed my eyes and took a few deep breaths. I was more than a little thankful that it was nothing more than a dream. It had scared the hell out of me in a way that few things could.
As I sat there in the dark I wished that there was a way to express this feeling in a way that my children could understand. I know that they know that I love them, but I don't think that they understand that it is a deep, fierce sort of never ending love. And I don't suppose that unless they become parents they'll get it it.
But sometimes I wish that they could. Not because I am looking for validation or recognition from them but because I want to do whatever I can to instill confidence in them. I want them to see how deep my belief is in their ability. I want them to have that to call upon as a reserve whenever needed.
Now if only I can find a way to catch up on all the lost sleep....