I had a dream last night that a helicopter flew right up to

my window and the woman pilot peeked in my house.

(Oh. Wait. It gets better!)

Then I led an enormous group of Russian speaking children,

along with my own,

on a swim to another country going against the current.

(I don’t swim.)

Throughout the entire course of the swim, the helicopter kept swooping in to check on our progress.

(She’s making me nuts!)

We can’t see land, but we’re making progress.


                My daughter just pulled away from the house in her very own car. It was her great grandfather’s car, but now it’s hers. When my grandpa needed to quit driving we bought his 1994 Oldsmobile. I think it was 10 years old and had less than 30,000 in-town-only miles on it. Grandpa made a weekly trek to Hy-Vee Grocery store and an occasional trip out to the farm. (Sometimes he didn’t even come onto the yard, just drove by real slow. You can take the farmer off the farm, but you can’t take the farmer out of him.) In the last eight years, we’ve added another 30,000 in-town miles, mostly back and forth to Mayo clinic. This week Kadi bought the car. She’s choosing to consider it a “vintage” car and anything “vintage” in Kadi’s eyes moves way up the cool scale.

We’ve passed a big blue baton down to the next generation.

Time is ticking.

Last Monday she took her first college classes as a Junior in high school.

In two years, she’ll graduate.

She’s a smart girl.

She’s resourceful.

She knows Jesus.

(I’m reminding myself of these truths as a means of dealing with my denial.)

None of this is easy.

                Mike told me this would happen. This season where two women, who’re so very much alike, rub against each other and create sparks. She is pressing hard against the boundaries and is ready to break out and declare independence. I am holding on and reminding her that there’s no hurry, she still has things to learn, she’s giving so much of herself to others that her family gets leftovers way more than is comfortable. She is spending hours writing every assignment for the entire semester –color coded- into her planner. (This she-child is so much like me it’s terrifying.) I think she should be studying for her ACT test and her business test that’s tomorrow. (I’ve been her teacher here at Cambridge Academy for the last 8 years. This is her first non- homeschool test. Naturally I want her to study and do well!) SPARKS. [Did you see that helicopter?] She thinks she should go cheer up a friend. I think she should ask if there’s anything she can do to be helpful around the house. MORE SPARKS.

                It doesn’t take my husband (psychologist) to interpret this dream for me. I get it. We are swimming in foreign waters and I’m doing things as a mother, as a teacher, and as an author and speaker that I don’t know how to do. It’s extremely uncomfortable. Hmmm … my daughter is swimming right next to me. She too is doing things that are foreign. Wait. Is that me behind the controls of that helicopter … making waves that only slow the progress of the swimmer? Well, shoot.

                Mike (husband/psychologist) always tells us that when we have a bad dream, we need to change the ending in our minds. Here’s my re-write …

The noisy helicopter pulls up – not away –

but high enough that the water is no longer churning.

It backs off, but is within distance to see when distress is signaled and help sought.

I’m swimming like an Olympian against the current with my kids

(and all the Russian speaking kids too … since I don’t know what to make of them in my dream).

Each of my three swim with different strokes: different from each other and different from me.

I’m good with that.

They know that when they get tired, they only need to reach out, grab my leg, and float.

I’ll carry them.

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