Outside it was just like any other drizzly Oregon spring day. All loaded up in my dad’s white truck, we were headed out for a family fishing trip. Andy was driving. I was in the passenger seat. Rylee behind me buckled safely in her car seat, snoozing away.
For whatever reason, we decided to drive along the creek to our desired fishing spot. Being early spring, the water was high and fast…more like a river than the creek we were used to. The moss on the rocks along the creek bed, glistening in the sunny mist of the morning made for a beautiful, peaceful drive.
It all happened so suddenly. The back end of the truck slipped on some moss and before we knew it we were upside down in the water. Adrenaline took over and in less than a second I was in the back seat trying to unbuckle my sleeping girl.
My fingers wouldn’t work. I couldn’t get the chest buckle undone. I looked to the front seat, my eyes flashed with fear to Andy.
As I continued to struggle, the windows of the truck started to crack under the pressure of the water. Freezing, brown water came rushing in the cab and I knew it was over…
My eyes flew open and my breathing was heavy. I sat up on my elbows. Phew…just a dream. I must have been stirring in my sleep because as soon as I sat up Andy asked if everything was all right.
Just a bad dream, I said.
It was all I could do not to rush straight into Rylee’s room right then and there, scoop her up and not let her go for the rest of the night.
I’ve always been a vivid dreamer, but I’ve never had a dream like this. Taking my two worst fears, drowning and something awful happening to my baby, and stirring them together.
To be honest, I don’t even know why I’m afraid of drowning. It’s completely irrational considering I know how to swim, I can tread water and I love being out on the water…on a boat, on the bank…fishing, kayaking, sunbathing.
I tried to calm my racing heart and get back to sleep. Nothing worked.
I tossed and turned for the next 30 minutes.
When Ry ended up at the side of our bed, I leapt at the opportunity to take her back to bed. I snuggled her close, resting my cheek against the top of her head.
Once her breathing grew heavy, my breathing slowed.
As she melted up against me, I melted into the bed and was finally able to sleep again.