Last night, the Meadville wind was a party animal hooting, hollering, and banging throughout our neighborhood.
As I drifted in and out of sleep, I took comfort in listening to the windstorm, cuddled in my cozy bed. Eventually, I endured a vivid dream battling the wind.
Zzz…It was a chilling, fall day in my neighborhood, and I stood on my front porch just looking around at the leaf-filled yards. Houses were shut up with closed-windows and doors. The sky was busy, clouds flying like a flock of frantic birds.The wind picked up to a wild roar, stripping branches and leaves from the autumn trees.
In a neighbor’s yard, I noticed a little yellow shed tumbling over and over like a casino die. It was then that I desperately wanted to get back into my house, but I was too far away from the storm door handle. I was less afraid of being knocked down than being blown and thrown, flapping around aimlessly like a lost kite. (I hate flying dreams.)
I could only do one thing, try to stay still. I had nothing to hold onto, so I had to brace myself like a steel statue. The wind continued to push while a giant magnet attempted to pull me off the porch. Although alone, I had faith that I was strong enough to stay grounded. At first, all I could do was reach and stretch my arms. My feet were useless, as if cemented into the porch. I kept trying to lift them with no success. I started to wobble and couldn’t last like that forever.
Finally, I switched tactics and was able to slide my left foot, just a smidgen. The slight motion of my leg and foot moving forward briefly robbed me of the rigid stance I worked to maintain. Losing balance, I slid my right foot to catch up with the left and rerouted myself. The blowing intensified as did the danger, but I needed to beat the storm of my subconscious. Mind over matter. Slide to the left! Slide to the right! Now everybody clap your hands; my feet ended up slipping with the ease and speed of a hockey player during the Stanley Cup finals.
I skated to the door handle, relieved to have something to hold onto. I couldn’t open it though; it was vacuum sealed to the frame. I came too far to give up and found Hulkish strength and successfully flung it open and dove into my foyer. From the floor, I kicked the entry door shut. The storm door bashed against the brick house, and I laughed that it wasn’t me.
Although this was a terrifying dream, I woke up feeling relieved, like a little pig saved from the huff-and-puff of the big bad wolf. It was 3:14 AM, and I got out of bed to get some water. I was sweating from the adrenaline-spiked dream compounded by my middle-of-the-night hot flashing hormones. I changed into dry pj’s and fell back into bed. My home continued to embrace my family, pets, and me.
I was thankful we weren’t out there being knocked over like bowling pins or thrown around like Frisbees, but there are days we have to work harder against fierce winds. We can: build up strength and battle the bursts, put up a shield to avoid the blows, or go with the flow, falling or flying, and gaining new wind gear along the way.
Today, in Northwestern Pennsylvania, there are few apples left on the tree behind my house.
Most let go of their branches before a premature snowstorm. I plucked some fruity keepers from the cold ground, offering each a new purpose.
I wake to a new dream of hot apple cinnamon crepes, cider, and pies…