My mother will be 87 this month and unlike me, she continues to have very vivid dreams. My dreams are certainly not going to win any Academy Awards. Besides, I rarely remember them in the morning.
Like most kids who have watched way too many horror movies and TV shows, I was prone to scary dreams. Maybe not recalling dreams was a defense mechanism to help me forget nightmares. Of course, I did wake up one morning recalling a dream in which I won the lottery. I clearly remember watching the TV and the celebration afterwards when I received that giant check from the lottery officials. Unfortunately, I never remembered the actual numbers.
But not my mother. She dreams in color and remembers every single detail. That’s how she found out my father is dating a redhead in Heaven.
“I dreamt of your father last night,” she told me the other day. “He said he had something to tell me that I wasn’t going to like. He fell in love with someone.”
Fell in love with someone? “How is that even possible?” I asked her. “I didn’t know you could actually date in heaven?”
“He told me he doesn’t know how it happened,” she continued, “but he doesn’t love me anymore.”
My father has been dead for almost 10 years now and, quite frankly, this came as a shock to me. My father was never known as a “Hound Dog” when he was alive. After all, he began dating my mother when she was a teenager, why the sudden interest in a redheaded woman in heaven?
I asked my mother about which Dad she sees in heaven, young Dad or old Dad? “He’s 33 years old,” she told me, admonishing me for not knowing the rules of heaven. “Everyone is 33 years old in heaven. That’s how old Jesus was when he died.”
Fascinated with where this might be going, I asked, “How do you know she was a redhead?”
“She was standing right next to him,” she said. Wow. Talk about an awkward situation. Then she began yelling at my father. “After all those years we had together and all the years I took care of you when you were sick,” she said she told him, “You turn around and do this to me?”
I was so intrigued by the sudden dramatic turn of events, I needed to know what happened next. “Then I woke up and had to go to the bathroom,” she said. Oh, the humanity! Now I was never going to find out what happened.
Except my mother is the Queen of Dreaming. Whereas most mortals would come back to bed and change the channel in their brain to something different, for my mother, it was just a commercial break. She went back to sleep and continued participating in her personal soap opera, “As Heaven Turns.”
“She had the nerve to tell me to leave him alone,” she said of the nasty redhead. “And there was nothing I could do about it.” Surely my mother wasn’t going to give in to this home-wrecking hussy, right?
“Then again,” she said solemnly, “I’m probably not going to get into heaven.” Wait just a minute, young lady. “You have as much of a chance at getting into Heaven as anyone,” I reminded her. Besides, how does a home-wrecking hussy get into heaven anyway? Have the rules been relaxed since the last time I read the Bible? Then again, marriage vows do stipulate, “Till death do us part.” There doesn’t seem to be a provision for the Afterlife. Besides, it is Heaven, right?
Based on my behavior during my 20s, I’m certainly not going to waste St. Peter’s time in line at the Pearly Gates. But my mother? She punched her ticket there a long time ago. At some point, she is going to get there and at some point, my transformed, 33-year-old mother, is going to run into Miss Redhead.
I only hope that will be available as a pay-per-view dream that I can remember.
Paul DiSclafani, a Massapequa resident, is a 2018 Press Club of Long Island award winning columnist and an Anton Media Group contributor since 2016.