Heavenly

Occasionally, my husband has meetings in Manhattan that require an overnight stay. I’m not going to go on and on about how this makes me jealous. I won’t call him a jerk for callously stating his night in a mid-town hotel just “isn’t all that much fun” on his Facebook status. I won’t share the details about how I read that insensitive statement moments after my finger inadvertently slipped into a poo-filled diaper.

I just won’t.

But good Lord…I miss overnights in New York hotels.

I miss the days when I was comped rooms at the W or stayed at the Essex House just because I didn’t feel like hopping the train back to Westchester. Life was tough and those were the perks of the job.

I miss the silence.

I miss the Heavenly Bed.

Back when Westin first introduced the Heavenly Beds, Starwood Employees were able to buy the linens, down comforters, pillows…hell, we could buy the whole damn bed if we wanted to. I bought the comforter and the pillows. And they are heavenly, thank you.

courtesy of Westin at Home

 

So heavenly that three children were conceived under the downy cloak of heaven.

This morning I was fitfully sleeping beneath my Heavenly Bed comforter and thinking that it ain’t so heavenly anymore.

Gwen had been coughing at regular intervals for two hours and by 6:30 a.m., my right eye had begun to twitch. My head was pounding. The cat made her grand morning entrance, demanding I get up and fill her bowl so she could resume another day of compulsive eating.

I tiptoed into the hallway, fed the cat and peeked into Gwennie’s room. Her hair was fanned out on her pillow and her eyes were squished shut in a pathetic attempt to sleep.

“Psssst…Gwennie,” I whispered, trying to avoid rousing the wee beastie (Kate).

Gwen popped up, smiled and held her arms out for a hug. I picked her up and carried her to my Heavenly Bed, kissing her forehead along the way.

She hacked in my face three times. A light spray of germ-filled mucosa dappled my skin and probably infected me, but I didn’t care. I was too tired.

We snuggled into my bed and watched the news together. Gwennie sucked on a mini-melt cough strip and was uncharacteristically silent.

Except for the cough.

I stroked her hair and kissed her head. She hugged my arm and held my hand. Then, during a commercial break she turned her little face up to mine and spoke. Her voice was not unlike what I imagine Marge Simpson might sound like if she was five.

“Mommy, I don’t believe I can make it to school today. I feel like shit,” she rasped.

And so, my middle child – the one who never curses – was lovingly tucked beneath my Heavenly comforter with her head resting on two Heavenly pillows to watch Tinkerbell for the 346th time.

After I fluffed her pillows, I moved toward the door to get Joe ready for school. Something made me pause in the doorway to look back at her.

Suddenly, that bed looked heavenly again.

 

For My Love

Happy Valentines Day! I’m re-posting the true story of how my husband and I met. It is simply magical…

I walked down the hallway watching him as he moved ahead of me. He was handsome in his navy suit. Far more well dressed than any of the men in my life…and then he turned to do a goofy dance that completely belied his appearance. Waves of lightness and love washed over me. At that moment I felt myself shift from the nothingness of a completely mundane existence to the realization that I was experiencing unequivocal love. It was palpable and intense and I tried with all of my might to focus on his face. I needed to see it clearly…to memorize it because somehow, I realized that this meeting was brief.

I struggled to stay there with him, but I woke to a snowy morning in February. It was 1997 and I was just four months away from a rather large wedding, but I forgot all of that as I desperately clung to the filmy remnants of my beautiful dream. Tears streamed down my face because I knew I didn’t fully see his face. I didn’t know his name and I’d likely never see him again. I couldn’t imagine living without the intense happiness that I briefly felt in my dream. I had never experienced such joy and letting go of that feeling of lightness to return to my dark place was unbearable. The dream was so unbelievably vivid. Out loud, and to no one in particular I asked, “Where are you?” Knowing that I couldn’t go back into that dream, that our meeting wasn’t real was devastating. I know …this sounds dramatic, but I just don’t have the words to express how intense that dream was, how happy I felt.

Even after telling myself that it was just another dream, I couldn’t shake the feeling that he was out there. As I talked myself out of believing in his existence, I came to the realization that those feelings of love and acceptance were so intense that I couldn’t deny them. I’d never had such strong feelings before, and here I was having them for a blurry, handsome man in a dream. At the very least I knew that if I was getting married to Steve, I was marrying the wrong person simply because that intense love wasn’t there. We shared no real connection except that we were really good friends who were attracted to each other.

Three days after the dream I still couldn’t stop thinking of him. I wondered where he was. I walked into the house that Steve and I had just bought and handed the engagement ring back to him. I knew that if nothing else, my “gut” was telling me that marrying Steve was the biggest mistake I could make. I stood in that house looking at him, scared to say goodbye, but not feeling any affinity to this place that was supposed to be ours. I willed myself to love him the way that I loved the man in my dream, but realized now that my love for Steve would never be as intense. But I did love him and I loved him enough to know that leaving would be painful for both of us. So instead of trusting my instincts and believing in the message of my dream, I chose to take the ring back. I listened to people tell me I had cold feet and I kept my dream to myself wondering if perhaps I had finally gone completely crazy.

For 2 years and 9 months I kept my dream to myself but never forgot it. I was married but very newly separated. I vaguely knew David. At work one afternoon, I was out of the office researching documents in his conference room. I was distracted by my recent separation, for the past few nights I had been staying at a hotel and was just beginning to realize that the road ahead of me was about to get very bumpy. David seemed to sense that I was in a bad place.

We left his office and began walking down a deserted hallway. He said something that made me laugh. For the first time in days, I felt completely at ease. I had momentarily forgotten what was happening in my life because there was something about David that made me feel safe. As he moved ahead of me, I noticed for the first time how handsome he was in his navy suit. We were laughing about something, I don’t recall what now…and he began to turn toward me. As I stood laughing and watching him break into a goofy dance, I felt like someone had knocked the breath out of me. I stopped laughing and stood staring at him with eyes wide open. He stopped his dance and with a look of concern, asked me if I was alright. I blinked in shock but gathered my composure enough to tell him that I was fine and continued walking.

How in the world do you tell someone you barely know that you dreamt of him almost three years ago? That you saw that very moment play out exactly as it happened before you even knew he existed? The hallway, the suit, the dance…nothing differed. It was him. I knew it was him.

I don’t need to tell you the rest of the story because you know that we fell in love. Just days after that goofy hallway dance we were inseparable. I told him of my dream months later, after he knew me well enough that he wouldn’t think I was a crazy, clingy stalker. To this day I am amazed. I wonder how that dream happened. What or who placed it in my subconscious just before I was about to marry the wrong person?

Whether or not you believe my story is of little consequence to me. It happened and to this day I feel that destiny brought David and I together and there will always be a little bit of magic attached to us. He finally found me.

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