I had a dream about my mother, just before Samhain (SOW-en). For those of you who don’t know what that is, on the Celtic calendar, it is the celebration of the autumn equinox–the time of the final harvest, when the land lies fallow, until spring. On the Christian calendar, it’s somewhere near Halloween. Among other lore attached to that time of year, the veil between this world and the next is thinnest. That part is important, so remember it.

I digress.

I had a dream about my mother. My mother passed to the other side of the veil four years ago, the past June, and I haven’t dreamed about her, until now. We were sitting at the kitchen table, in the house where I grew up, drinking coffee and talking, as we often did. She suddenly looked at me, and said in a tone that I had come to recognize as her “don’t give me any crap” voice, “Reba Lynn, clean up your mess!” With those words ringing in my ears, I woke up.

I took this to mean that I was to get on with my life, instead of floundering about helplessly, as I had been. I am a strong woman from a family of strong women. We pull ourselves up by our boot-straps (garters?) and go on.  It’s just what we do. After all, I am a Furgason (long story, but Ferguson is misspelled, I know) and a Gibbons. With lineage like that, I can’t be anything other than what I am, right? Right!? Right.

In a week and a little more, I will be 41 (or as I PREFER to look at it, 21 with 20 years experience). Having clearly lost what little of my sanity is left, I have signed up as a full time student in the AA transfer program at my local community college. I intend to study history. I am quite lucky, as I have some very supportive friends, and understanding children. I am profoundly impressed with my own audacity. I also refuse to think about how many opportunities I have wasted, in my younger years. But like many priviliged (read: spoiled-rotten) children, I fail to appreciate anything until I have to work for it. My parents paid for the first go at University, which I failed at. I will be paying for this one, and failure is not an option– Because I proved to myself what I am capable of, when I really want something, and I want this more than I want air. I can be frightfully single-minded when need-be.

I have moved back to my hometown, and am finally settling into my new home, at least for now. I miss the sunrises and sunsets and the wonderful people out on my hill, but things will be more convenient, as I am working and going to school here. And amazingly enough, the sun still rises and sets here, too. And I am reconnecting with old friends whom I haven’t seen in years. Life is coming together.

I am cleaning up my mess, mama.