It's been almost 3 months since Mom died. For the first two months, I had no dreams of her, and I felt cheated because people talk about loved ones visiting them in dreams and why not me since I miss her so much?

Then a few weeks ago she appeared briefly in a dream, and now I dream of her nearly every time I sleep.

There are 2 types of dreams:

In one, she's helpless, barely conscious, in a nightgown. There's usually someone else there, too. We're trying to move her from one place to another, but her body is limp and she keeps sliding out of our grasp. It's like trying to move a giant sandbag. The details of the dream are less important than the feeling of holding her limp body. The sensation is familiar -- it comes from my last day with her, when she was in great pain again, at home, trippy from the morphine that we keep giving her more and more of to no effect, and Dad and I had to get her to the hospital in Indianapolis because her vital signs were tanking. Certain sequences from that day have been playing like home movies over and over in my head every day since she died.

In the second type of dream, she suddenly appears and I'm ecstatic, but I know not necessarily that it's a dream but that this visit, this time with her back from the dead, will be extremely brief and I need to inhale as much of it as I can as quickly as I can. I hold her close, my face inches from hers, and tell her over and over how much I miss her.

When I wake up from the first type of dream, which I have more often than the other, I don't really feel anything unusual or notable.

When I have the second type, I wake up feeling desolate.