I dreamed that I was young again living in Nashville, Tennessee in the basement of the dorm at Belmont University. I woke to discover not only that my roommate had left to parts unknown but that the whole place seemed to be deserted except for me. The silence was deafening.
With panic rising I hurriedly bolted from my bed and went looking for someone, anyone. I didn’t bother to dress. I simply left in my night gown and bare feet. Every door stood open with each room equally deserted. Where is everyone? Why didn’t they wake me and take me with them? I felt an urgency to find someone and discover where they had gone. I bolted up the stairs two at a time and burst into the lobby which also was equally deserted. It was odd. Even more strange was that every clock I passed including my watch had stopped at precisely 12:00. None of them appeared to be in working order. It was if everyone had vanished and time stood still from that moment on.
As fear continued to grip my heart I rushed out onto campus feeling sure I would discover someone there. The grounds were also eerily silent except for the pounding of my heart. There were no sounds, no sign of life, and no movement anywhere. I rushed across campus toward the mansion that is the centerpiece of the grounds. Even it looked eerily deserted. It didn’t make sense. As I approached, I saw movement in an upstairs window. A ghostly face peered out behind the curtain and then just as quickly was gone.
I raced to the front door certain that the person I seen would know where everyone was and would know why I was alone. I desperately needed the answers that would calm my sense of panic. The front door was locked tight. I beat on the door with both fists in vain. No one came to the door. Frustrated, tears swam in my eyes. “Where is everyone!!? G0d help me! “I screamed in frustration. Maybe I had only imagined I seen someone. Perhaps Adelicia Acklen Cheatham’s ghost was making her rounds. That thought didn’t exactly make me feel all warm and cozy inside. I gazed up at the window again. The face was gone. There was no sign of life there either. My mind was simply playing tricks on me.
Sweat poured off my brow. I was hot and winded from running. I didn’t understand what was happening. I decided to turn around and return to the dorm with hopes that someone would be there by now. I climbed the hill. My breath was labored and I was instantly exhausted from my merry chase and my fear. Maybe there would be someone to be found in the other girl’s dorm. There had to be someone. Certainly a campus that is normally swarming with people wouldn’t be deserted as if evacuated for a natural disaster.
Unlike my dorm, the other girl’s residence hall has an elevator. Being hot and tired, I had no intention of running up or down any more stairs and chose to take full advantage of it. With purpose I marched up to the elevator and pressed the up button and patiently waited. The elevator arrived and I stepped inside. As the doors slid closed I pressed a random floor and waited watching the numbers light up in slow succession as it made its ascent. Suddenly everything went black and the elevator plummeted. Falling to the floor, I scream in terror, and woke screaming and sitting bolt upright in bed sweating profusely, panting, and suddenly wide awake. It was a dream, only a silly dream. It was simply a silly dream that seemed so incredibly real that it left me gasping for breath, dripping with sweat, and trembling.
I have never understood what that dream meant. I have dreamt it several times over the years since I left Belmont University. Although I am usually alone, there have been other similar dreams when I have been accompanied by my kids and even my husband, which is even more incredible since they have never even been there. Sometimes I have dreamed that although I have found others I wasn’t able to communicate with them. It was as if I was invisible or didn’t exist in their reality. They couldn’t hear or see me. I rarely dream, but when I do it is always some bizarre twisted tale which makes absolutely no sense. Although my parent’s visits in my dreams are rare, I find when they do grace my dreams with their presence I fight waking up because I am desperate to remain with them as long as I can. Since most of my dreams leave me wondering why, or scaring the be Je$us out of me I am just as happy to simply sleep dreamless until next time when I give you another glimpse into the life of a trucker’s wife.