Sarah first appeared to me in a dream.
She was sobbing into the shoulder of an older man. “Sarah, you need some rest,” he urged her. “How can I rest when our baby is so sick?” she moaned. Then she lifted her head and faced me. “Thomas will know how to heal him.”
I didn’t mention the dream to my husband Thomas, the famous pediatrician. He would probably say it represented my unfulfilled longing for a baby. I thought it was more than that. A few nights later, I had another dream.
Again Sarah was weeping, but this time over an empty cradle. “You’re too late,” she spoke directly to me. “He’s gone.”
In the third dream, Sarah and the older man knelt beside a tiny grave. “Ingo Beaton” read the marker. “September 1931 – November 1932 – Beloved son of Matthew and Sarah”. And then, cryptically, “A better life someday”
I grieved as if Ingo had been my own son. Many weeks later, a new dream. Sarah and Matthew played happily with three young children. Again, Sarah turned to face me. “I’m sending Ingo to you,” she whispered. “You can give him a better life.”
A few weeks later, I discovered I was pregnant. The doctors had said I could never conceive, and yet I was carrying a child. A boy, they said. I had barely gotten over that joyous surprise when a knock came on the door.
We’d hired landscapers to redo the half-buried gardens of Beaton House, our new home. Now they had tales of a stupendous discovery. “The old family graveyard, hidden away all these years!”
I didn’t need any more details. I grabbed a bouquet of flowers and rushed to the site. I found Ingo’s grave, exactly as I had dreamed it. His parents were buried on either side, as if to cradle him.
“We’ll take good care of Ingo,” I told Sarah through my tears. I gently rested the bouquet of baby’s breath against the cold grey stone.
I probably won’t tell Thomas about Sarah and the dreams. He’ll be busy enough healing Ingo.