As a little girl, I had one or two girlfriends. They were casual friends. I had a sister, who is now dead, with whom I was not close. She was Mother's favorite, whereas I was Father's favorite. It's strange at how dysfunctional my family was. Now I understand it as I look upon it as an adult, and compare it to other people I know.

So I think it's for this reason that loneliness is a very big "problem" for me. I don't deal well with loneliness, yet I'm also very picky about who I let into my life and who I open up to..... I suppose it's a result of the rejection of my mother towards me; even though, perhaps it was her "retaliation" to my father for a failed marriage. When I describe my mother to people, I describe her as hairy with big teeth. That might be a bit of an exaggeration; but when I think of her, I remember how cold I felt inside when she hugged me. It felt like she did it out of duty and show, and never out of love.

When I was 10 years old I had a dream. I think this dream stemmed from the fact that I was such a lonely child. In this dream I had a friend. We were about 7 years old. He was my best friend, playmate, and soulmate. We would sit on the grass in the playground and talk for hours. We'd run and play hide and seek and pirates in caves that we found. We would hold hands, and he would show me new things about the world. He always had bugs, vistas, wondrous discoveries that only a fellow 7 year old could appreciate.

This little boy in my dream took away all of my loneliness. My heart was filled with happiness and laughter as we ran and played, and stopped strangers in the street and talked with them. The sky was blue, and the grass was green, and there were wildflowers which covered the hillsides in this dream. We hiked through the meadows for eternity, filled with life and each other.

There was a shop, owned by an old man. In the shop, I remember, was a small waterfall. Tiny. About the size of a soup bowl, piled with colorful rocks. It was on the counter, and I remember sticking my finger in the water and playing with it as the water fell over the pebbles. My dream friend and I had wandered into this shop. When I turned from the waterfall, I discovered that he had disappeared.

That's when I awoke from my dream. I felt an emptiness. This little 7 year old boy of my dream made me feel happy for the first time in my life, and now he was taken away. I sobbed, but inside I understood that it was just a dream.

The dream was real for me inside, however, and the grief that I felt so real, that I never forgot it, or his face.

For all these years I've been looking for this 7 year old boy who made me so happy that night in my dream.

This morning I awoke. The air was crisp and cool on my skin, and the morning breeze smelled fresh with the perfume of wildflowers. I took a deep breath and stretched my body. I was filled with happiness and love. As I stretched out, I felt someone next to me. I turned. He was snoring away. As I looked at him, I realized -- by some chance of miracle, I've found the only person in the world who can complete me. I've found the boy from my dream. His name is Wendall Moosha Harken.

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