There but not there

I had a dream last night about losing somebody in my house.  They were there, but no matter what I did and where I looked, I couldn't find them.  I'm not good at recalling details of my sleeping adventures but I remember feeling absolute desperation.

I'm sure you've had a similar experience with things, like when you can't find your keys, yet you know for certain that you brought them into the house.  That's always drives me crazy.  Or, even worse, your wallet. When that goes missing, though I know for certain it's there, I still start to panic.

A couple of days ago, we lost Ben.  He was there but not there.  Heather checked his room, the study, his usual haunts, then down in the basement.

As I heard her thump up the stairs saying that he wasn't down there, I started to worry.  Did he slip outside?
But it was a cold winter day and I didn't hear the rustling of jacket or the shuffling of boots.

"Did he go outside?" she asked.

I doubt it, I thought to myself, as I tried to rewind the tape in my mind to figure out where he may have gone, by this time my heart starting to race.

"Boo!" said Ben, as he popped out of his hiding place in the study, giving his Mama a scare and relieving the tension in the air.

How many times have you frantically tried to find something only to discover it was right in front of your eyes the whole time?  I've learned to be somewhat of a creature of habit to prevent this from happening.  The key to my car goes in the right pocket of my winter jacket.  My wallet comes out of my pants when I get home and on to the desk in my study.  The key to the office at work has its special place in my briefcase.

Despite my diligence, every couple of months something goes missing and I go searching.  Last night's dream suggests that I might be looking for something that is there but not there in the not too distant future.

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