Apr 14
earleyg's picture


It began with a class field trip to China organized by my real-life teacher to film the culture, tourist attractions and beautiful scenery. I, not like my real-life self, was eager to go to China. The other students and teacher melted away once we arrived and I found myself in a large courtyard that resemboled the inside of the Forbidden City. But it couldn't be...

A red building with Chinese symbols on it stood out from the rest of the area. It had black pillars and large, red doors with a beautiful design 3/4 of the way up. Interested, I entered. As soon as I was inside, I felt immediately exposed. Inadvertently, I had walked into a bar. There was much contrast in the lighting and noises were bouncing off the walls endlessly. If one were looking at it from a bird's eye view, the bar would look like an L rotated to the right, with the main bar on the left when one would walk through the door. A circular half table anchored to the wall was placed on the far left and a lounge area was located to the right. Further into the building was what looked like a front desk; a greeting podium. Behind the desk was a woman, about 32 nears old. She was clearly Asian, with the almond shaped eyes and beautiful black hair, which was tied in such a way that it fanned around her neck and was binded together at the ends. A large hair clip clutched a mouthful of her mane that kept the majority of her locks out of her eyes. She wore a beautiful yellow dress with white buds sprouting on golden stalks.

I approached the woman cautiously, with a napkin in hand. "May I help you?" She asked. The woman didn't seem concerned that by American standards, I was too young to enter a bar. I don't remember exactly what I wrote on the napkin, but it definitely tipped the woman off that something was going to happen. When I slid the napkin forward and turned away, I had an out-of-body experience. My eyes watched as she read the napkin, then gave the back of my head a long look. It was one of those looks that meant that person knew that the other had learned something they shouldn't have.

Although I felt that I should leave the bar, I stowed away under the half table near the door and found more paper to write on. Periodically, I gave the woman more notes, fitted in purple envelopes. From an American employer behind the bar, I learned the woman's name to be Yáng Zi. At the end of the day, when everyone left and the bar had closed, I emerged from the table and found Yáng and the American––who happened to be her fiancé––on one of the couches to the right of the main desk. When they saw me, they were surprised that I was still there. Still not a word about my age though, despite me being a 17 year old in a bar.

Eventually, I finally said it; "I think you're my biological mother." Those were my words, the words from my dream. It felt so real, and these people seemed so real and genuine. I can still see their faces; their eyes; so alive and so full of curiosity, questions, and wonder. Yáng went on to tell both me and her fiancé Edward that when she was 15 years old, she had a daughter, but felt she was too young to take care of her, so she put her up for adoption. Later in the dream, an inherited trait confirmed that I was indeed related to her.

When I woke up, I thought, what if that really was my mother, and she told me why she put me up for adoption? Now obviously that's a very, very long shot that is most likely not true. But it is a possibility as to why I was adopted in the first place. Maybe my mother was too young to be a mother. I researched the word "Yang" for some answers, and realized that her name sounds like the Yangtze river. When going to Google translate, (which I don't completely trust) the noun "Yáng" means "poplar" or which in North America, is translated to "tulip tree". Another translation I found was in the yin-yang. Where yin is darkness, shadow, and passive, yang is brightness, sunshine and positive. No matter what Yáng means, it's a beautiful name and the woman I created in my dream was a woman full of secrets. She was ready to start a new life, but now, since I had returned, the trajectory of her life had turned again. I had met my "dream bio family" and its memory stayed with me even when I woke up. It was one of those "so vivid, almost real" dreams. I treasure those types of dreams, ones that trigger emotions so powerful, that you just can't forget them when you wake up.