The Watery Dream

I’ll not include all the dream’s tedious details, instead focusing on the few scenes, person, and essence that cling to my memory. 

Roger/Ronnie was there. Twins, they were my wife’s cousins. Born in Ohio, they adopted Georgia as their home, shooting as their mantra, and Fox News as their information source. They loved playing at being good ol’ boys.

Since I couldn’t tell them apart, one of them was in the dream. In the dream, there was trench full of muddy, milky water flowing through the middle of the house. We all accepted it as normal that it was there. The house itself was busy with people and activities but nothing that seemed significant. I could be wrong.

I went down to lower level in the house. It stank down there. I traced the smell to another body of water coming in through a trench in a wall. After more investigation, I figured that the upstairs water was emptying in such a way that it was sloshing back up this trench and into the house, where it pooled and stagnated.

Once I understood the cause, I went back upstairs. I knew something needed to be done about it and that I couldn’t do it alone. I needed help.

Here, I pause. I explained and showed people, mostly men, the stagnant water. I think I explained it to my late father-in-law. Mostly, though, I explained it to strangers, and Roger or Ronnie.

With Roger/Ronnie, they came in, took a deep breath and said, “Something stinks.” I told them about the water, and then showed it to them. They said, “You’re right.” I said, “We need to so something about that.” They said, “You’re right,” with a big grin, “but I can’t. I don’t have the time.” Feeling exasperated by that point, I decided that I was the only one that understood and cared, and that I would need to do something about it.

The dream ended.

I feel like my dream is addressing my restlessness and frustration. It’s bothering me multiple levels, and I understand exactly what it is.

 

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Battering Dreams…

The last two nights’ dreams have battered me. Tempestuous and often shocking, they uncovered memories, eroding the foundations of my confidence, prompting A.M. shakiness.

In one dream, my wife and neighbors had killed another neighbor. He was married to one of the neighboring females. I didn’t understand why they’d killed him nor why they were unconcerned.

The police rounded them up. My wife and neighbors had skinned the body, though. As I heard it, they planned to eat the man. While I struggled to clarify what I heard, they cheerfully entered the police station. They weren’t being arrested. It turned out the police had already arrested one of the perpetrators for the crime, but now my wife and neighbors were picking him up. He was being released. I didn’t understand how or why.

Another memorable dream had people secretly plotting to kill a wealthy, powerful family. This dream took place in faded green light. Little was clearly seen beyond silhouettes. The powerful family — husband, wife, and three children — was being betrayed. A missile strike was being planned to take them out.

Learning about it, I furtively warned the family. The covertly relayed that they’d been suspicious and thanked me. I kept an eye on them and the man betraying them. I saw him on a telephone, on of those big and corded push-button desk phones that were popular last century. Sneaking up, I overheard him telling the killers to call off the strike because I’d warned the family.

He noticed me spying on them, so he hung up and I left. Coming around later, I heard him on the phone again, telling those on the other end to wait to launch the missiles until he called them. He wanted to kill me at the same time so that I couldn’t cause them trouble. The missiles were launched, but then recalled.

Another dream was about powerful rains. Heavy charcoal clouds thickened overhead, and then pouring rain shuttered visibility. Rain sluiced off roofs and overflowed storm drains and gutters. Torrents filled the streets. Pedestrians and drivers were freaked as cars and feet splashed through fast, rising water. The water rose until where I walked was a turbulent lake. The lights dimmed under the rain’s relentless pounding.

However, caught in the rain myself, I tried reassuring everyone. Telling them not to worry, I kept saying, “It’s just rain. Don’t worry. This will pass. We’ll be fine.” I couldn’t find anyone to stop and listen to me.

Then memories were uncovered of things others said about me. It was a miserable version of “This Is Your Life”, asshole. Bitter things I’d heard, things that I hadn’t realized that I learned about later, as people spoke behind my back.

Awakening, I realized how much of this is because I’m on the cusp of achievement and decisions that prompt reflections and fears, all around writing and publishing, sharing my work, baring my efforts to others, and being fearful of exposure as an untalented poseur.

A long walk on the way to write pacified much. Thinking about the dreams, I realized that in each, I was never personally affected. I was witness, observer, and bystander, relatively unscathed by the swirl around me. That took me to conclude, this is about emotions and uncertainty. Writing it out now helped me navigate my fears and struggle free of my negative energy, at least momentarily, make some decisions and take some actions.

Time to write and edit like crazy, at least one more time this year.

The Father and Me Dreams

My Dad was a special guest star in my dreams last night. I was a teenager in all of them, not really surprising, because that’s the era of my life that I saw the most of him, as I lived with him for three years after things became dark and unpleasant with Mom’s husband. Then I graduate from high school and left home.

In one memorable part of the dream, Dad and I were following a young tabby cat. The cat had gone down a sidewalk. I hurried after him, and discovered him rolling around on the cement walk in some freshly cut grass.

After that, the dream scenes fluttered and crackled. There was Dad and I driving in a car, and I’m looking out the window, checking out passing scenery. We throw a baseball back and forth in sunshine. I hear his laugh. Dad enjoys laughing.

The dreams grew darker and faster in nature. Then, suddenly, it became “This Is Your Life” from when I was in my mid-teens.

Life wasn’t going well. Most of my time was spent reading books, riding my bike, playing sports, drawing and painting, and listening to music. Although I enjoyed math, history, science, and literature, school was a bore. I was becoming a loner and acted out out a lot, and the dream managed to feature sharp memories of that era. In one sequence, a boy two years younger than me was riding a bike. A bunch of us children were in front of his house on a late summer afternoon. We weren’t doing much but hanging. I think I was fourteen. This kid, though, was riding around and bantering with others. Then I heard my sister say, “He spit on me.”

I don’t believe I’d ever reacted as fast to anything in my life, and I have always, from childhood on to even now, been known for amazingly fast reflexes.

He was riding his bike by me. My hand shot out, caught the rear of his bike and jerked it back, pulling it out from under him. As he fell free, I tossed the bike to one side, stepped forward, grabbed the kid, and hauled him to his feet. I told him he needed to apologize to my sister. I remember that other kids there were freaked out and afraid I was going to do something terrible to the kid. But he apologized to my sister. I released him. He took his bike and ran to his house.

His mother came out and confronted me. I was unapologetic. I told her nobody was going to spit on my sister while I was there. She didn’t know her son had spit on my sister. That changed things.

The scene was just a brief flash in my dream, the part where my sister said, “He spit on me,” and I grabbed his bike. I remembered the rest, along with other memories from that period, after awakening.

The whole dream and memory sequence left me emotionally shaken as I went about my morning routine. As I wondered why I’d dreamed so much about my father and childhood, I reached out to him to ensure he was okay.

Tunnel Thoughts

Mutterings of a harsh and mean nature whipped around him. All of it wasn’t about him, although that omniscient and omnipotent unseen ‘they’ kept forking him more than anything else.

Although he’d been going straight, a tunnel had swerved over him. Light became dark, up became down, and all became meaningless, a perfect mood, if you’re in an abused porta-potty — which he wasn’t, although, “in his mind,” quote, unquote, everything that he touched was shit, as was, in fact, everything that he’d ever done or had tried to do, and the world was hastening down the sluice, so, Good God, what’s the fucking use?

The obvious remained a quicksilver truth until he saw, damn, this is where I’m at. Make no sudden moves and keep your words to yourself. Be wary of the tunnel animals. They’re real and they’re not, but their teeth and claws are sharp. Keep going as straight as you can. The tunnel will swerve again.

It did, pouring him into sunshine on a smoked-filled day, letting him breath again, even though the air was polluted with particulates. Just been that time again, when he was going through a tunnel.

Another Anxiety Dream

It was another anxiety work dream last night, and I don’t even work! I haven’t been employed for several years after working for IBM for fifteen. I’ve been doing nothing but pursing the writing dream since then, after postponing that goal for a few decades.

The dream found me with two co-workers. I don’t recognize them from my life. The three of us were dressed in business suits with shirts and ties, the kind of attire I wore when I was in marketing. We were at a big convention to get some work, the kind of function that I was forced to endure, and that I hated. It was a familiar setting, a large but crowded and noisy ballroom in a hotel or convention center filled with tables with white tablecloths and napkins, and pseudo-fine china and flatware.

I don’t know what business the three of us were in but we were there to network and generate some leads so we could have an income. While we were talking, they informed me that I’d paid for the previous night’s meal. They were dismissive when they told me this, without humor or sympathy. They said that I had insisted.

Well, the bill was for over five hundred and fifty dollars. I’d put it on my Amex.

Horrified and shocked, I couldn’t believe what I’d done, and I didn’t remember doing it. Panic and anxiety filled me. This is when it got twisted.

I don’t have an Amex. I gave that up a few years ago. I never wore a suit and tie while I worked at IBM. (My marketing roles were with a couple previous start-ups.) Meanwhile, in the dream, I now worried that my employer, IBM, wouldn’t pick up that tab. Hell, that was completely against their policies, and I knew it. But I didn’t understand why I thought IBM still employed me even while I was there as an independent contractor, trying to generate business.

I was also sick with worry in the dream because my wife would be furious, because she knew IBM wouldn’t pay for it, so I’d need to eat that bill and pay for it myself. Funny, but in reality, that’s the sort of thing that she would shrug off, should it have happened.

Anxiety, frustration, confusion, worry, and fear. This dream had it all. Waking up and thinking about it, I knew it stemmed from my writing. I’m reaching the end of the beta version of the series, and I’m worried that all this was for naught, that I suck as a writer and story-teller, and have no creativity.

You know, just the typical writing angst.

With all of its elements, I recognized what it was all about, and laughed at how my mind works. The dream was beneficial, because it feels like a storm has blown through, leaving me relaxed and ready to write.

Monday’s Theme Music

Not an uplifting song, but one that inspires a sense of hope. “Everybody Hurts” by R.E.M. came out in 1992. It works as a vehicle for when you’re down and suffering, when the shit’s gone wrong, and you’ve hit the bottom, and you’re ready to start climbing back up again.

Knowing

Knowing someone was about to die, and not knowing, but having someone die unexpectedly, made little difference to him, he discovered. The death was a loss he felt, regardless of how much the other’s death was anticipated.

Nor did the quantity of tears shed reflect the pain he felt.

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