Monday, May 13, 2013


A dream plagued me last night. Or, a specific character. Over and over again I awoke in a bothered state and looked at my cell. Thirty minute bouts of time. Each moment of waking was heavier, more tired, and eventually a throbbing deeply rooted itself in the left temporal lobe. The sun was shining but the room cried rest so a silent spell was muttered to banish its clarity.

As usual I went about my day unsure but dreamy.  I decided on the first few order of things - breakfast, yes, but then what, how about reading that play, writing that blog or cleaning the floor of your room? Since the OCD nerves are most sensitive in my feet, I desperately swept the dirt and cat hair from the bedroom floor. Cleanliness is next to Godliness. Amen. 

I nestled in comfortably to read "The 39 Steps" by Patrick Barlow - a comical and staged adaptation of the Alfred Hitchcock film. I have not been so thoroughly entertained when reading a play in AGES.  It wasn't just structured in perfect cleverness, it is also the kind of play one would have the time of their life performing.  Marvelous dialogue, classy melodrama with hilarious tongue-in-cheek tones - and dialects. Lots and lots of dialects.  I wound up dreaming within the reading, imagining the only female role so vividly and almost achingly, delighting in every banter and move she made. ('Why, I'd be perfect for that role!' the Actress thought)

Then the combatant mental reel turned on like a haunted radio, invading my mind not with possibilities, but possible impossibilities. Obstacles, hurdles, and skittish opportunities that appeared like brown rabbits in an autumn wood, lost upon approach. These thoughts were draining the half cup full!  Not destroying, but threatening and bullying any attempt to dream in good faith. It's strange when something we love - even an idea - is also so prone to our pain and hurt.  We lash out at our own good thoughts. Just the other night, a strange human sound wafted in from outside leading me to step onto the fire escape: was it laughter, was it tears? Protest? 

I looked down to see a man, huddled but standing against the brick wall by a dumpster, in a half light from the alley lamp-post. He was sobbing uncontrollably as a larger man moved to embrace him saying," I'm sorry, I just can't control it sometimes."  I froze, but was drawn forward to calculate and understand. I wanted to yell "Are you okay?" but there was only fear of the worst in my throat. This moment carried on with incessant crying at some sort of apology without being an apology.  Resistant embraces. Fear and love.  Words not reflecting behavior.  I silently turned and ran to call on some help.  It became apparent that these two men were lovers and were physically and verbally abusing each other. Eventually, the sob-stricken man weakly followed his boyfriend like a dying shadow down the alley and out of the light.

My heart sank. Because when you need someone THAT much - that you allow them to strike you, lash out at you and then hold you, as if they were the only thing that existed (and not just once or twice) - it is not worth it.  I do not want to NEED my dreams because that is not how they are born. They are born out of a simple love and pure desire of the heart.  They are meant to be followed with strength, optimism and personal illumination - not crawled after in shame, surrender or especially guilt. A dream should not be both your lover and your tormentor. And the harping voices that whisper-scream to jade, fade, and beat down the beauty? Don't just avoid them in the school hall between classes. Stand up to them and reveal WHO YOU ARE and who you've always been since you - the Creator - began your dream. This isn't R.U.R.

That broken man obviously felt he had no one else to turn to, but that was his delusional crux.  Understand that one cannot live on a dream alone - else it is a foolish attempt to sustain health on imaginary food while in reality the body withers away.   In the meantime, sow fulfillment in the normalcy of life - however that materializes; friends, gardening, cooking, writing, church, books,  film, cleaning (ahem) - something!  

I have to hold on to my dream every single day. I also must to add to it, but it is worth questioning what is becoming of the plant we water.  Is it a grand perennial or is it Audrey II from Little Shop of Horrors?  (FEEEEEEEED me, Evaaaa!) How is pursuing your dream changing you?  Make sure it is for the better no matter what enemies lurk and grasp - physical, mental, emotional or otherwise. When you spot an enemy on the horizon - simply breathe them away. Recall a moment of joy you have had connected to that dream. Or...just say "Hey, it's a dream." And stride on. 

I want to you leave you with the words of Ang Lee upon winning his first oscar for Brokeback Mountain (Um, sidebar they are making that into a  Warning: a brief sob is possible and also perfectly okay. It should always be. This may be serious stuff but that doesn't mean we can't enjoy it. 

Hopefully when I see you next, I'll have something dream-related to boast about...

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