Tuesday, January 17, 2006

muddy water

i had a very strange dream last night.

i’m on my way to an appointment with my therapist (scheduled for today, by the way) and it’s raining buckets – the kind of torrential downpour that always gives me a naughty thrill of excitement, wondering what’s going to flood next. the kind of deluge that makes the creek in our backyard, usually a mild inch or two of flowing water, threaten to overflow its five-foot banks. the kind of storm that i want to listen to from the inside of a yurt.

so i am, for some reason, walking down williams street to the counseling center, apprehensive that the street i have to cross is flooded – looks like about five inches of water. well, ok, i’m gonna get wet. but i have to go to this appointment, no question about it. into the flood i wade.

i realize immediately that i’m screwed – the flood level is more like five feet, and the street has turned into a river, its current flowing strongly away from where i need to go. i have to swim through it, but i can’t seem to get enough strength to fight the current. the water is brown, muddy, cold, and intrusive – trying its best to get into my mouth and lungs. violent.

cut to me opening the door of the counseling center, dripping mud and water all over the carpet.


while working with a group in new york city, i learned that water is a symbol of the emotional world. oceans, rivers, lakes, waterfalls – all these can sometimes point to your emotional state. in this case i think it’s spot-on. i’ve been so irritated and cranky and generally pissed off over the last few days that i’m really looking forward to a session with brent where i can just unload all this nastiness i’m holding back. and there’s a part of me that sees this as a Very Scary Thing - what happens when you open the floodgates?

i don’t feel like i can really be myself at home, and neither does skipper – we’ve both acknowledged that much, at least. picking on each other and maintaining a sense of humor is difficult, to say the least. we can’t seem to manage it without pissing each other off. there’s a fair amount of resentment on both our sides here.

and you know how some people just rub you the wrong way? it’s not something you can really put a finger on, it’s just a constant awareness of emotional discomfort – i don’t know what the hell it is. i’d love to be able to figure it out and let it go – but maybe i have to let it go without figuring it out.

i tried some yoga last night before bed. couldn’t really get comfortable – i felt self-conscious, wondering if skipper or brian would come out and sniff at my silly hippie new-age practices. tried the corpse pose and felt utterly exposed. scared. not safe. another wave of resentment – if i can’t feel safe at home, where can i feel safe? the conference room of our plant, where rb and i lock ourselves in several times a week to practice? my car? my bedroom (which desperately needs an airing out after a couple weeks of laundry backlog)?

i daydream about having a tiny yurt in my back yard. some place circular, enclosed, safe, quiet. a place i could hang prayer flags without feeling as if i were intruding on someone else’s belief system. a place i could drape silk on the walls and burn incense. a place where i could be silent, and quiet, and not worry about my silence giving offense to those with whom i live. a place where i could feel free, and me, and safe.

and there's nothing wrong with dreaming.


James said...

I too long for a place where I can get away to practice for days on end. I guess I have learned to make that spot in the middle of chaos as things will never be exactly the way we want them.

I hope things settle down for you soon.

oldwhitelady said...

your water dream reminded me of childhood when we had to cross a wooden bridge (my father put up) over a large creek to walk up the forresty path to get to the schoolbus. One spring, it flooded and as we walked on the bridge, the water came up over our ankles and rushed by. When we finally made it to the bus stop, we waited in vain. Finally walking down the gravel road to a bridge, we found the bus stranded in the water. We crossed through the water and walked farther up to the last pickup point and there were the rest of the children and the busdriver.

Doesn't that sound quite similar to your dream?

I sure hope you and Skipper will be able to get along and find true friendship. It's not easy with him being there so much.