I began writing this post Thursday. Spouse called me that morning, needing me to run an errand right away. Then he and the M arrived. Long story short, I never got back to my laptop.
Wednesday night, I got a good night’s sleep! I had 3 dreams that I (at least partially) remember!
This one was the most complicated by far. There was a stage play. Sometimes I was one of the actors in it; sometimes I was observing the actors rehearsing, and other people in the audience were reporting to me [not sure what role that is — director?]. Sometimes the events of the play were actually happening, and I was in it.
Setting was New Brunswick, 1860s. A prosperous farm, way up in the north (I saw a hand-drawn map of the entire area). A man in his 40s seemed to be the main character; he was a widower, raising two teenage daughters, who were getting ready to be presented to society. He was having an affair with two adult women — I don’t know if they knew about each other. At some point, in the play, he surprises both of his lovers by telling them his daughters will be presented to society by “Mrs. McCann”, a woman who lives some distance away, a stranger to them. Almost as an aside, they discover he is actually married to this third woman. (This part happens with letters and illustrations.)
One of the daughters comes to me for advice about some personal issues. My real age (48) is relevant in some way. I’m fond of the girl, and I want to help, but I don’t know what she should do. I feel as though I am an honorary aunt. [[I don’t know who, in the cast of characters, I am. I am not any of the three women associated with the girl’s father.]]
In a different “scene” (but it’s my life, unfolding in real time), I’m in the man’s family house. Everyone generally lives on the first floor. But I’m exploring the second floor, and I discover pull-down ladders, leading to a third floor, that must be an attic. I wonder what could be up there. I climbed the ladders. Instead of a pull-down door, there is a rectangular hole. As a grown woman, I could certainly fit my hand, and maybe part of my arm through it. But not my head. And for some reason, I don’t think to try looking upwards through it. I’m just frustrated that I can’t get into it — I’m very curious!
Now I’m in the theater. I’m sitting some rows back from the front, as the cast rehearses. I recognize one of the actors as Tom Hayes (someone I attended 8 years of school with). During a scene, Tom breaks character to speak sotto voce to another actor, even though we can clearly hear what he’s saying. A white-haired woman in the audience, one of my subordinates, seated 2 rows ahead of me, turns back to me at that, and says, “we’ll have to break them of that habit”. Internally I agree, but outwardly I’m impassive.
+** + ** + **
For the very first time! I wake up feeling that the white-haired woman is an analog for P.
I’ve always wanted to visit the Maritime Provinces, but have never been that far northeast. Why New Brunswick? Why the 1860s? Why the elaborate social drama?
Why are the map, the (typewritten!) letters — and their illustrations — so clear in my mind’s eye?
Usually when there’s a room I’m very curious about, it’s subterranean (basement, cellar, crawl space). But Gramma’s house did have an attic, above the 3rd floor. I don’t know if you could actually stand up in it — I never did. There was a trapdoor, but I wasn’t allowed to enter it. I did peek up there once or twice, but was never able to see much.
Setting somehow both Oklahoma City and Toronto (?). I’m trying to meet up with my aunt and uncle who live in OKC. I’m driving around, possibly lost. I pass a venue that contains an exhibit by a well-known fibre (sic) artist, Karen Somebody. I’d like to stop in and see it, but it costs $30. So I keep driving. I definitely get lost.
Later on, I’m at home with my aunt and uncle. Sitting on their couch, in the privacy of my own head, I realize that I arrived where I meant to go (even though I don’t know how it happened exactly). That no one knew I even had adventures along the way. And they won’t know if I don’t tell them.
+** +** + **
I visited OKC a lot between c. 1974 (when my aunt and uncle moved there), and 1985, when I moved in with them. After that, I visited very sporadically: 1990 with Gramma; c. 1995 with Spouse; 2007 with Spouse, for a family wedding.
I’ve been to Toronto once. Spouse and I went there for a week as kind of a (delayed) honeymoon, 6 months after we married.
I don’t think I know (of) any fiber or fibre artists named Karen.
Sitting on the couch in my aunt and uncle’s house, with them doing other things in the same room, was companionable. Comfortable. No drama. I don’t think I’ve ever spent time like that with both of them (or either one, now that I think about it). So what do they represent?
In the dream, realizing no one knew of my adventures unless I told them . . . felt like a delicious secret I wanted to keep to myself. But now that I’m awake, I wonder if that aspect has something to do with being a writer?
[[This one was weird, and got weirder as I tried to think of how to explain it.]]
I’m in a windowless “observation room”, like the nerve-center for a bustling warren of offices. An institution of some sort, where some kind of hybrid [academic-government (?)] research is going on.
I sort of have an awareness that we’re “on stage” [[like the earlier dream, with the stage play]], although the other people in the room with me give no indication of knowing that. There are at least 3 other people: a woman psychologist (!), and her assistants, at least one of which is a young woman. (I don’t clearly recall the genders of the others.)
I don’t know anyone’s names.
The woman psychologist looks a bit like P, but her manner is brisker, more commanding. I am there to observe her at work, and I am doing that. She never acknowledges me, nor do the assistants. I’m not sure they knew I was there.
The woman psychologist is somehow conducting sessions with patients concurrently with being in the room with us. For each new session, she asks her assistants if they are “double-charging” the people who are observing the sessions (in different rooms from us) behind mirrored glass. Each charge is $2, so “double-charging” is $4 per session.
+** +** +**
Is this some kind of metaphor of how my own mind works? Like, maybe the woman psychologist is my Executive Function or my Higher Self, something like that.
What were the 2 categories that observers could be charged for?
So, I don’t remember my dreams for several days, then I have 3 dreams that I do remember and 2 of them have a character that resembles P?!? And one talks about money? In a way where there’s clearly some tension?!? Wow.
New Brunswick and Toronto? What does Canada signify in these dreams? Starting at least 12 years ago, I wished I was Canadian. Spouse and I talked about emigrating, but when we looked into it, it would’ve been prohibitively expensive, so we didn’t get very far. For years after realizing that, I felt like “being Canadian” was something I needed to become whole, in some way. So I kept mourning over the impossibility of it, long after I probably should’ve moved on. [[I haven’t thought about that in years.]]
Out of all the guys I went to school with, Tom Hayes? Why? Blond hair, good-looking (in an ordinary way — not my particular taste, except for the hair), a basketball player. Popular. Reasonably nice. Not particularly smart, creative, or funny, so I never had a crush on him. He knew my brother D because they both played basketball. Still puzzled.