A few weeks ago, during a particularly tough time in my life (nothing bad like a death in the family or an illness or a job loss, just my brain going haywire), my friend Meredith told me to pay close attention to my dreams, as I may be trying to tell myself something. I was tired, I was stressed, I was confused, depressed, deflated, creatively bankrupt, lonely, sad…all of those things. And I just couldn’t shake it. I was afraid that my misery was going to make my husband leave me. I was afraid that my baby daughter would grow up thinking her mom was a mopey loser. After a bath and a prayer, I went to sleep.
That night I dreamt of moving. I dreamt of leaving home, of traveling somewhere. I dreamt of my family and friends, and I dreamt of Christmas. Whenever I explain to people what ‘good emotions’ feel like, I inevitably use Christmas as an example. Christmas is joy and happiness you don’t have to work on. You don’t have to wake up on Christmas and say “I’m just going to TRY and be happy today”. You don’t WORRY on Christmas. You live right there in the moment on Christmas. You don’t dread the future on Christmas. Christmas reminds you of family and hope and magic and wonder and love and faith, and what’s good about being alive.
No one wakes up on February 5th feeling like that.
Anyway, in my dream my mother gave me four statues made of wax; a Christmas Elf, a Snowman, a Santa Claus and a Little Girl In A White Coat. As the dream progressed, and as I traveled, moved away from home, I lost the statues that I promised to keep forever. All but one, the girl in the white coat.
Convinced that this dream somehow indicated I was dying of a brain tumor (you’ll find I’m a hypochondriac), I consulted Meredith for her indepth analysis of the dream. She’s an immeasurable talent at this, combining psychology, her skills as a budding medium and good ol’ fashioned friend to friend advice. She assured me I was not dying, or rather, not dying at any significant rate of speed beyond natural human decay. What she did tell me was that the four statues represented me.
The Elf represents my jovial, fun, worryfree self. It represents my love of jokes and gifts and make believe, my ambition and imagination, my “big plans” and flights of fancy. It may also represent my love of jingly hats.
The Snowman represents my selfish/cold side. I initially thought this was bad, but in retrospect, and re-reading the analysis, I realize that it represents my self preservation, the part that ‘takes care of me’ and protects me and is willing to say “no”. It’s the part of me that can be cold and aloof and solitary.
The Santa Claus represents my, well, love of Christmas, my giving spirit, my selfishness, compassion, my love of childhood, of tradition and heritage.
And the Little Girl In The White Coat is who I am and no matter how much I want to deny it, it’s how others see me. Other people see the good in me (for the most part). It’s who I think is the best manifestation of me, my good qualities shining, my bad ones well hidden. The little girl is happy in her family, feels safe, feels healthy. The little girl has a bright outlook, faith, hope and love.
Meredith told me that it was important that I didn’t lose that statue. But I was frantically searching for the other three, the other parts of myself that I’ve lost. So anyway, this is my blog. I’m looking for my little elf lately,fostering my little snowman,working with that little Santa Claus, and trying to be that girl in the white coat.
And my husband, for some reason, has always called me Donkey.