Friday, August 31, 2012

Dreams. And not the good kind.

I have really bad dreams. Like really bad.

Just the other night I was tortured and raped.  I wake up yelling or kicking often.  I began dreaming of my mother nightly the beginning of this year as my sister's wedding approached.  Once the wedding was over in March, I stopped dreaming of her. In the dreams, we would be fighting, verbally and physically.  Her breath would smell and she would spit on me as she hurled insults, a replica of the real, live mother I used to know.  I was so relieved when these nightmares stopped.

But they didn't stop for long.

Leaving You …For the past 6 weeks I've been dreaming of her again.  The dreams always begin the same:  For some reason, there is a crisis in my life I have to move back home with her.  Living with her is the last and final option for me.  I never know what the crisis is; I just know that I end up back in her house, the house that was once supposed to be my home, but never felt like anything but hell.  In the dream it feels like hell, too.  And I think that's what makes these "bad dreams" actually "nightmares", "night terrors" even.  The feelings are so real, the events so real and similar if not spot on to things I really experienced growing up.  We fight and fight, and finally I've had enough and I start packing my bags.  I have so much stuff, in the garage, under the bed, in the closet.  Packing it all up as fast as possible and getting the hell out of there is such a heavy task.  I don't feel sad.  I feel angry.  Very angry.  She just stands there in silence and watches me pack my stuff.  Sometimes I wake up before I finish packing.  Sometimes my attempt to go pack is interrupted by a fight.  These are the times I wake up yelling and kicking.  I am yelling at her, kicking and punching trying to keep her away.

My dream last night had a very disturbing moment.  My sister, the one who just got married, said to me --in response to my not being able to live with our mother any longer--"Mom told me that you haven't really had enough and she's not ready to stop."  While dreaming, this comment, these words that my mother said, and said to my sister, was the biggest punch I'd taken yet.  And when I woke, I couldn't get this line out of my head.  Thinking about it now, I feel sad.  I am confused, unsure why such a powerful statement in a dream could translate into such strong feelings in real life.  And at the exact moment I understood what my sister was saying in my dream, I felt the connection to my real self, to my about-to-wake-up self.  It was like my dream self was talking to my real self, but without words.  Just feelings and silence in a realm that doesn't actually exist.

I've had an entire work day and have now begun my holiday weekend.  I am living.  This is real life.  But still, I am haunted by those words in an all-too-real unconscious world.  She's not ready to stop.  To stop blaming me for her mistakes.  To stop shaming me for my own.  And I don't mean my mother.  You haven't really had enough.  I've replaced my mother's insults.  I've replaced her blame and distorted reality.  I am my mother and I am parenting myself with the same bullshit she parented with.

Why haven't I really had enough?

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