A few days ago I read Oso's blog about a dream he had. I remember thinking at the time that I don't really tend to remember my dreams. But last night, I was reminded that I do have one dream that I remember - and it is not at all amusing, like Oso's was.
I have this recurring nightmare that involves the same 3 characters: myself, my daughter and her father. Her father and I are not together anymore. We were together for the first 13 months of her life and that was it. Since then, 6 years have past and we have thankfully heard not a peep from that man.
So here is the dream. The dream always starts out with us getting back together. My daughter is always around 2 or 3 in the dream - in need of day care and unable to tell me what is going on. In my dream I watch us doing regular family stuff like going to the park, eating ice cream, reading together, laughing and having fun. Somewhere along the line in the dream I think to myself - "How did I get sucked into this crap again?" All the old feelings of helplessness and anger start rushing back to me in my dreams. I am always taken back to that horrible place where I felt stuck in a relationship and don't know how to get out.
So then the dream moves on to a work day for me. I am on my way to work and my daughter is staying home with her daddy, who by this point in the dream is very close to the self desructive stage that he was in right before we split. I am nervous going to work because I don't know how safe things will be for her. I go anyway because I am the only one employed and what can I do? I call home several times during the day but do not get an answer. I know something is wrong but I feel trappeed to my work obligations and do not leave. By the time I get up the gumption to leave and frantically rush home - they are nowhere to be found. I have lost my baby to that man. It is clear that He has taken off with my baby. I then turn into a helpless, screaming and crying lunatic in my dream.
This is where I usually wake up in my dream. My heart is racing, I am taking very short breaths and I have to rush and turn the lights on and refocus and try to remember what the true reality is. I then rush over to my daughter's bed, kiss her, hug her and either jump in bed with her or carry her to my bed. I need to wrap my arms around her and remember that she is safe and close to me.
Why do I have this dream? I have taken care of custody paperwork a long time ago. Her father has not come close to trying to communicate with us, much less ask to spend time with us. If he were, I know he would have an extremely hard, if not impossible time of getting any custody back if he did come back into the picture at this point in her life. So what is the problem here? Is this dream really not about her father but my feelings of helplessness about not being able to protect my daughter from the dangers of the world?
As I sit here this morning at 5:14 am - I am hoping that writing this dream out will help me to remember that this dream was just that, a dream.
And now, I am going to go back to bed and hold my baby close and try and think pleasant thoughts.