The Power

Prompt: Disturbing

woman flying

There were a couple of illuminating aspects of an exhausting dream I had last night. (No need to read on— other people’s dreams can be paralyzingly boring— but if you have any interest in dream significance or interpretation, it might be tolerable.)

I was lost in my dream New York City, which has elements of the actual city, but like many of my dream cities is more a travel brochure version (with obscure references thrown in for good measure). Tall buildings, crowds, millions of storefronts, subways, and trains, and a main street upon which I walk in search of…

This time I was in search of the building where my sister lives, a vintage mid-rise apartment block in a neighbourhood of vintage mid-rise apartment blocks. I knew where it was, but somehow was very lost, walking miles and miles out of my way, for hours and hours, through strange neighbourhoods (like “Jamaicatown”) and the docks, sometimes on busy, crowded sidewalks, sometimes in menacingly empty industrial areas. On and on, the frustration and anxiety growing unbearably.

At one point I bought and wore a green dinosaur suit and danced along the street uncaring— Revelation number one: Sometimes we are pushed to a point past caring, where alarming unorthodox behaviour is a release, and feels good. I will look at the square pegs, the sometimes scarily weird people, differently from now on.

At another point, after a gruelling attempt to reach my destination by taking a route off the main street, I found myself further away from my sister’s flat than I could ever imagine; across an inlet, on much higher ground, with the city seemingly inaccessible now, after the interminable unsuccessful efforts to navigate it. So I said to myself, “I’ll just have to fly” and started to lift myself off the ground.

Then, as a crossed the inlet high above the water, I said to myself with exasperation, “Why didn’t I do this earlier?”

Why indeed? Flying in dreams can be difficult; often concentration is needed to keep me aloft, but it is immensely liberating, especially when, as in this dream, I will it— a dream intervention.

Revelation number two: Sometimes we have to consciously free ourselves from the things that hold us back. We forget our own power, that we have resources that can seem magical when they actually lift us out the quicksand of confusion or indecision.

To recap: We are all vulnerable sometimes, and sometimes pushed to a place beyond our control or understanding, causing us to behave uncharacteristically, impulsively, loopily, and we should maybe learn to sympathize and forgive ourselves and others when this occurs. Oppressive feelings, whether of depression, loss, confusion, doubt, or fear, drag us down, but we need to remember that we have the power within us to help lift us up and out and away, where we can feel free and find some perspective.

…Perhaps I should say “I” instead of “we”— but I found the dream to have such valuable messages that I wanted to share it. My alarm awakened me from this dream and I truly was emotionally exhausted (in the dream I was also physically spent and very hungry). Don’t you think one of the most delicious things in life is to wake from a disturbing dream and find it was all an unpleasant brain fantasy?

Careful in the Bathroom

Prompt: Hesitate

Dear Wednesday,

Some people wonder why I won’t fly. In planes. I used to travel quite a lot, mostly to Europe, but also Africa, the Americas, the Middle East, and Polynesia, and would love to visit Vietnam or Cambodia. But flying is far too stressful.

It is not the worry of crashing on takeoff or landing, or engine failure or terrorism. No, the hesitation is caused by the greediness of airlines and the stupidity of governments. I won’t wait hours in lineups. I won’t surrender my shoes. I won’t surrender a few ounces of contact lens solution. I won’t watch my grandmother get patted down by security. I won’t go through an x-ray machine that displays my private bits. I won’t be interrogated by untrained security personnel. I won’t pay extra to take luggage with me on a vacation. I won’t be bumped from my flight because of “overbooking”. I won’t sit through long periods of flight delay with no explanation. I won’t sit in a row of four seats that used to be a row of three. I won’t have my kneecaps broken by the seat in front of me. I won’t breath dry, stale air and the germs, farts, and body odour of too many people crammed into a too small space. I won’t tolerate rudeness from overworked flight attendants. I won’t pay extra for disgusting food. I won’t drink whatever that hot drink is. I won’t stand in more lineups. I won’t wait for hours for lost luggage to be found. I won’t have a six week long bout of flu after returning home. [Rant temporarily over]

May I present one cartoon that addresses my hesitation; one that make as much sense as nonsensical and irrational security regulations; and one cartoon that makes me, having lived in Texas, laugh.




Happy travels!