May, 2011

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5/1/11 - Title: "No Cheating, and Take Five"

Scene 1 - I am being given a test, a pen and paper one, along with a large group of others who are much younger, as if we are completing a class and this is the final exam. It is not easy, but I think I do it well. As I turn it in to the women teachers or proctors, I think it is possible I even made 100%. I am sure I did well enough they may even wonder if I cheated, but I know I did not.

Scene 2 - I am the oldest (in my sixties) and shortest member of a military unit, a company (I think) of men. They are a great bunch of young guys. They have been in training, and I was hired as a technician or instructor here, a civilian employee of the Department of the Army (which in reality I was for a little over four years). The men like me a lot, and the somewhat more senior drill sergeant (big, Black, extremely fit, probably in his forties), named Jim, realizing we are about to take a physical fitness test (that the other men already passed) on a new apparatus, unknown to me or the CO (commanding officer) has adjusted it to make it easier to workout on for shorter people. It is set up at a doorway, so, before a person goes through the door from right to left (from my observer point of view then), each man is to leap or reach up, grab a bar, and do a series of physical maneuvers, starting with pull-ups or chin-ups, to develop, maintain, and demonstrate proficiency in a good level of physical conditioning.

Everybody in the unit is also very fit and has passed this test. The new, young CO likes me too, but he wants us all to operate as a unit, and he knows the men will not completely respect me till I can show proficiency on the door apparatus too.

So, at the end of the day, he takes me over to the new door apparatus to show me how and then coach me on doing it too. He discovers it is now too easy. It is adjusted so, though it is no walk in the park for a short, older guy like me, it is possible to do it (complete the test) and so impress the men. When he (who is fairly short too, but not as short as I am, and maybe in his late twenties) tries to do it, it is way too easy for him. He asks me if Jim had adjusted it for me. I tell him I honestly don't know, but he had known the CO and I would be conferring, and I add: "He may have figured out you'd ask me to do it."

So he goes to get the drill sergeant, Jim, and get it adjusted back to the way it was for the other men. He wants no cheating to make it easier for me. I must try it the right way, and if I fail (as we both know I shall) then I must keep working out on it till, in uniform like everyone else, I am able to pass using the doorway apparatus, too, even if with difficulty, and then I shall have personal pride, and also the men will really be proud of me and know I am one of them. The way he expresses it, I am embarrassed that Jim has made things too easy, so that, if I had passed, it would have been through cheating, and, though I know it will be hard, almost impossibly hard, I am determined I'll get into shape, till I can eventually pass it legitimately as well. In my dreamer's mind's eye, I can see myself finally passing the door apparatus test and can feel the thrill of acceptance, pride, and cohesion with all the other men of the unit when I do.

Scene 3 - I am in a room with a male roommate, as if we are college students. We hear a saxophone piece fairly close by. "Hey, that's Dave Brubeck!" I say. Sure enough, it is the Dave Brubeck Quartet, playing one of his more popular jazz pieces from the early 1960s. I hear the lively upbeat tune clearly, and we go to see if we can find and watch the performance. I am joyous. This is so cool!

[In my dreams, the CO or commanding officer is often a version of my higher power. I note that Jim's (or the drill sergeant's) name, Jim, could also be spelled "Gym." After having the dream, I realized that, with this month (also the fifth month of the year), it has been exactly 5 years since I began going to dream groups and recording my dreams in that connection. Five is a significant number for me, corresponding with a spiritual experience I had back in the mid-1960s in which I lost my ego and went to "Heaven." There are also, in the tradition of the main meditation group I was involved with for several years, five names in the meditation mantra for God, corresponding with the lowest to highest levels of Heaven. The numbers in the dreams suggest unity, integration, dawning awareness, transformation, manifestation in reality, creativity, and waiting. I feel as though my work on Alanon's Steps 10 and 11 is a kind of regimen, not unlike working out to achieve physical fitness, though here the outcome may hopefully involve greater spiritual fitness. "At the end of the day (the bottom line)," my spiritual commanding officer is in this dream letting me know he will countenance no cheating (shortcuts), and it will not be easy, but that I shall pass the tests, a mark of deserved personal pride as well as of unity and cohesion within. The final scene is like a graduation ceremony given a bit in advance, an expression of spontaneous joy. I cannot, before yesterday, remember ever having had musical dreams. Now I have had two in a row.]

5/2/11 - Title: "In the Wrong Place and Out of Adjustment"

Scene 1 - I am a student and needing to complete two more courses to finish my degree. Their completion has already been delayed more than once. Unfortunately, I am in a different city than the campus where I am registered for the courses. I do not even know the location of their classes. Several weeks have already gone by, and I have yet to attend my first class in the other city where they are being held. For some reason, I had not gotten notification about the classes. Another man (a roommate?) who lives here has advised me about them and that I am missing my classes. I decide I must get back to the correct city. It will be difficult and embarrassing to come to terms with the situation. However, this close to getting my degree, I need to go ahead and start the courses and do my best to catch up and then finish them, even with only a barely passing grade, a C, and put this preparatory part of my life behind me, so I do not have to come back and once more use up several months or another year or so in order to complete what I had begun some time ago.

Scene 2 - I am riding a bicycle. Very briefly, I feel well balanced on it, heading toward my destination, a city well down the road (perhaps where my classes are), though the way is quite complicated and my route is amid dangerous traffic. Very quickly, I find that the seat is set way too high for me and that I cannot maintain my balance on it this way. I stop at the side of the road to adjust it. Traffic is whizzing about. The seat adjustment mechanism is loose, and it will take some extra manipulation of it to get it right and then tightened sufficiently. I lack the right tools to do the job quickly. My situation is tenuous, and I cannot use the bicycle this way.

[I think the dream may be about my needing to complete two more steps in the Alanon 12-Step Program, 11 and 12, yet something is not right in at least two ways, so that where I sit (city = sit-y] is wrong and, partly for reasons out of my control, I have not been receiving the needed lessons. In reality, for instance, one of my sponsors is now living in another city, so that we no longer meet but only communicate some of the time by phone. My other sponsor is quite busy and is preoccupied with stressful concerns of her own, such as her job being in jeopardy, and shows little enthusiasm for our communicating well, at times being unavailable for several days at a time and not responding to my messages, though she does still meet with me in person once a month, and we do average at least shortened phone conversations about once per 7-10 days, after I have called usually more than once to get in touch.

My situation within more obviously reflects the dream. There seems to be good access to my feelings, but often they are very uncomfortable, such as panic, seriously fretting at times over not being easily in touch with my woman sponsor, concerns about relations with certain others, worries that I have not done or said the right thing on select matters, a sense of having way too much to do in time remaining before a vacation is due to begin, and anger that is close to the surface, ready to manifest if someone says the "wrong" thing to me.

Thus, I am emotionally somewhat unbalanced or out of balance, lacking equanimity. "From where I sit," my way forward is not clear, my expectations may be too high, or I may not be well enough grounded (set too high). My way of getting through life is dysfunctional. Although I have been taught various tools within the Alanon program, I do not have ready access to them now that they are needed. For instance, I do not yet feel comfortable with my relationship with a higher power, so that prayer is as yet a kind of mechanical exercise, something I engage in as if it might be relevant rather than with any personal sense of actual connection (outside of dreams) with a power greater than myself. The reality seems to be that I am as yet not ready to move on in the 12-Step Program and need to recommit myself to learning and applying the Alanon tools to get myself back into better adjustment, correct how I "sit" (which also may be a reference to not meditating well of late), and in fairly basic ways repair my means of going through life.]

5/3/11 - Title: "Constance Likes My Memoir"

I am in a wheelchair, also in a bizarre setting, hard to describe, with a boardwalk and students. It is seemingly a kind of school, a boarding school for elementary or junior high kids, very near the ocean. A tall, smart young woman, evidently head of the school or an influential one of the teachers, approaches me and asks if I'd consider publishing my memoir. I am flattered, surprised she had even heard of it. She says, "Oh, yes," that it is already known in her school. Then I tell her I do not think it that marketable. For instance, there are parts of it unsuitable for folks like her students or others of that age. She disagrees and says she thinks it is quite suitable. A couple of the students nearby, a girl and a boy, chime in, surprisingly already familiar with it too, and say they agree with her, saying most of the students in the school have read it already and that it is suitable for kids their ages.

By now I have climbed out of my old fashioned (like FDR's? wicker? woven bamboo?) wheelchair, so that I am on the floor, ground, or boardwalk and am sort of under it (the wheelchair) and sort of behind it, pulling myself along by my arms (my legs apparently being crippled) and am looking up at the students and the teacher/head of the school. I then agree, pleased and surprised at the whole thing, saying if they think it OK for general audiences, even kids, then I'd be glad to have it published, though I do not know how to market it. She assures me it would market itself, or at least could once it were published.

[The tall, smart woman in the dream reminds me of Constance, a woman in her late 20s, an excellent artist, very smart, tall, upbeat, extroverted, and beautiful, who could easily be a model or actress, but who actually works at a high level in marketing for a big New York City company. She is my nephew Jim's roommate. The first part of my memoir, covering late 1971 through early 1976, was read by my brother, Ralph, before he died, and, though we were often competitive, he thought it very good. A major NPR producer has also read my essay about witnessing a lobotomy operation and said I am an excellent story writer. Of course, my ego would be pleased if the memoir were published. So much for the dream's ties to reality.

Metaphorically, it may be significant that my Constance anima thinks well of my abilities to communicate through written expression to people in general and thus to my various inner male and female selves, even to the still growing parts of myself (or my projects) and that they agree. Yet what publishing my memoir might mean in the dream still eludes me. Presumably it is making it public. However, what does that suggest? Clearly it is not literally about publishing the memoir or putting it out in some fashion for public consumption.

Since most of my dreams lately are about progress through the Alanon 12-Step Program, this one probably is as well. Steps 10 and 11, which I am on now, relate to a series of self-assessments as well as to my relationship with the spiritual, the same themes as were intensely the subjects of that part of my journal/memoir. Perhaps the dream is recommending I review that period of my memoir/journal as a way of helping complete Steps 10 & 11.

In addition, I note that an issue that comes up in the dream is whether or not I can successfully market the memoir. The "me-moir" (or perhaps "me more") doubtless is a stand-in here for "me," and so we might translate the marketing question into whether or not I can successfully market myself vs. continuing to be rather shy, reticent, lacking in confidence, and self-effacing.

The Constance anima is apparently there by example to model or act the part of the qualities she represents. They are being commended in the dream to me: being smart, standing tall, and being artistic, upbeat, extroverted, and competent at a high level in marketing, i.e. in self-promotion.]

5/4/11 - Title: "Bring Out Your Jews"

It is a scene reminiscent of the funny scene in a Monty Python movie, in which there is a man repeatedly calling out for people to "Bring out your dead!" and he has a wagon or a wheelbarrow or some such there for collecting the bodies as they are tossed or brought out. Except here the call is for the Jews, and it is a woman who is here to receive them, it is not funny at all, and they are still alive. It is understood that they are being persecuted (by some persons or regime not seen) and that unless taken out they will soon be dead. It is somewhere in Europe in the 1930s. The woman who is here for them is middle-aged and unremarkable. She has just taken it upon herself to provide a cart and her companionship to assist Jews in leaving before it is too late. There is no particular drama about her or the situation. Rather, it is just matter-of-fact, that if the Jews are not rescued they may soon be killed. I actually do not hear her or anyone else calling out for the Jews. It is as though the call has gone out already and that everyone just understands it is time for Jews, one or two at a time, to leave with the woman and her cart and become refugees. Not many are heeding the call, but enough that she can aid them in this way, a very few at a time. It is understood that she will help one or two, then come back for others.

[Of Jewish people, I am struck by their having an amazing resilience in the face of incredible persecution through the centuries, of being highly intelligent, well educated, artistic, of making great contributions in all fields. As a youngster, born in World War II and very aware of Jewish refugees as well as Holocaust victims, for many years I identified with Jewish people, probably partly because then I saw myself as a victim and as not understood by the dominant culture. On the other hand, maybe I was also feeling guilty, because, though my ancestors came to this country long before the Holocaust, I am partly German-American and so in a sense it was some of my forebears who were the persecutors and killers of the very people with whom I identified.]

5/5/11 - Title: "Steps Will Be Taken"

I am a new person at a disability adjudication office, but, from an earlier career, have much more experience at the job than the others, who are both men and women and relatively young. (It is not clear if I am just visiting, an official consultant, or have been newly hired to determine disability cases here, but I have valuable information to pass along to these folks.) They are all at their desks in neat rows, maybe five rows of them (at their desks) across, and at least ten deep, in a large open work area.

I tell them of the coming surge of cases and that there are not enough of them (the disability examiners) to handle the increased caseload unless they find legitimate ways to process and clear the claims from their caseloads much faster than they have been doing up till now. I suggest they get used to allowing as many claims as they reasonably can, as expeditiously as possible, to get their caseloads way down before the big influx of new cases arrives. The steps for determining the denials will also need to be greatly streamlined. I point out that they are working without computers or the other most modern means of efficiently dealing with large caseloads, but that steps will be taken to improve the situation for them.

[At this time, I am stymied by this dream, only catching on to parts of it. 5 probably represents creativity as well as waiting. 10 can be an "amped up" 1, meaning an emphasized unity, wholeness, completeness, good integration, or it can mean 5 times 2, with the two suggesting dawning awareness. Ten can also be the Alanon Step 10 (as in "steps will be taken"), about doing a daily personal inventory and making amends, if called for (in this case perhaps for underrating myself, not giving myself enough credit and so still being reticent, ashamed of developing a strong ego ("me-more" from "memoir") or of marketing myself, seeing myself as "suitable," as not crippled, such as came out in dream group last night, or it can mean "progress and success"(I Ching). The product of 5 times 10, the approximate number of desks and disability workers, is 50. This suggests the glass being half-full vs. half-empty, 50% in each case. 50 may also be "over the hill" or it can mean "great progress and success" (I Ching). I like that last option!

All the new cases arriving soon might be about options for a decision or decisions that will be called for, as in: in this case vs. in that case, "in each case," etc.

There perhaps will be a need to make a large succession of "yes" or "no" choices, i.e. to allow (affirm = yes) vs. deny (turn down or negate = no), before long, either in the real world and/or within.

"deep" suggests that some of these decisions and cases will involve profound issues or feelings or shadow concerns or realizations.

There are multiple younger shadows and animas, so it seems there are or will be a number of projects and/or growing energy aspects of myself involved.

I feel that both "desk" and "cases" (or "caseloads") are in some way puns, but right now am not getting any "hits" on what they might stand for, besides themselves.

It does seem likely that in a certain way the dream is about Alanon issues, since I have had a whole series of nearly nightly dreams lately, all of which appear to be tied into work on the Alanon 12-Step Program, and in this "case" there are at least a couple clear references to "steps" right in the dream. In "case" it is relevant, then, I have just completed Step 10 - though that is not quite true, as it is a maintenance step and is never really finished - and now am working on Step 11, developing through prayer and meditation a closer connection with my HP, seeking to carry out my HP's will for me, and acquiring (through the HP) the means to carry that out.

"rows" might have to do with disagreements in a relationship, though, if that is the meaning, it may be in the future, since I am unaware of any significant extra rows of that type in the real world lately. Or it may be about clashes within. Again, I am not conscious of such. I am clutching at straws here, but theoretically I can see that, if there were a bunch of decisions to be made or options to choose from (different "cases") and extra pressure to make the right choices, pro or con, etc., then that could well set me up for some internal rows and even beating myself up a lot, if I am not sure I have chosen correctly in a number of instances.

The only at all pending situation that comes to mind in the real world which might qualify is one for which I have no conscious or logical basis in assuming that it is imminent, the severe illness or death of my mother. I would need to "step" in and make a large number of decisions in a hurry in either "case." She is very healthy for her age, though, especially given that she drinks quite a bit, still teaching/leading aerobics classes several times a week, actively planning social gatherings, doing extra volunteer work, etc. Nonetheless, she is 88, and odds are she will succumb to severe injury or illness within the next few years at most.

I do feel that assessment is not "it," however, and that the dream applies instead to something more fundamental and personal.

Since in the just interpreted dream before this I was crippled, unable to move my legs of their on volition, there is now something of a recurrent dream idea of disability. Perhaps the disability at issue is my own.

The ego is suggesting that the adjudicators quickly allow many of the existing disability claims in order to make room for many more, but maybe this is another instance of the ego being wrong, and that the wiser course is to deny multiple claims I might come up with about my own lack of ability (dis-ability). Hmm. That is interesting.

If so, this also might represent an unexpected way to become closer to the will for me of my HP (Step 11) as well as to make amends to myself (Step 10), for undermining myself so much of the time. In this fashion, I could fulfill the dream's prediction that "steps will be taken," that is, those steps would be done, in this instance, via my making amends for and disallowing claims that I am disabled.

It is a possibility, but does not yet explain the role of the "desks." And what does it mean that "the steps... will need to be greatly streamlined." (An indication that as yet I am not versatile in the use of Alanon tools?)

That they are working "without computers" suggests that my current decision making processes are being handled without much use of my thinking brain. Hmm.]

5/10/11 - Title: "No Lasting Joy On My Spiritual Plane"

I am a passenger on a big commercial jet liner. We (the other passengers or crew, a large number of men and women) are going at great height through an area of large clouds and turbulent conditions. At first we are OK. It is even exhilarating. Yet then we are going down rapidly. There is a feeling of falling, of being out of control. It seems a long way down, yet too soon we are going to crash.

[How might one live if it really sank in, that we are all going to die, that even the timing is probably not up to us? Charlotte Joko Beck says our human condition is not like that of a regular traveler on jet liners, used to going on multiple long flights in well controlled circumstances, but is instead more like that of the pilot of a flimsy glider somehow caught aloft in the eye of a hurricane. No question we are going to die, likely sooner than we would like, but meanwhile we may as well take it all in and enjoy to the fullest each moment of the time remaining. The inevitable buffeting assures it will be a wild and exhilarating ride, if we have the guts and the wisdom to truly live it, experiencing it to the hilt, and do not keep escaping into a million kinds of mental and emotional diversions from what is actually going on.

The jet liner of the dream may be a spiritual plane. I might be seeking to go too fast through various unsettling aspects of my Alanon Step 11 work having to do with a closer connection with the spiritual. Perhaps the dream is simply about emotional ups and downs on a journey via this spiritual plane. Lately I have been feeling frustration as I go through a kind of "dry period," first having felt bouyed up at the prospect of spiritual growth but now downcast and frustrated that I have no sense of personal engagement with a higher power or with spirituality in general.]

5/14/11 - Title: "Almost, But Not Quite, Loving the One I'm With"

I have been on an exciting date with a large woman, a bigger lady than I usually go for, a well-rounded or curvaceous young lady, with plenty of her to hold onto. It has been a fun date for both of us, doing lots of entertaining things. Since we are so into each other, anything we do together is quite pleasant. We can obviously tell we are attracted to one another.

Back at her place, we embrace outside her door and kiss each other passionately. (Her door seems to be on the second floor, accessible via several concrete steps and a porch. I hope she will invite me in, and we can make love.)

However, either she tells me, or I already know that it is not to be this time. Her husband, who had been away, is due back quite soon. I get ready to leave. At least she knows I want her. Maybe we can make love another day.

[So, the ego and his "well-rounded" anima have a thing for each other. This suggests good, though not complete integration. However, they are both violating the trust of my implied shadow in this dream, her husband. So, there may be some type of "love triangle," a divided loyalty situation. I do not know either the woman or her husband in real life, so this likely does not have to do with an external reality parallel.

The "concrete steps" resonate for me as having to do with the Alanon 12-Step program, which I think of as being generally practical and easy to understand and follow, if one conscientiously tries to do so. This may be about my progress on the steps, almost finished with them, which if I had completed them might correspond with my anima and I actually making love, but, since I have not, only gets us as far as her front door.

That the date anima is well-rounded suggests she is there to show the ego (me) the example of having well-rounded qualities himself.

I suspect the "date" is a pun of some type, but as yet am not understanding it. This is not very romantic, but maybe it has to do with all the helpful "data" at one's disposal in Alanon.

The idea that my anima has lots for me "to hold onto" reminds me of the Alanon program too. It has many tools. There is, in a sense, plenty to hold onto or to rely upon when one needs its resources.

I wonder if the "love triangle" or divided loyalty split of some type may have to do with wanting to continue with things more or less as they are vs. to really "go all the way" in devotion to the Alanon program and, specifically, to completing my current, spiritual step, number 11. If so, perhaps this is a preliminary phase. I can at my own pace keep doing what I need to in order to finish Step 11, and see what happens.

In any case, that her door is on the second floor suggests dawning awareness of the issues involved.]

5/15/11 - Title: "Almost Thanksgiving"

Fran and I are in some big building, a great bay of a place, with much open space, as in a church, temple, airplane hanger, VFW hall, or warehouse. Most of the time, though, in the dream it is just the two of us here. Conditions are fairly dark inside, bright outside. There is a sense of tables, long narrow ones in rows, as for a church social or some other kind of eating meeting to take place in this great hall (not a hall like one uses for walking from one place to another, but a meeting hall).

Fran and I do not have many resources between us, but we understand that we must make do with what little we have. (Also, our roles here are in some fashion partly for tax savings.) These modest resources include four sets of leftovers on one of the long, narrow tables. There (they) are in aluminum pans and wrapped in aluminum foil, as though all four were recently removed from, or about to be taken to, a big refrigerator.

It is almost Thanksgiving. At first, I think we shall be alone for Thanksgiving. Yet then it seems we are helping with or in charge of a non-profit, in service to others, and are to feed several others and ourselves from the four containers of leftovers.

Fran is not naturally, on her own, much into the idea of the non-profit or service to or serving others, but she is willing to follow my lead on this.

I ask a tall woman who is speaking from above and who seems to be in charge, or at least who understands and explains the rules and arrangements here, and she confirms that if possible they (those responsible, men and women, for this place) expect or want us to provide the upcoming Thanksgiving meal for a number of the staff of this place, plus ourselves. I agree that we shall do this, and Frances and I begin to examine the four containers (a bit reminiscent at first of the two baskets of loaves and fishes from which Jesus fed thousands, for at first I think there is little here) to see what they hold and to figure out how we shall put the food together, prepare it, and serve it in order that it be both good and plentiful for a gathering of several, maybe ten to twelve, for the imminent Thanksgiving meal.

One of the containers is large and may have a big bird in it, probably leftovers from a cooked turkey. The other three are of food like side dishes, and I think one of them is a fruit salad. Clearly, there will be an adequate variety and sufficient (but not an abundant, wasteful) supply of food for a modest gathering, and we can prepare a good Thanksgiving meal for everyone who will be here then.

[Aluminum suggests a luminance, a spiritual connotation, as do the idea of a great temple or church and an imminent time of Thanksgiving. 4 suggests the seasons of the year and manifestation in reality, 3-transformation, 10-progress and success, 12-Jesus' disciples, the months of the year, or the great gone and the little come, an unfavorable time (I Ching). 4X3 also is 12, as is 2 (dawning awareness) X 6 (flexibility). Aluminum may also suggest Alanon.

Fran is a woman of great talent, my wife, an excellent teacher, very practical, has a good sense of humor, is well organized, is also a good musician and naturalist. At times we have relationship or "roommate" frictions, while at others we "click," complement one another, and relate very well.]

5/19/11 - Title: "A Really Close Shave"

I am shaving with an electric razor and then look closely at the mirror and see that I have shaved so close that a whole section of skin, maybe a sixth of my face and neck skin (the overall area including my face, on the neck, or under the chin where my beard naturally grows), has been removed, down to the bloody muscle tissue below. I resume shaving, to get the job done in another part of my face and neck, and, when I look closely at the end of doing that part, the same thing has happened. Eventually, I have in this way shaved down to the bloody underlying tissue of about half my face, under my chin, and on the front of my neck area.

Title: "Nip and Tuck"

It is as though I am an observer of myself. As the observer, I see myself name a dream "Nip and Tuck," a name which is also clever, a description of what the dream is about. (This is all I remember.)

[I am at this point not actually sure what "Nip and tuck" means or why that is supposedly a clever title. To nip, I assume, is to bite or to bite at slightly, as one might be nipped by a dog. And to tuck might be to hide something, as in "to tuck it under." But I am aware of it is a common enough slang expression. I shall look it up.

In writing that, I said "nick and tuck" instead, in which case "nick" is probably about snipping a little, as with a razor, knife, or scissors. This reminds of giving someone a haircut, spiritual or real (or otherwise metaphorical). A haircut for a man could be about losing face or power, as in Samson losing his power when his hair was cut. "Tuck" could be about hair styling and so about persona. Or it could be "shave and a haircut, six bits," which is also a tune or rhythm.

Later, I remember that "nip and tuck" may be a procedure connected with cosmetic or corrective facial, body mass, or breast surgery, perhaps to enhance someone's looks and/or to improve the skin's appearance following surgery for another purpose, for instance due to an accident, cancer removal, too much flab, etc.

At this point, I am not resonating with anything connected with this other than that my dermatologist yesterday (at the end of a skin check exam in which no new lesions were found) had said if I did not use certain preventative measures I might later need new nose surgery to improve a deteriorated appearance.

All I can think of otherwise in connection with these two dreams is that there may be some issue about which I am not sure I shall make it, that it will be a really close tolerance thing, like a metaphorical "close shave." I was indeed worried yesterday and today about all that remains to be done before my trip. Then, this afternoon, as if there were not enough to worry about and deal with otherwise, I learned that there apparently has been fraud in connection with one of my credit cards that I shall need on the trip, someone having run up $400 last month against our account from another city.

Just in case this may somehow be tied in again with my Alanon 12-Step program, I am now on Step 12, and I intend continuing maintenance step efforts (Steps 10, 11, 12) while on the trip, to see if I may better come to terms with this final step while on vacation or soon after my return, next month.]

5/21/11 - Title: "A Hopeful Report on My Kid Disease"

I am in a male doctor's office. This is my second visit (and I seem to recall a similar dream - the first visit - several months ago, but later realize that is part of the dream too). I have had various tests, and now the doctor is telling me the results. He says my kidney disease is terminal but that at this time I do not need dialysis. He says, however, it cannot be cured. If I follow his advice and take care of myself, I may still live several more years.

[When I "woke up," I was worried about the doctor's news and remembered I had seen him before. I am surprised I had "forgotten" that I am dying of kidney disease. It is both worrisome and depressing. Then I woke up "completely" and "remembered" having earlier had a dream - which I probably have just dreamed now - that "occurred" (?) several months ago - in which I was told I have a terminal kidney disease. (In fact, per my dream journal, there was not such a prior dream.)

  • The double-dream (whether I really had the first one months ago or just "remembered" that I had in this dream) suggests emphasis on the dream's message as well as dawning awareness of the dream issue(s).

  • I am currently working on Steps 10, 11, and 12 in the Alanon 12-step Program, and, as with other recent dreaming, this likely is partly about that.

  • The kidneys are about removing waste products or other impurities from the blood stream via the urine. So, suppose they are my ways of dealing with anger or other "negative" emotions that are part of my passion. The ego has now twice been informed he has a disabling, indeed a mortal dysfunction (dis-function, i.e. having to do with a tendency to disrespect himself, situations, or others) through feeling or even expressing a lot of anger, frustration, resentment, depression, etc. This can be better dealt with.

  • Just in case there is also some external reality basis for the dream(s), I shall also seek to get more rest, drink more water, get good exercise, and eat plenty of fruits and veggies.

  • The dream (since it is about the clearing up of the urine) is likely also about how I express my passion, feelings, etc., which evidently is an "act" that needs to be cleaned up.

  • My shadow in the dream is a doctor and might be a version of my HP. "Doctor" could also be a pun, for instance "docked her," though that one does not seem to apply.

  • He is a healer and apparently also is caring, competent, and highly knowledgeable.

  • That the disabling condition is eventually terminal likely has at least two implications: 1. It is the ego which is to die, not necessarily the whole living self; 2. The ego has already made enough changes (as through the Alanon program) that, although the ego typically may have to be replaced (and so "die") every few weeks or months while one is in a healthy growth program, in this case, by taking care of myself (caring for myself) I can expect to continue with the current more adaptive ego for several more years.

  • Thus, it is a cautionary dream but may also be an upbeat, positive one.

  • "Kidney" could be a pun. For instance, maybe it is "kid-nee" disease, an insufficiency in the birth of my kid category. Or it could be sort for my kid need department, about my kid needs or needs for a kid category. Or simply about the needs or qualities of my own inner child.

  • The word "disease" may also be a pun, i.e. suggesting "dis-ease" or lack of ease or a too easy falling into the trap of "dissing" or judging critically myself and others. That this is in conjunction with kid-ney may refer to my being uncomfortable around kids or unsure of my ability or worth in relation to kids, the "kids" within me as well as kids in my external reality.

  • The dream may refer to a problem with verbal expression (since the excretory product of kidney function is urine which typically in dreams is a metaphor for expressing oneself in words).

  • It may also suggest a need for better self-care, not just physically but emotionally, i.e. giving myself positive strokes and feedback, more "candy" moments in life, more quality time and experiences.

  • I might think about what life would be like if my inner "kid" had been nurtured and encouraged to grow up in a healthy way, then assure, now that I have a choice to shape life more that way, that this inner child has a supportive setting and a rich experiential life.

  • It may be that, counter-intuitively, it is actually best that I not follow a doctor's advice for how to preserve the life of this ego for several more years, that the main message with respect to my "I" self is instead that its disability is so serious it is terminal, and so it is time to let the ego go, and good riddance.

  • There is implicit in the two visits to see the doctor (a kind of dream within a dream) a call to "wake up!"

  • The Alanon 12-step program, which I was completing when I had this dream, does not give advice that as yet readily resonates for me. On the one hand, this could mean a need for more practice, till it becomes second nature. On the other, it could mean that some other venue, i.e. meditation practice or other (?), will be more meaningful for me over the long-term.

  • Taking today's other dreams within the group as having lessons relevant to my dream or the hologram of my overall situation, a key take-away may be to allow myself to richly enjoy whatever life, moment to moment, has to offer.

  • Another could be to trade in this ego for another and then develop a strong sense of self with the new, more encompassing one, presumably one more easygoing, laid-back.

  • Also, to show others genuine interest which, as in How to Win Friends and Influence People, naturally leads to others opening all doors to one.

  • It is important to absorb life, to soak it up, luxuriate in it, not being influenced by others' disapproval or negativity.]

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