September, 2016


9/1/16 - Title: "Not My Place - Not My Business"

It is night. I'm in a dark place, a residence, not my own. I'm in one room, Dad and Mom in another. We are guests in this place, a commercial establishment maybe, or possibly the residence of someone(s) we know who live(s) out of our town, and whom we're visiting.

Dad had needed to get up earlier, maybe to go pee. There was some kind of commotion or noise about it or from it. He needed to have things a certain way, that he was used to, and it was not set up that way, so he could not sleep and also could not move around easily while having insomnia to deal with it. He insisted things be more the way he needed them. Later, I get up with my own peeing and sleeplessness issues. I go to a refrigerator that's out in a patio-like area or a screen room, except the windows are all closed now (winter?). The door to the fridge is standing open. In fact, it is propped open, evidently an adjustment Dad had made, so he can more easily and quietly access the food and drink in there. I want to close the fridge door. Can it still work with the door open like that? But the door is wedged open, and who knows what disturbance will happen if I move what's keeping it open and close the fridge? There are some bottles of beer getting warm in the fridge door shelves. I'd like a cool drink or a food snack, but the warming beer does not appeal to me. I leave things alone and head back to my bed. We'll have to sort this out in the morning.

[Of Dad, I'd say he was abusive, fairly smart, though plodding. He did mellow quite a bit as he got older, especially once he became a grandfather relating with his grandkids. Mom was and is argumentative, intrusive, depressed, but also curious and literate for someone with no college credits. She is energetic, creative, often sees herself as both inferior and victimized, and yet is engaged socially and through her hobbies. She too mellowed as she grew older, but she became dependent a number of years ago on alcohol as a way of dealing with emotional pain.

The dream apparently has to do with the negative and positive sides of myself as depicted by my anima (Mom) and my shadow self (Dad). It also may reflect a general context that is not so good: "in a dark place" that does not feel like my own and has few rooms, thus a sense of few options for growth or enrichment. On the other hand, it's a positive thing that where I am is not my usual residence: normally I'm not in a dark or strange "place" but more balanced between up and down moods.

Yet it is also about self-expression (both Dad and I peeing or needing to). Maybe there's something I can get off my chest, for instance by talking with my sponsor, discussing it with Fran, or writing in a journal. There is an issue or concern that things are not as familiar, needing to make an unwanted adjustment and objecting to this ("some kind of commotion or noise" about it). An open fridge, like Mom's drinking, may be a way to cool things down emotionally, perhaps the better to deal with whatever has been bugging me or my shadow self energy (hence the insomnia both the shadow and the ego are experiencing). It may be positive that I avoid the temptation of either food or an alcoholic drink to better deal with things and instead plan to work them out once hopefully better rested and so with more reliable judgment.

The title to the dream came to me intuitively right away and suggests a big part of the issues are about relating to other people and what I might do or say about or to them, for instance my sponsee, my mom, my brother ( Pete), or my walking buddy, whom I'd perceived as having been rude recently. Alanon principles teach that the focus is more efficiently and helpfully kept on myself, that trying to change or "fix" others is neither my place nor my business.

The screen room, with windows all closed, may be about seeing the picture or "getting it, " i.e. awareness of the issues, where things are shown to an observer if he or she is open to understanding them. With the windows closed, however, gaining much insight seems unlikely.]

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