I really wish I had written last night’s dream down as soon as I woke up this morning, which is what you’re supposed to do if you actually give a fuck about what your dreams might mean. But I didn’t, so we’ll have to go with what I can remember now, 12 hours later.
I went to a production of the Rocky Horror cast that I used to be in, to see one of my coworkers from Seattle perform for the first time. She was going to be playing a role that I’d done quite a few times myself, and so the cast asked me to act in the character’s first scene. I protested that I remember next-to-nothing, and that I didn’t have any costume stuff with me, but they told me I’d do just fine in the jean shorts and teal bra I was wearing.
Those details are irrelevant, but they set the stage for how bizarre all this was. I mean, what was my Seattle coworker doing in San Diego? Why would the cast ask me to perform, after all these years, with zero preparedness? Why was I wearing shorts at midnight in January?
It gets weirder.
I went and stood at the back of the theater, which is where I usually hang out so I can talk to the most people as they enter/exit/stand in the lobby. And then I saw my ex-husband, sitting by himself a few rows up from the back. I decided to go talk to him.
I don’t remember what was said, but I know I was trying to be civil, and that he was riding a pretty high horse. He had his tongue pierced, claiming that he needed it to play his part in the show. I called him out on the fact that he wouldn’t even watch the movie with me while we were together, since he wanted to erase any part of my history that had me half-naked or gave me a sexual identity – and now he was in the show?!
He shrugged, gave me a scornful look, and walked up to the front of the theater. I noticed how awkward he was: this tall, skinny, ginger dude, with a tongue ring and a leather jacket, trying to look hard. I followed him, intent on continuing to argue – he always was the type to leave the room or give me the silent treatment when we fought.
I approached him where he was sitting in the middle of a group of friends, and tapped him on the shoulder. No longer silent, he turned on me with a poison tongue, repeating back everything I’d done to wrong him throughout the course of our relationship – especially the stuff at the end, the stuff that’s been plaguing me lately. I couldn’t think of anything to fight back with, couldn’t articulate how trapped he’d made me feel in our relationship, couldn’t point out that he’d gotten a new girlfriend immediately after we split and was engaged again less than two years later.
So instead, I started hitting him. And, like in all dreams where I physically fight someone, my arms felt weak and heavy. I couldn’t hit nearly hard enough to do any damage, but he cowered anyway.
“And give me back my goddamn Friends DVDs!” I screamed between blows.
No one around us – not audience, nor cast, nor theater security – seemed to notice what was going on. Actually, it was more like they willfully ignored it; I got the impression that they were all on my side, encouraging the beating through their non-involvement.
Then I woke up.
What is this week – my life flashing before my eyes in a strange, subconscious montage? First the dream that reminded me about my and Squeak’s plan to procreate, and now this? Here’s a hopeful interpretation:
- I was in a setting which I did not leave on the best of terms, and yet the people there wanted me there, as more than just an observer: Time passes and we remember the good things more than the bad; we are able to forgive.
- My ex-husband was out of character: Everyone that met him always remarked on what a nice guy he was; only I saw the darker side. So when I would complain about his jealousy and possessiveness, I always got the sense that people thought I was over-reacting, or that I must be the one in the wrong.
- I couldn’t think of any good arguments, and when I tried to fight him, I couldn’t hit him hard enough: There is no fight to win; the relationship is over, and it’s not worth the mental energy I expend on it day after day.
- The people around us, most of whom were ex-friends of mine, seemed to side with me: Again, time lends itself to forgiveness. If these people – once friends, now virtually strangers – were on my side, isn’t it about time I start taking my side, too?
- I demanded my Friends DVDs back: I want my fucking Friends DVDs back. Duh.
I’m open to any other interpretations of this.