Sunday, July 3, 2011

Guest Dreamer: Goodbye Kiss

Our guest dreamer today is Hunky, whose father recently died.  She has asked me to interpret her dream. An important part of dream interpretation is that the dreamer is the final authority on the meaning of her dream. When I comment about her—or anyone’s—dream I am inevitably talking about what the dream would mean to me had I dreamt it. So I’ll discuss Hunky’s dream as if it were my dream.

The Dream: Dad lies on his bed, dead.  He is small and thin, half the size he used to be.  His skin stretches tightly over his forehead and cheekbones.  His gray hair is still course and thick.  His head tilts slightly backward and his mouth is wide open.

My brother Tom stands next to the bed and looks down at his father.  He goes to a faucet and turns it on.  He fills his mouth with water, swishes, then spits it out.  He fills his mouth again and walks back to Dad.  He leans down and puts his mouth on Dad’s mouth.  Tom is using his tongue to clean his father’s mouth.  He is thoroughly swabbing all surfaces of the inside of Dad’s mouth.  Then Tom sucks the foul water back into his own mouth, turns his back and spits it out.

Carla’s projection: In his lifetime my father was a difficult person. Now that he is gone I am reassessing the man who loomed so large in my psyche, and I see him differently. (He’s now half the size he used to be.) His death is not only literal, but also symbolic as his role in my life diminishes.

My brother Tom is an animus figure in this dream; in other words, he is the strong, active part of me. It is significant that I (in the guise of my brother) am the one that turns on the faucet, which represents the flow of emotions now under my control. As I take the water into my mouth I experience the full range of my feelings—love, hate, grief, release—I swish these all around and then I spit them out, signaling that I’m done with these.

Next I (through Tom) work to purify my father.  By cleaning father's mouth I wish to cleanse him of the words, actions, and non-actions that had caused much pain.  I cleanse him, and--like the Buddhists who breathe in evil and breathe out love and peace--I transform my father by taking his failings into my own mouth and spitting them out.  As I transform my father I transform myself: he becomes the father I want, I become the woman I want to be. I am free.

Hunky, the dreamer, says: Understanding my father’s severe personality disorder makes forgiveness easier.  I believe forgiveness is a part of the message.  Maybe one of these days I'll have a dream that acknowledges the positive ways he influenced me.


Hunky said...

Dear Carla,
I appreciate your projection on my dream, as if it had been your dream. I knew the dream was a powerful one, but at first I was hesitant to tell anyone about it because it seemed so weird. Your projection helps to clarify its meaning, which is very positive. Thank you!

Carla Young said...

Thanks, Hunky, for sharing this very interesting dream that explores the complex feelings we all face at the death of a parent.

Jake said...

Very brave to have shared this most revealing dream. Your courage is exemplified.

Anonymous said...

Little Ninda said... Wow, this is profound. The dream and the interputation. It made me cry. Wierd and beautiful forgiveness only love can do. Thank you for the insight, love ya

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