Monday, December 30, 2013

Time to Get Rid of Tired Old Ideas

The Dream:
My uncle S is a very old, decrepit man. He walks bent over and is housebound, yet his spirit is domineering, his voice is strong, and he's calling the shots. My daughter, about 5 years old, needs a home and I've “placed” her with him. She comes to me saying he's kicked her out; he has someone older, an adolescent girl who can do chores. I wonder if he has a dirty old man's interest in an attractive teenager.

I realize I need to find a new home for my child, but resent this intrusion into my work-a-day world. I have so many projects—now this! But I soon realize what my true priority should be: taking care of my child.

Interpretation: This uncle represents the stern, unattractive  side of my animus, my own internalized patriarch. Forty years of feminism have weakened him, but his voice remains strong, and he has made no place for the feminine except as a convenience (a doer of chores) or a sex object. Of course I'm everything in my dream, so neither have I! At first I am too preoccupied by the busyness of contemporary life to pay much attention, but the dream tells me that this should be a priority. I need to care for the vulnerable (young child) part of myself, my inner femininity, and the first step will be to stand up to my own faulty conceptions of masculinity and femininity.


Emily said...

As I've been waiting for the next post (!) I thought more about this particular dream. As always, I asked myself "Why Uncle and not Father or Brother?". So, I realized there are several idioms involving Uncle, and one is that we "Cry Uncle" when we have had enough of something. So, in my dream, the too much of what I've been doing are "chores" because that's what he is most focused on. My other daughter, the five year old, is what I need to focus on more. Not the chores, which is "doubled" in this dream - by crying "Uncle" and by myself admitting I have so many projects. So perhaps I need to discern which of these projects I've had enough of, and which I need to give more attention to. Is there something about my younger daughter that my dream is pointing me to look at for the answer?

Carla Young said...

That's a great comment, Emily, and very much to the point. Too many chores!!! A more recent dream has pointed out to me that I am the only one who can help myself, and I'm sure it meant that this focus on chores is a self-imposed torture. Time to let the playful 5 year old come to the rescue.

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