Sunday, March 6, 2016

The Synthesis

When a dream character's behavior seems baffling, it's a good idea to look at the person and ask yourself what part of you they might represent. Often you'll discover they represent those parts you don't acknowledge.
The Dream: I am visiting my friend Janet. I have some children but they are in the background, not the focus of attention. Janet dislikes children, and I know it. I'm using her sink. I notice for the first time that it is a very tall pipe that drips into a bathtub. The water turns on and off via a pull chain. I am surprised to see, in her modernist apartment, that she has a bathtub in what was once a kitchen and that she now uses this space as her living room. When I see it I become nostalgic for an apartment I left long ago that had a tub in the kitchen. I notice that the center of the room has an island with gas and water hook-ups for a kitchen, exposed, with no attempt at aesthetics.

The room is airy and spacious, with a large sofa off to the side. I suggest to Janet that she make this large room back into a kitchen and use the one off to the right, the current kitchen, for her sitting room.

The children, now dogs, come running through and spit up on Janet's throw pillows. She thinks it's a big job to remove the pillow cases for laundering. I am surprised that she is making such a fuss over such a small job. I start to help her and do it quickly and easily, thinking that she has no house-wife skills. I feel superior that I do.

Interpretation: Janet, a very intellectual and independent friend, represents those parts of me. In waking life as in the dream she has no patience for the maternal. She can't manage the unpredictable, messy parts of life. With her as my proxy, I reject the instinctual (the dogs) and the not-yet-formed (children) parts of myself. In the dream I suggest she move her creative center, as symbolized by the kitchen, to a larger space, once that is both plumbed to do the job and has a comfortable place to rest (the sofa). My way to grow is to use the skills I'm so proud of in the dream to move my psychic home to a new contemporary space.

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