June 9, 2013
It begins with a ballet. I’m observing a reunion performance between two great dancers, one male, one female. They are performing on stage. A voice is describing what is happening. Then, as though from distant balcony seats, I watch as the heroine falls, or is thrown by her partner, off the stage, descending parallel to a sheer wall of some gray-blue iridescent material evocative of subterranean stone. Her partner dives after her, and as they meet in mid air, a male voice explains, in a clear firm voice, it is not actually happening because “This is a dream.” Next thing I know, I’m sitting with Mami at what looks and feels like a very fine mahogany bar, but the dimly lit space is my rec room. The bar runs along the wall my dream door is in. We’re studying the album cover of the ballet and I’m informing her the male dancer was Rudolf Nureyev dancing with his long time partner Margot Fontayne. As I talk, I become aware of a man standing a few feet away beside the open rec room door. I focus on him, he’s really there, and instantly become lucid when I recognize my father. The joyful cry, “Papi!” wells up in my throat but is oddly constricted; I can’t seem to speak. But he’s so close and so absolutely present! Somehow, I find my voice and say urgently, “Papi!” He turns his head and looks at me, and I know full well that he sees me. “Es Maribel!” I’m lucid and feel we could actually have a conversation! But he looks away, jutting out his lower lip in a characteristic gesture he sometimes made when there was something he wanted to say but couldn’t find the words, or felt it was not the right time or situation to say it in. I feel myself losing the dream.
Now begin a series of intense, vivid and urgent False Awakenings. I can barely keep track of them and their order. But first, after the ballet dream, I had a brief yet important lucid I really don’t want to forget, I want to write both dreams down to make sure I remember them. At one point, I was in a small basement bedroom that is not part of my present home. The walls and floor look new and fashioned of a somewhat cheap-feeling linoleum designed to look like polished blonde wood.
I’m lying in bed, just awoken from my lucid dreams, when my husband barges in. I can see right away he wants to have some sexual fun because he’s holding a bottle of wine and two glasses and he has a determined, almost grimly smiling look on his face. I’m really confused. “But it’s 4:00 in the morning,” I protest. “You can’t start drinking wine in the middle of the night.” He looks drunk already and spills some white zinfandel at the foot of the bed as he stumbles, but soberly acknowledges that I have a point as he packs up and leaves. (In reality, we both hate white zinfandel.) I call after him, “But you can’t go! Now that you’ve been here, I’ll miss you and be scared all alone down here.” But he’s gone, and the most important thing is to write my dreams down. I believe I’m doing just that on a small notepad, but suddenly I wake up in the dream (false awakenings nestled within each other like Chinese boxes) and discover I’ve scrawled barely visible or legible sentences across a dark-brown pillow resting on my lap.
Now I’m watching a video on my iPod of me and my brother talking together in a private library, facing each other where we stand on one side of a long wooden table. It’s a very nice room. In waking reality, I use my iPod to record my dreams.
As I watch the film it dawns on me that I somehow managed to record one of my dreams! Or somehow the dream recorded itself. I’m thrilled beyond belief. It’s clearly a dream, and I seem to witness the moment we both become lucid, at which point a powerful wind begins blowing through the room, ruffling the pages of some of the books and maybe some loose papers on the shelves. The wind feels like a manifestation of our elation.
I find myself lucidly walking back down to that basement bedroom. (Although it doesn’t look like it per se, its place as part of the basement harkens back to childhood and the room Papi built for my brother down in the rec room, essentially using up a chunk of the basement.) I follow a pyramid-like staircase down. The space is dark and unfamiliar and almost annoying in its ordinariness. I walk in and command, “Let there be light!” impatiently stomping my foot on the floor. Nothing happens. “What?” I demand, exasperated. “Do I have to turn on a lamp just like in real life even though it won’t even work?” I illustrate my point by striding over to the dresser on my left and switching on a tall slender lamp that does, indeed, remain dark. Fed up, I walk straight toward the far end of the room and escape it, I don’t remember how, I just go!
Oh yes! I’m flying about a quarter of the mile off the ground through the dusky night. Below me, I distinctly make out a wide creek or a shallow river bed. I see the water flowing over the rocks. There’s color in the darkness and I clearly see the muted golds and reds of some of the smooth smallish rocks. Very deliberately, I drop the wine bottle and wine glass I’m holding. Down, down they go as I wait to hear the sound of their impact. I’m immensely gratified when I distinctly hear the splash of water and the clink of glass hitting stone. Then one of my intents enters my mind and I really feel that tonight I can actually make it up to the moon. Up and up I go, and when a roof materializes above me, I refuse to acknowledge it and keep flying even as more identical roofs appear above me in layers, but I pass through them as though they are insubstantial clouds, making it up to what I somehow know is clear, unobstructed space. And there it is, the New Moon, a black sphere just barely discernible through a misty bank of clouds. I then become aware of a group of people gathered below me who are also looking at the moon.
I immediately fly down and spread myself on my back at the feet of the front row of lunar spectators, quickly removing my clothing, piece by piece. Now I’m naked and everyone else is demurely clad in pajamas. I say, “What?” as they all look at me almost like people in waking reality might react. “It’s a moon celebration, isn’t it?” meaning a sensual rite is in order and I’m the willing “sacrifice”. The front row, about six or eight chairs, is dominated by men. The chairs have that cheap wood institutional feel, the kind you find in nursing homes and hospital bedrooms. There are two dark-haired, handsome and likely candidates seated side-by-side. One grins at me, the other one looks at me with a more shy interest. I focus on him even though his very nice blue pajama suit is spotted here and there with little white strips of some encrusted material. He joins me on the ground, lying on top of me. We embrace, and prepare to kiss, but instead just look at each other a bit awkwardly. It doesn’t feel right, and I’m just a little disgusted by the stains on his pajama, which look suspiciously like dried snot. We both feel this isn’t working and get up. The men in the front row are all in the prime of their life, and yet they seem as passive as extremely old men. I still want to get to the moon, and back up in the sky, I intend to close my eyes (risking waking up) so that when I open them again I will be on the moon’s surface. I try this twice, but it doesn’t work.
A final false awakening. I’m in a dark room by myself talking to my brother and my mother on the phone at the same time. Mami is talking and talking and distracting me as I try to write my dreams down and remember that second one (which of course I have completely forgotten) when suddenly I hear Mario say in a voice thick with shock, awe and emotion, “Papi!” He quickly hangs up the phone. My heart swells with excitement as I realize Papi has gone to visit him, and that it’s about me, and how I saw him earlier in the evening, because he wants Mario to be aware of it all. I really want to call Mario right then and there to make sure it really happened, but if it didn’t, I’ll end up waking him in the middle of the night. I finally wake for real a little after 4:30. (I fell back to sleep a little before 3:30.)
Dream Notes: Before bed, lay awake working through some anxiety and sadness. I thought of the last time I saw Abuela sitting in a nursing home and of how when I kissed her goodbye from deep within her unfocused self rose the words, “Hasta luego, mi amor.” (“Good bye, my love.”) Then I remembered her dead body in the hospital and her open mouth that looked so much like the painting “The Scream”. I thought of Mario and our differing views and ways of being.
It is so important that I became lucid, and for a very long time, back in my lucid dreaming room after making the decision to obey my “Major Professor” Guide and not do Galantamine. I’ve lost count, I think it’s 7 out of 9 times I’ve become lucid there since I began using that room, but since then I’ve had two lucid dreams in my bedroom where I found myself in the rec room, so that’s effectively 10 out of 10 for the space itself. As my dream partner James pointed out, I associate it with lucidity now.
When we visit an older person whose mind is “gone” we see only the shell of their physical self with its autonomic reactions and needs. Whatever they’re seeing and experiencing in Mind Space is invisible to us. Last night I feel as though I entered the Mind Space of some such individuals with front row seats to the mysterious beauty and power of the New Moon—the death of the old and the birth of a new phase and yet neither one, a timeless space. Fascinating how physical decrepitude was so delicately hinted at by the lovely white excretions on his fine blue pajamas I had to mentally associate with dried snot because they looked more like fragments of ocean coral. He, and others like him, were sitting beneath the New Moon in their dreams while their bodies lay in nursing homes or hospital bedrooms?
My husband having brought a bottle of white zinfandel into the room is a major red flag, because he would never drink that wine. Message—Don’t make the mistake of pretending to know exactly what someone else is thinking, because that route leads, more often than not, to underestimating them by filtering their Being through the prejudices of your own ego. The only way to relate to people, especially those you love, is as Being to Being, respecting each others path and responding to what they actually do and say, not to what you think they’re thinking.
In the library, my brother and I were on the same side of the great table even though in our discussions we may appear to be on opposite sides. He has always played a part in my dreams, but ever since he had his first real lucid dream recently, he is ever more present. The wind that blew through the library, so invigorating—the joy that gusts through you when you realize you’re dreaming—I want very much for him to experience, so that hopefully in the future he can join me sometimes in Mind Space. The fact that I found myself in a room very reminiscent of his childhood bedroom, where I sometimes spent the night on the bottom bunk, reflects this desire of mine, and perhaps also perhaps how I feel we’re recovering some of the closeness we once shared.
The theme of dancing has appeared recently in James’ dreams. My first lucid was about two great, legendary dancers from two different countries (interestingly the man was a Russian who claimed political asylum while on tour to free himself from the oppressive regime) who came together on stage and wowed audiences with their performance for years, if not decades. When the male dancer tossed his partner off the stage and dove after her, it reflects the plunge of leaving the physical stage and going out of body, where falling/flying is exhilarating instead of dangerous or fatal. The fact that he reached her and caught her I would like to see as a sign that James and I will have that complete mutual lucid dream one night, against seemingly impossible odds. This hopeful interpretation is strengthened by Papi’s appearance as I showed Mami the album cover of the performance. He was absolutely present, I saw and felt him as I did in waking reality whenever he walked into a room, and at the end of the night, he seems to have let me know he was visiting Mario in his dreams, whether or not my brother remembers. He is helping both of us. Mami is, of course, the womb Mario and I both entered physical incarnation through, the proverbial Goddess, whose nature is both material and spiritual, the conduit of Divine energy-creativity.