Remember the post, the one from a few days ago, the one I was whinging about not having any dreams. In terms of daytime dreams I am still without one. Writing a book, having a baby, or moving to Chicago have not been replaced with the desire to open a tea shop or take up Bikram yoga. However in terms of night time dreams I have had two.
Dream number one was a bit on the X-rated side. I won’t go into lurid detail. I will just tell you that Javier Bardem and I were doing things that birds and bees and educated fleas do. What felt important in this dream was the level of connection Javier and I had. And Javier’s instructions to me felt VERY important. Javier was very keen on me “opening up to him”. It seemed that he was trying to open me up so he could fill me up(metaphorically). Please, stay with the metaphor—this isn’t about sex, it’s about metaphor—really. In the dream it felt like Javier and I were very connected and I trusted him and I did open up to him. I told Igor all of these associations.
Igor, not surprisingly, had no idea who Javier Bardem is. Igor also has never heard of Sesame Street or Sex in the City. So,as usual, I had some ‘splainin to do. I told him Javier was an actor and famous and sexy and beautiful. I also told Igor that Javier wasn’t my ideal. I wouldn’t even consider him a favorite. I further tried to explain who he is by saying that he was the Spanish Brad Pitt. With that last association, Igor seemed to know who I was talking about.
Then I told Igor about another dream I’d had since last week in which my father was going to beat the shit out of me with a belt. Why? Because he had been away on vacation and I was supposed to turn the outside lights on while he was gone and I had’t and so he was going to beat me with a belt. I, having a modicum of self-protection, decided to call the cops. That was it. That was the dream.
“So those are the two versions of masculinity?”
“I guess” I answered, having no idea what these dreams were about.
“What was it like to be with Javier?” Igor asked in a completley clinical way.
“It was good” I said a bit embarrassed.
“Did it feel like it was time limited?” Igor asked.
“No, it didn’t. I felt like if I let go that it would go on forever.” I was surprised that Igor asked me something that made me aware of this timelessness of our connection.
“So what else about him?”
I searched for associations, “He’s foreign. He’s not my type. He’s dark. He’s too beautiful for me.” And then I disappeared into a silence.
“What, what happened there?”
” I just remembered that the other day when you were talking about how this one way a man reacted to me had something to do with my looks. And I was flattered and shocked by that. I was shocked that you saw me as attractive and further shocked that you thought someone else would.” I began to get mildly emotional but not so emotional that Igor seemed onto me.
Igor paused. ” You don’t think you are lovable? You don’t see yourself as beautiful?”
I couldn’t hold back the tears. “No. No, I don’t……Even Lily doesn’t love me.” I explained how differently she reacts to He-weasel, to my mother in-law and to my friends.”She likes them all better than me.”
“No, she doesn’t not love you. She is used to you. You are there all the time.”
I nodded in agreement even though on this day I wasn’t sure if he was wrong and that maybe Lily doesn’t love me.
“So,” Igor continued, “So in the dream Javier, this man—this way of being a man—that is foreign to you, this beautiful man wants to open you up to your beauty and he wants it to become a part of you. But he isn’t forcing this on you. He is inviting you to take it and you do. You opened up to beauty—to your beauty.”
Usually I feel embarrassed about sex dreams. This time I didn’t. I didn’t because it felt obvious that it was metaphor. I have no desire for Javier—not consciously.
Then we talked a little bit about my associations to the dream with my father. None of them were remarkable. Igor, after a while said the obvious, “your father sure did a number on you. I don’t mean to play the blame game. But he did. He didn’t give you a paternal introject. You have no good father that lives inside of you.”
I nodded in agreement.
Then my mind went to an image that I had on my way to Igor’s office, it was an image I had never had before. I thought that what I would really like to do is to curl up on Igor’s lap and take a nap. I wanted to do what Lily does. I just wanted to be with him in a paternal/non-verbal way. I wanted to relax on his lap like a sleeping child. I boldly, bravely and disclaimer-free shared my fantasy.
Igor answered, “It’s funny you should say that because I was just thinking how nice it would be to have you as a daughter.” That was the last word I remember him saying. I sat there on the couch. Healing was occurring, I could feel it. I also felt a tremendous sadness. And I began to cry as one would do if their therapist would say such a thing. My father didn’t want to be any-one’s father, I don’t think. He wasn’t the fathering type. But Igor, he, it turns out, would like to have me for a daughter. And it goes without saying that I would like to have Igor for a father. None of us were going to get what we want. I sat there in silence and sadness and feeling the feeling of him wishing and wanting me to be something I can’t be for him and my wishing and wanting the same. The silence lasted for what felt like forever and I thought it would never end.
When I got up to leave Igor’s office, Igor got up too. Igor threw his lumbering bear paws around me and he hugged me. He hugged me hard and tight and fiercely. “Take care of yourself, Lady,” Igor instructed. “You too,” I muzzled back into the woven wool of his sweatered shoulder. As he let go of me to let me go I let myself relax into his arms again. Igor gave me another hug. I left filled with a feeling. I left his office feeling love and feeling loved. And I tried for a moment to imagine what life would have been like if I had such a father. The thought was too big to hold onto–bigger than the hug I had just had. I pushed the thoughts away of what if and how it would have been and stayed with the feeling instead, as the feeling didn’t ask for things like evidence or anything else in the way of practicality. The feeling was enough.