Broken Down

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The nightmares are starting again. I go through these phases when the little spark of fear lights itself underneath all my senses. Usually if I stay away from the news they go away, but with social media shoving headlines down my throat, sometimes it is hard to escape.

Just this week, two 18 year old boys my daughter has attended school with have been arrested. One for murder and the other rape. The calm mother inside of me tries to assure me everything will be alright but the panicked mother is feeling the fear. I felt safe at school while I was growing up. Sure, bad things happened. There were drugs and accidents and even suicides but rape and murder? Growing up in a small town, someone was always watching. Everyone knew everyone else and if my parents weren’t watching me, you can bet someone else’s parents were. I didn’t have to deal with the severity of what these teens do today. It’s hard as a parent to push the worry aside and pretend a normal day at school is still a normal day at school.

I think about the parents of these two boys. How must they feel knowing their children are in jail? Geez, they are 18 and considered an adult but to me they are still babies trying their best to grow up. This should be an exciting year. The end of their high school chapter and the beginning of who they might have been. I think about the parents of the girls. One girl dead and the other girls emotionally and physically raped. Those parents must lie awake too. My heart hurts for all of them and for our kids too. It hurts for our communities and our world as a whole. Poor impulse control, lack of supervision and a surprising lack of fear toward authorities and consequences. I’ve sat quietly by and watched the transformation. I’ve watched schools protect the wrong kids and not follow through on consequences others really needed. I’ve watched kids become apathetic when it comes to their behavior and reputation because they are so hell bent on living in the moment with little regard or thought for the future. YOLO, isn’t that the theme they live by? I watch parents paying less and less attention because they are struggling in their own bad relationships or just too busy with the demands of their job. What can I possible do? I can’t carry the burden and I cannot change what the world has become. What I can do is make sure that I communicate with my kids. Make sure they can come to me about anything going on knowing I will always be here trying to protect them. This is one of the reasons it is so important to me that home be a soft place to fall. I’m passionate about home being a place they feel loved and safe and protected for a little while each and every day. I pray I am doing all I can to help them through these difficult years and to help them make sense of the chaos around them.

I hope the nightmares stop but deep down I know the truth. When I wake up they are still there and are very much true. They aren’t nightmares at all but the reality of everyday life and I admit, my feathers are ruffled.

Nightmare On my Street

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Coming to you straight out of Dream Moods Dictionary:

Scream

To dream that you are screaming symbolizes anger and fear. You are expressing some powerful emotion which you have kept pent up inside. If you try to scream, but no sound comes out, then it indicates your sense of helplessness and frustration in some situation. No matter how hard you try to get someone’s attention, they cannot hear you. The dream highlights your difficulty in communicating with this person. You need to immediately identify your fears or feelings and confront this situation in real life. Alternatively, your inability to scream may be a form of REM paralysis.

Okay, so I posted recently that I have been having nightmares. Last night was no exception. This one was different in a very distinct way. For years, I have tried to cry out for help in my dreams. For years, I have opened my mouth and made several attempts to squeak out the tiniest hint of noise. There I was standing there paralyzed in fear helpless because I had no voice.

I am happy to report that after 42 years of living I have finally found my scream. It woke me up and the sound of it scared my waking self half to death but as soon as I realized what had happened I could not stop laughing. Why did I find it humorous? I have no idea but I think it because I have overcome some type of obstacle. I have moved to the next level of conquering whatever it is I have been trying to battle. And the truth? I woke up feeling really, really good today. I feel stronger and happy and hopeful. I am that warrior at the end of the day who recognizes the power he holds in his sword. And, yes, I am a little crazy so we will have to allow that in the mix too.

Maybe there really is some truth to this silly dream dictionary. Maybe I really do feel better because whatever I have been holding quietly inside has found a direct tunnel out. Maybe my scream was a symbol of emotional release or that I am finally feeling like I have a grip on things and the power I need to muddle through exists right there inside of me.

Bizarre post I know, but one I was excited to share. Have you ever tried to scream in a dream? If so, did you have a voice?

The Truth Comes Out at Night

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This is the third night in a row I guess you could say I’ve been having nightmares. The first two nights were about snakes and last night I was crying so hard I woke myself up.

It makes me realize how deep we bury some of life’s messes we carry. We stick them in a deep place so that we can forget and go on with trying to live a happy life. The truth though, is they are still there affecting us every day whether we are aware of it or not.

Maybe dreams are a safe way to deal with the monsters who continually chase us long after we think we’ve grown up enough to make them disappear. It amazes me how the fear and the pain feel more real while we sleep than we allow it to be felt while we are awake.

The lesson is this. I have to rid myself of these monsters once and for all. I have to make sure that when I do dream about them they are just small, little creatures who do not hold the power over me that they do right now. So, how do I make them shrink? How do I face them head on and let them know they cannot control me any longer?

The snakes in my dream never attack me. In fact, I guess you could say they don’t even bite me. They just stare at me with piercing eyes and slowly slither around me, squeezing me and reminding me they have a tight hold on all I do. One day I will wiggle myself free, but for now, I will try and take back my control, one day at a time, before that snake gains enough strength to squeeze all the life right out of me. Me or monsters? Who will win?