fortunately, in this game i was playing one of the murderers, rather than a potential victim. my four brothers and i were pretending to be criminals on the loose. everyone but us was asleep, so we were free to make up the rules as we wished.
something went wrong. in the dark, we couldn't always identify each other. not realizing this, we accidentally killed one of our own team. one of the five Micu brothers.
i don't mean to say that we pretend-killed him. we actually killed him. there was some blood, i think, and when we discovered what we had done, i wept violently. i choked and sobbed and wailed until i woke Father.
i could see only his lower half, because i was young, and on my knees. because i could not see his face, i had to imagine how he felt rather than experiencing it. so i imagined horror, and felt it. i felt excruciating sadness, like glass shards digging into my skin from head to toe. i felt shame at the idea that i could even play such a malicious, foolish game, let alone hurt so many loved ones.
but most of all i felt guilt. it was such that i could not rise from the floor.
~ ~ ~
when i woke, i lay stunned for awhile. "where did a nightmare like that come from?!" but it hadn't felt like a nightmare. no fever, nothing weird to eat or drink before bed, nothing to explain--
"wait." as it is designed to do, my right hemisphere started throwing ideas together intuitively. no, i take that back; it must have drawn connecting lines already, because it had dreamed as a result. it had taken three real-life experiences and found their worst common denominator, and had then built a dream experience to express how it felt. it presented its findings to me:
1) i went to see "the Wolverine" in the theater on Friday, which was opening night, and went to see it again yesterday with my immediate family. it was intense and entertaining both times, and i really wouldn't mind seeing it on the big screen again if there were a financially responsible way to do so. when i enjoy something that much, and when i enjoy it more than once, it tends to leave a deep impression, of which i am only partially consciously aware.
in this movie, Logan is wracked by nightmares-- by guilt. previously, he had slain his former lover. this was out of necessity, because she had been destroying everything and everyone around her at the time, but her ghost still haunted him in his sleep every night. and he would wake with claws ready, sweat-drenched, heart pounding. and he would seek death every waking moment, because he didn't want to live with that torture anymore. unfortunately he couldn't die, because of his genetic mutation.
2) while i was in the theater yesterday, my brother Jesse came home from 3 weeks' volunteer service at a summer camp. when we came home from the movie, we celebrated his return with delicious food and drink, and then decided to watch Inception together.
in this film, main character Mr. Cobb leads a dream team (TFL) of well-intentioned lawbreakers through a treacherous mindscape on a quest to destroy a real-world industrial empire... but only so that he can be reunited with his son & daughter. this by itself is enough to interest me in the movie (which i had seen before). but wait, there's more!
Cobb is a liability to the very team he has hired, because his inability to let go of his past turns his own subconscious against him & his friends. it takes the form of his dead wife, Mal (please look elsewhere in the movie for subtlety). in waking life and in the dream, Cobb feels responsible for her death. he spends most of the movie trying to avoid a confrontation with her, yet clinging desperately to her memory.
in a way, he is responsible for her dying; but more important is the fact that he does eventually confront her (i.e. his guilt and his hold on the past) directly. the result of the confrontation is left somewhat open to interpretation.
~ ~ ~
i spoke with Randy a few weeks ago, and with Pastor just yesterday morning, about moving past guilt-- not just into redemption, but unto a full confidence of that redemption. and the painful truth is that even though i believe myself healthier than i've ever been, i still need help.
i need your help. i asked for extrospection not only to give trusted others a chance to reveal some flaw that might be hidden from me, but also (somewhat grudgingly) to open myself to encouragement in the form of affirmation. who i know myself to be, who i am, and the person i feel i am are three distinct things! i am disconcerted by this. i would rather they be in glorious, harmonious concert. two out of three might be attainable.
i am entrusting myself to you in large quantities. not first to you (i would have liked to end the dream with a look at Father's face), but to you all the same. your words [of affirmation] can be more than words. i will train myself not to turn them away when they are positive, because apparently i must be nourished if i'm to continue toward health.
next chapter: music and fellow sheep and a dogged pursuit of my dream to breathe a cleaner air (some would say the world's cleanest).