I woke up, wide awake, at two in the morning and I don’t know why. It was the kind of wide awake which has no conception that I had only slept a couple of hours. It was dark out, yes, but I was sure that was soon to change. Surely it was five. No… a quick look at a clock fixed that error.
I’d like to say I used my time wisely. I didn’t, as my only interest was getting back to sleep. I read a bit of Poland by James Michener, a suspect book as it was researched in the early 1980s and likely had some restrictions surrounding it. Still, my knowledge of continental European history is rather limited, so when I saw the book sitting in a pile of other books in the storage room I grabbed it.
I did fall asleep after not too long, and had a distinct peculiar dream.
I was hanging out on a corner near Old Town in Pasadena. A mountain lion came down from the north, a large brown bear came from the west. They met at the corner where I and some other indistinct people stood. They immediately began to fight, and a very even fight it was, lasting for hours, as more people watched.
They both grew weary, or at least something happened which stopped the fight. The bear fell asleep, and the lion rolled in pain. A good chunk of its right foreleg was bitten off around the knee, to the bone. Everyone seemed concerned, but kept standing around. I felt something had to be done for the lion, so I picked it up intending to take it to the veterinarian who I knew had an office on one of the smaller streets in the neighborhood.
Only I couldn’t remember exactly which one, so I carried the mountain lion (which had appropriately shrunk so I could carry it) around town, thinking if I saw the right landmarks I would remember the street.
All the while the friends around me were asking who the lion belonged to, and began efforts to try and find its owner.
I finally came to a street and saw a building which had animals all around it. The people inside were very nice and I knew that I had done the right thing in finding some help for the lion.
Well, my friends found me as I was walking back home, and with them were the owners of the lion. They asked me where it was, I told them I had taken it to the veterinarian’s office. They became angry and said I had no right to do this and told me to show them where it was.
I accepted their abuse, and still felt I did the right thing. When I got back to the office, with this whole group of people, I realized that the animals all around were actually stuffed animals and I had mistakenly left the mountain lion at a taxidermist.
Fortunately the women inside the office, the clerks of before were at lunch, were very kind, and said that they understood the mistake, and had wrapped the lions leg with bandages and given it drugs for the pain. They went to the back, brought out the groggy and bandaged lion and handed it to the owners. They left without another word to me.
Then I woke up. If I was Joseph I would interpret my dream, but that’s not a gift I’ve been given. Any insights are welcomed.
As goes the day, it goes. I’m settling into writing again, and after having a scattered writing summer, I’m trying to reform my habits. Part of this has to do with my own writing idiosyncrasies. I’m a perfectionist who has a hard time sitting down and writing unless I feel completely in a zone. I don’t want to write if the words don’t flow. This is something I have to get over, and learn how the lessons of editing myself into quality expression.
It is also the case that I always perform best under pressure and deadline. Right now there is a vague expectation without any specifics, so I drift a bit more than I usually would. I come alive under immediate stress and pressure, and am dulled under the vague long term realities of regular life. I’m working at it.
I also realize that moving forward right now is like walking in a swamp. There are spiritual realities swirling about which impede any positive progress. It is easy to succumb, too easy, except for the pressure within my own soul. I have to be faithful to that call in order to find real life.
So, I slog my way down through the pages, taking short breaks to read the news or write other thoughts such as this.
We’ll see someday if this is worth it. It’s hard to have perspective when one is stuck in the mud and marsh.