Friday, February 15, 2013

teaching tooth brushing; the son's return

Good morning, everybody.

Dream #1

I was in a bathroom with three of my nephews. The only nephew I recognized was my youngest nephew. We were all standing in front the sink. I was apparently teaching my nephews how to brush their teeth.

All of my nephews may have been playing with their toothbrushes in a really messy way. But at least the older two seemed to be brushing their teeth. But my youngest seemed to be really messy. He was running his toothbrush back and forth under the faucet and knocking it against the sink. It was hard to tell whether he was having trouble learning how to rinse his toothbrush correctly or whether he was just having fun being messy.

I backed away from the sink. I seemed to be backing out of the bathroom altogether. I may have started to give up hope on being able to teach my nephews after all. But I stopped at the threshold. I didn't want to put off a feeling of being disappointed in my nephew. So I smiled and said, "My dear, little nephew," so he'd know I loved him.

Dream #2

I was reading a book, probably about some incident that had "really occurred" (at least in the dream world). A young man had gone missing. Most people had given the young man up for dead. But the young man's sister (?) and mother believed the young man was still alive.

The book had some narrative segments in conventional third person. But a lot of the book was, I think, letters between the mother and the sister. The mother kept living, somehow, as if the young man would be found. The sister was often ambivalent. Sometimes she seemed to criticize the mother for being so optimistic about finding the young man.

The conflict between the mother and sister eventually became pretty painful. The mother herself was even starting to wonder whether she was crazy. The conflict was so painful, and the waiting for the son so tedious, that I started flipping through the pages, toward the end of the book.

I must have read this book before. I knew there were one or two final letters from the mother, where she really thought she'd gone too far in her hopes, and where she was finally resolved to give up hope of seeing the young man alive again. I turned to these letters, knowing how beautiful they were, and knowing that the next letter or "article" in the book would reveal that the young man had been found alive.

I knew there was a photo, like from the 1940s, of the young man being escorted out of the car by two policemen, probably because he was too weak to walk.

I knew that there was also a photo of the mother as she had gone to reunite with the young man. The woman was kind of stately, elegant, wearing a white dress and a small hat with a feather on top and a small, net veil coming down from the brim of the hat and down just over the woman's brow.

I knew that there was some part near this climax where the mother had decided to wear this outfit before she'd known the young man had been found. She'd called it her reuinion dress. Now that the young man had been found, the mother felt justified in having worn the dress. This didn't quite make sense to me, given that, just before, the mother had resolved to give up hoping for the young man's return.