Just to keep things light…. um…. last night I dreamt I had cancer. The contours of my dream are slowly receding from my memory, the way they do, but I do remember this: A distracted young female doctor gave me the news in a poorly lit office saying cruelly, “At this point I can usually reassure my patients, but I can’t do that for you today.”
I had some cancer below the belt and above the thighs in the pipes of my reproductive system. It was something non-existent that my subconscious, drawing on distant memories of 8th grade biology, made up and probably called “cervical tube cancer.” I remember crying a lot. I remember my parents crying a lot. I remember them encouraging me to ask the doctor for more clarification, more specifics. What was my prognosis? What hope could she offer? What therapies? When I did so, she gave me a book with the title “Dying: It’s Just Like Falling Asleep.” I hated that dream doctor. She offered me no hope. She only attempted to offhandedly soften the news of my impending death.
Then I woke up, the profound sadness from my dream lingering around in the pit of my belly. Of course I was thankful for waking to my cancer-free reality, but the vestigial dream hurt clung on like a .....well… cancer, squeezing my heart.
I lay in bed feeling philosophical. Why this dream? Why now? The panic from my dream led me to think that perhaps it was prescient. Perhaps my body was telling me that I did indeed have cancer. But I dismissed that thought as too foofy, even for me, and anyway too fucking depressing to deal with before dawn. So, I moved on to other theories.
Perhaps the dream was my “getting hit by a bus.” Isn’t that what people say? “Things are going so well, I’ll probably get hit by a bus.” Maybe it was my subconscious bracing me for some impending disaster since my life was too precariously smooth for fate to tolerate.
Right now my life is in balance. That’s not saying I’m ecstatic every day and don’t have frustrations and sadness. But the truth about contentment is not that you walk around blissed out, but that you walk around in balance. Bliss is what your 16 year old self hopes for, balance is what your adult self knows will truly bring you joy.
Right now I have achieved that elusive equilibrium that so many modern people strive for. I scratch my productive itch by working part time from home. I get intellectual and creative satisfaction through my writing. I spend a good part (but not the WHOLE part) of my day with my little loves. I see friends every day. I practice yoga. I take Kiswahili lessons. I run. I cook. I enjoy my weekends exploring Kenya with friends. I have help. I’m continually learning.
None of it is too much, and none of it is not enough. The trade-offs so many people have to make between all these facets of life, for me, are in balance. I probably shouldn’t say that out loud.
However, my inner harmony is subsidized by the fact that my husband is working more than full time at a very demanding job, and this means his life is currently out of whack. But.. um… let’s ignore that for the moment, and back to me...
So, my current theory is that my death doom dream is my neurotic sub-conscious’ way of telling me not get too comfortable in my comfortable life. But screw you subconscious: you just allowed me to spend half a day musing about how well balanced I am. So, backfire!
Unless of course I’m of over thinking the whole thing and it’s my body’s way of reminding me that I’m overdue for a pap smear.
Could be either...
Could be either...