Dreamages: A Primer by Timothy Tate

7. Shame On You (Recurring Dreams)

You are walking down a street from your childhood. It looks the same. Your secret place is still there: under a tree, in the attic-- just as you left it.

What is your recurring dream? Are you trying to get somewhere, to find something? Maybe a beastly force is chasing you -- and your legs will not work. You are late; you missed the test. You failed.

Shame. Shame on you: you are not good enough, you do not fit in. When we were young, we built a wall around those feelings. And we stashed our shame inside. Where did you hide yours? In the attic? The basement? Do you remember? The repeating dream will not leave you alone until you do.

Pay attention to the details. ``I am walking down a street in Boston looking through old record and book stores. I had this dream so often that I stopped having it -- it became part of me; I thought about it weekly, daily. Many years later I realized that the word 'old' was what bugged me the most. Something about looking through old things. I returned for a long, involved walk around the place I grew up... and the dream released its hold on me. I was confused why the dream would be in Boston and the real life solution in the town of my high school years. But, indeed, that was the crux of whatever in the dream was gnawing at me (it had do with the compromises I made as a kid to get by -- decisions I had forgotten)."

An' here I sit so patiently
Waiting to find out what price
You have to pay to get out of
Going through all these things twice

--Bob Dylan, Stuck Inside of Mobile With the Memphis Blues Again

... The Riddler (8).

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