Thursday, March 13, 2008

Back to Knox. Another Study in Dream Anxiety.

Back To Knox. Another Study in Dream Anxiety.
Current mood: nervous
Category: Dreams and the Supernatural

These sober dreams are something else, man!

Even weirder, a focal character in today’s early morning dream, my old suitemate appeared, and then I awakened this morning to a friend request from her here on myspace! Spooky!

My dreams as of late have all, in different ways, centered around anxiety and me not knowing where to go when, things breaking down, me being confused and a general sense of building chaos out of which I fail to find resolution before the dream ends. They all stem from my pattern of taking small life problems and balling them into one catastrophe which I question the capability to solve. This is a life-skill-issue I’m presently working on, but an integral part of my spiral into alcohol addiction (that blog’s not done yet) and eventual treatment (three weeks sober today, yo). The night prior was a similarly clusterfucked menagerie of mounting problems and confusing messages, though it didn’t take place at college.

This dream found me back at Knox, my alma mater, in Galesburg, IL. I was a senior, though I thought I’d already graduated, and I was a mother, though my son kept appearing and disappearing as a character in the the point where I wasn’t sure afterwards if he was there or not, or home with Craig, or what.

In reality, I’d lived 3 out of 4 years in a dorm building called Williston Hall, a small, indie-vibed little building that housed a lot of punkers, artists, dorks and non-Greek types. Many of us had our own rooms, thanks to a lax policy on roommating that hinged on placing students recently returning from study abroad after the previous spring’s housing selection boom, or (occasionally forged) doctors’ notes that would plead to the Director of Housing that said student required a single as opposed to a double room because of things like excessive cleaning OCD’s, mental illness, allergies, blah blah, thereby rendering the student incapable of tolerating a roommate.

My actual senior year, such was the case. Lorri and I had a 3-bedroom suite (sharing one bathroom) on the top floor of Williston, on the front corner of the building. Our other suitemate was in London her first term, and I had a master key to all the rooms (a whole separate story) so we used the spare bedroom to house my parakeet, Sparky, when he’d be too noisy and wake me up too early in the morning). That dorm room was the bomb. I’d duct-taped two single bed frames together for a big-ol’ bed, and my view on the corner of the building allowed me nothing but surrounding sunshine. My room was decorated in nothing but Beatles and Eric Clapton posters and pictures of family and friends, while Lorri’s room had a uniquely Asian vibe, fresh from her studies in Indonesia.

But back to the dream.

I was 35, had to suddenly finish another term at school, and move back into Williston, which in the 13 years since my graduation, had endured a housing regeneration and two newly constructed buildings were now to the left and right of it. It had been, however, set up with 2 cable-ready mounted LCD TV’s and central air. But I was given a roommate, some East Indian chick, who’d stayed there the whole summer prior, and had infiltrated every inch of the dorm room with her stuff, thus there was no room for any of my stuff, like my son, for example.

She had this enormous dark cherry wood bedroom set and armoire, and shelving all over, and a floor-to-ceiling refrigerator. Her clothes and CD’s took up every last inch of the room, and I felt my anxiety increase. My mom and brother had helped move a Williston cot bed into my room, and get some of my boxes of belongings out of the dorm basement storage, but I had nowhere to put them. I’d forgotten to bring basics like sheets and blankets, and towels, and had only half of my CD collection. I remember makeshift making the bed with my scrubs from the hospital that I usually wear as pajamas. I didn’t know where Luke was supposed to bunk, or where Craig was.

From the basement, my brother brought up two parakeets in a humongous cage that shockingly lived through an entire summer of me not being at Knox and not feeding them. (They looked just like the one yellow and one blue parakeets I currently have.) Their cage was filthy, and needed a good vacuuming, and they kept escaping and flying all over the room. Then appeared the other roommate’s cat, which activated my memory of having a single room because of my allergies to begin with.

I ventured upstairs to find Lorri and her husband Cory, who got to room together along with their two young children, in what looked like a really comfy dorm set up, to borrow one of their three mini-fridges, since my Indian roommate had filled the entire big one with her own food and drink. "How come you guys got to room together and I got stuck with HER? There’s no room for any of my stuff!" I pleaded.

Lorri suggested I calm down by going for a walk to the mailboxes in the basement of Seymour Hall in order to get our schedules for the term out of our mailboxes. Lorri, of course, already had her schedule memorized, but I, naturally, had no idea which classes I’d even registered for when I got to campus. Hell, not even knowing why I had to complete another term was bad enough. "But Lorri," I said, "I don’t have a key yet to my room or the building, how will I get back in?" "They’ll issue you a new key tomorrow. Don’t worry about it." Ok.

By then, it was time for lunch. I was miffed that the only lunch choices left in the cafeteria by the time we got there were muffins and baked goods, but I made due. After clearing my tray and starting to walk out, I noticed someone had left their wallet on a podium in the cafeteria. Turned out to be Al Franken’s wallet, which I only noticed after seeing his registration card for a 1985 Oldsmobile. He was a visiting professor, I think, and I then spent significant time seeking him out to return his wallet and go back to Williston Hall.

By the time I got back to the dorm, it’d started to rain, and I desperately wanted a cigarette, but my Indian roommate didn’t want me to smoke up her overly-furnished room, and I walked to the convenience store down the street to buy a lighter, all the time hoping the new LCD TV would pick up WGN on cable so I could watch the Chicago news. Along the walk, I made a mental note of more of the necessary items from home I’d forgotten to pack--my backpack, for example.

Still, the alarm sounded at 7:30 am and mercifully bounced me back to my cozy bed in my cozy apartment, minus the excessive furniture of an unwelcome roommate.

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