MY DREAMS ARE TELLING ON ME

Published December 27, 2018 by Nan Mykel

After a lonely Christmas, a series of repetitive dreams reminded me what I miss most: the content missing from Longfellow’s lines on ships passing in the night.  My graduate school days in clinical psychology were the happiest and most alive of my life. Everyone was either real or trying to be so. “Thank you for the gift of your anger” was a common response to a heated exchange, as well as my more frequent “I know, and I’m working on it.”

How do other retired therapists cope with the everyday prattle?  I seem to have turned avoidant from fellow humans who avoid their depths.  The well-bred don’t cry at funerals; the “strong” avoid their own depths.

It’s been said that the layperson is leery of shrinks for fear they are psychoanalyzing them on sight. A smidgen of that is true. After years of training and observation of body language, it’s difficult not to pick up on a stranger’s stress, concerns or ambivalences.  And there’s no “I know, and I’m working on it” in sight.  Often there’s empathy for the struggles a stranger appears to be going through, but no way to comfortably acknowledge it.

I first noticed him at a free church lunch, due to some leaves caught in his dark knit cap.  After the luncheon I saw him seated in the damp grass, smoking. I’ve been wishing he had a pad to sit on, to protect him from the cold damp.  Maybe that’s just a problem of my loose boundaries.  (That’s something else I’m “working on.”)

I’ve learned one must be extra specially careful to phrase it just right when attempting to reach out. I tried ineptly with a fellow blogger and received a rather intense bite. Served me right for attempting to go where angels fear to stray (glad I can be free with my cliches here).

On top of it all is my slipping into senescence, and making errors in judgment.  I still cannot absorb nourishment from prattle, however.

OH, ABOUT THE DREAMS in my heading?  I’ve had a slew of them in the brief time since Christmas in which I’m attracting others to a group support session. The room in my house is overflowing with people–some I know and others strangers. In my past I not only participated as a member of a greatly therapeutic group, but also formed a women’s consciousness raising group in graduate school and another with staff wives at the mental health center where I worked.  In the therapy group we always began with each person describing how he/she was feeling at the beginning of group–remember, one usually feels different ways at the same moment.  And in reality I did lead many groups with regularly troubled individuals plus the groups with sex offenders.

Working for years at the nearby prison has isolated me from most of the psychologists in my small town,  and I do wonder how other longterm retired psychotherapists maintain.

Maybe it was just the magic of my graduate school milieu that developed my thirst for the depths.

5 comments on “MY DREAMS ARE TELLING ON ME

    • I don’t see why one should forever consider another’s feelings, even those of very close family while one is flabbergasted at the dismissal of one’s own emotions. Glad you somehow got through the day. It’s luckier for me as I decided long ago to forego on the December holidays and I live remote so am not bombarded by the advertisements and minute by minute reminder of what it all is supposed to mean. It won’t help the hurt but know it isn’t you.

      Liked by 1 person

  • Please share your own experiences here...

    Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

    WordPress.com Logo

    You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

    Twitter picture

    You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

    Facebook photo

    You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

    Connecting to %s

    This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

    Pacific Paratrooper

    This WordPress.com site is Pacific War era information

    Edge of Humanity Magazine

    An Independent Non-Discriminatory Platform With No Religious, Political, Financial, or Social Affiliations

    K E Garland

    Inspirational kwotes, stories and images

    Nguyễn Thị Phương Trâm

    Art and Literature Beyond Borders

    Thar She Blows!

    I hope you live well, dear, with love, peace and rice.

    Darcy Hitchcock

    Envision a sustainable future

    Barbara Crane Navarro

    Rainforest Art Project - Pas de Cartier !

    Kate Lunsford

    Reflective Writing

    Rosamond Press

    A Newspaper for the Arts

    Ned Hamson's Second Line View of the News

    Second Look Behind the Headlines - News you can use...

    Aging Capriciously

    Divergent Thoughts on Life, Love and Death

    Some View on the World

    With previous posting of "Our World" on Blogger

    Filosofa's Word

    Cogito Ergo Sum

    Trent's World (the Blog)

    Random Ramblings and Reviews from Trent P. McDonald

    Catxman's Cradle

    Catxman dances, Catxman spins around, leaps ....... // I sing a song, a song of hope, a song of looove -- a song of burning roses. / Synthesizer notes. // (c) 2021-22

    Leadings: Judy Lumb

    Africa 2012 / Britain 2014 / Peru / Standing Rock 2016

    GABBY GRAYWHISKERS

    kitchen talk

    Salted Caramel

    Blogging, Motivation, Lifestyle and much more.

    %d bloggers like this: