Last night I had a dream. Of course, any story that starts like that is bound to be disturbing or lame or both. And I’m particularly bad about talking about my dreams because I can never remember how they start. Talking about my dream is like watching an old Dali movie, where the picture just fades into an eerie tableau that makes no sense. So that’s where I’ll begin:
I’m sitting on one of several hard plastic chairs lined up along the wall of large grey room, about the size of a small gymnasium. Other people are with me, waiting for their turn to try out the new “flying” equipment––a series of cables strung from the wall and ceiling. (Is it exercise equipment, performance art, some sort of therapy? Who can say?) The person hooked into the equipment right now is doing some pretty cool stuff; as the instructor urges him on, he is letting go of his fears, flipping around and over and zipping about.
Then it’s my turn, and I’m both nervous and excited. I think back fondly of when I was younger––I was stronger then and a bit of a daredevil. But after a couple of minutes I’m loosening up and making some pretty awesome moves of my own. While not like the “flying” I’ve experienced in other dreams, where I’m truly free, it’s really fun and I feel healthy and giddy and full of joy.
I finally lower myself to the floor, laughing and exhausted, and the instructor comes up to me and says in amazement, kind of sympathetically:
“Wow. You still think you’re going to have a baby girl someday.”
I woke up a moment later, but not before the dream-me sank down into a chair––stunned that the flying device had somehow let this nice man peer into my soul––and started to sob. Even after I pulled myself awake, my chest continued to ache.
Seriously, what the fuck? I can’t even have a simple, stupid, fun little dream without being smacked down by reality? It isn’t hard enough to be hurting when I’m awake, now I have to hurt while I’m asleep?
Truthfully, I wasn’t that surprised. If there is anything I’ve learned in the last few months it is that there is no escape from the pain of childlessness. I had hoped that my forced vacation from cycling, while frustrating, would be a bit of a relief. But in some ways it’s much, much worse. I am consumed by jealousy, not so much of people with little babies, but of people with actual honest-to-god kids, people with families. I babysat my 6-year-old nephew last weekend, and it was lovely, but after I had put him to bed I just wanted to scream and yell it isn’t fair! He was 2 ½ years old when I started TTC. I had thought he would play with my kids (note the bitterly ironic use of the plural), not babysit them!
(By the way, he informed me that he would “think about” liking my child, but only after it was four years old. I love that kid.)
I think that being “on a break” is making cycling seem so distant and foreign that I can’t believe I’m going to be back in it next year. I told someone recently about how long I’ve been trying, and about what I’ve done so far, and it sounded seriously deranged. This was what I saw in my dream—a stranger’s pity at my continued belief that I might actually have a baby someday. Am I crazy to think this still might happen?
When I woke up from that dream, I realized that the thing that had bothered me the most was the invasion of my privacy. It wasn’t that this guy saw my desire to have a child, it was his knowing that I always pictured myself having a girl. Of course, now that I’m awake it seems odd to be mad at my subconscious for knowing what I think about. It’s hard to be mad at yourself for violating your own privacy. But none of this makes sense, anyway.
Your Bad Bloggy Friend, the Babychaser