When I was seventeen a number of catastrophic changes
occurred in my life
. In the beginning of the year I signed my infant daughter
over for adoption
and moved out of my father's house
. In June I was in a near fatal car accident
that left me with damaged vocal cords
, more than 300 stitches in my forehead, and a progressively worsening spinal injury
. And in August, the hardest blow of all, my father
died from cancer
of the everything
. I was working my first ever job
and having a terrible time getting in to work
on time each day.
I suppose it would help a tiny bit if I explained that I grew up in a hippy household in Boston, with many roomates of different shapes, colors, and hair lengths, and that communally the adults pooled their cash and bought 150 acres of land in Nova Scotia, Canada.
A few months after Dad's death, I woke up from a very intense dream. I've never forgotten a single detail of it.
We were all up on the farm, working the fields (which didn't really exist, just a couple of small gardens and well, okay, one field full of marijuana plants.) I was working beside my father, gathering wheat into sheaves, when I noticed that everybody else was standing there looking at the sky. Then everybody except me and Dad turned and walked into the woods.
Looking up, I saw three nuclear warheads in the sky, just sort of hovering there. I yelled "DAD! Get into the trees! HURRY!" just as an immensely bright light dazzled me.
The next thing I knew, my father and I were in my bedroom in the house I was currently sharing with several housemates in my real life. Dad was lying on my bed, moaning. When I looked at him, I saw that he was covered with keloid scars. Then I caught a look at myself in the mirror and saw that my face was a disaster area.
I started panicking and babbling that I had to find a working telephone so that I could call my manager, Tony, and let him know that I wouldn't be in today due to nuclear holocaust. My Dad told me "Schmoo, you have to go to work. You'll get fired if you don't." My response was to the effect that I was traumatized for life and would never go outside again. I looked at him, covered with keloids, and it struck me hard that he was going to die from this mess, and then I looked at myself in the mirror again and said "Oh fuck, I'm scarred for life, and sterile, too."
Then I woke up. I think that this dream was my way of trying to put an explanation to the garbage that had been happening in my life in the last ten months or so. When I talk about or write about this dream, I can still see it just as vividly as I did twenty-three years ago. I don't think this one will ever fade from memory.