Last night I attended an event meant to highlight the next chapter in a partnership for two people in love. My own ties to the couple were not very strong yet I felt honored to be invited to an event that reinforced that belief that true love and commitment is still out there. Yet, shock overcame me when I saw in the distance the very person who had shaken my faith in love. Waves of intense, varied emotions were felt so vividly that my self-awareness was awakened. I found myself creating what was still a very subdued scene compared to the storm of emotions within me by immediately making my presence known and sharing a warning with the closest guest to the person who had caused me heartbreak. The subdued scene brought a very distant Duke acquaintances to the forefront to ask me more questions. A huge part of me was still treading carefully because the reality of the situation was that the timing was still wrong to address what had happened in my past. A small part of me wished I had remained silent and nonchalant but another part of me knew that this was a rare opportunity that had eluded me for far too long! Even worse, I still could not say everything that I wanted to say or even things that I desperately felt like I needed to say to him. Instead I found myself giving a watered down version of the catastrophe of a failed marriage to people whom were already judging based on partial information. The feeling of being on defense despite making the first move was still there. And then, I woke up with that uncomfortable feeling of being unprepared, sensing an attack, and such vivid memories about a mere DREAM.
Yes, everything I’m describing is from a dream I had last night (actually in March since this was not immediately published). I often wonder what it will take for these things that are clearly lingering in my mind to be resolved. Will I ever find the place of comfort and happiness that define my idea of success in life? While this blog no longer focuses as often on personal events, I felt compelled to share my dream and its self-growth lesson with my readers.
I got married with the intention of growing a love forever with a man whom I believed I could and would share all my hopes, ideas, and thoughts. He was even aware of many of my struggles that I have shared with you all here: speaking about my rape, dealing with my parent’s divorce, and even (on a lighter note) my home remodel challenges. Yet, no matter how well I know myself or even how well another person like my estranged husband knows me, our mind is constantly processing and assessing situations in our lives from our past, for our present, and into our future. The abilities of our mind to gather, store, and process data is sometimes taken for granted. While I was sleeping, the emotions I felt in this case (related to my own failing marriage) were incredibly strong.
As far as my own relationship with myself and defining who I strive to become, I am glad that my subconscious awakened me to the need to face my desires for additional peace particularly when it came to the state of my marriage at that point in time. The state of marriage and its success in modern society overall must concern me too since the setting for this dream was at the wedding of an acquaintance. Topics of love, relationships, growth, and perseverance are always of interest of me. Don’t get my wrong, the estranged status of my husband does still weigh on me but far less heavily than in the past and far less heavily than the fact that in the U.S. at large “43% of first marriages end in divorce” and most people who fail at their first marriage will also fail at their second marriage according to Time magazine in 2013. I know that there have been cultural changes about whether or when to marry but that does not prevent me from getting caught up in my own personal beliefs about marriage. My dream highlights the importance of marriage in my life and the bigger picture to me is that I must learn and grow in order to become more successful when it comes to building my future whether I am single or not.
Plainly stated, allowing feelings to stay pent-up among my thoughts while and awake and sleeping is not likely to be very healthy in the long run. Overall, my point is to acknowledge that, as always, there is room for improvement in my life (and yours too!). More importantly, I am happy to say that months after that dream both my conscience and subconscious have allowed me to acknowledge my feelings and, even better, move on from them! I have learned that we must listen to our emotions and choose wisely how to respond to them. Generally speaking, while we cannot fundamentally change the people around us (they have to change themselves!) whether they hurt us or not, we can always focus on the lesson given to ourselves and use that as our impetus to peace, happiness, and success.