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"Mel", A full transcript of an Electric Dreams dream sharing group

Richard Catlett Wilkerson


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  Wilkerson, Richard Catlett (2000 April). "Mel", A full transcript of an Electric Dreams dream sharing group.. Electric Dreams 7(4). Retrieved December 31, 2001 from Electric Dreams on the World Wide Web: http://www.dreamgate.com/electric-dreams




 

"Mel", A full transcript of an Electric Dreams dream sharing group.

Richard Wilkerson

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"At one point I collected all my notebooks and was about to put them in a drawer when I thought, "I can't just stuff this in a drawer!" I believe a meaning for this dream could be that this dream and all your work on it is very precious to me. And, although this Internet is not a private place, giving this dream to you feels safe to me." Angela

Introduction

The Electric Dreams community began as an online dream sharing group in 1994 and has continued over the years to explore how the Internet can be used for dreamwork and dream sharing. Some of these experiments have been very successful and have continued as long term groups. The DreamWheel, for example, has been in continuous operation since 1995. Many moderators and members have shared dreams through this e-mail based discussion list. The model for the group, based on the work of John Herbert, Ph.D., has been used by many other groups in variations that suit the needs of the participants. One spin-off group, called eDreams, has graciously consented to allow the Electric Dreams E-zine to publish a full transcript of a group that took place between January and February of 2000. Normally these sessions are very confidential and closed to general public inspection.

The dreamer was asked (after the group was done) if she was willing for the session to be published, and upon obtaining her consent, the consent of the other participants followed. Below is an example release form collected by the facilitator:

[ X] Yes, I agree to allow Electric Dreams to publish my comments to XXXXX about the dream "Mel", posted February 7, 2000 on the Electric Dreams eDreams group. I understand that I will be assigned a pen-name and all references to individuals and groups will be changed as well.

The process used by the group is quite simple. The participants sign up on the elist, usually anonymously, agree to the ethics statement and send in dreams to the facilitator. The facilitator orders the dreams and the group begins working on them one at a time. First the group is requested to send in questions about the dream to the dreamer. That is, all questions are sent to the elist, but addressed to the dreamer. These questions are for clarification of dream imagery rather than calls for interpretation. The dreamer may or may not reply. Then the facilitator moves the group onto the comment phase. Here each participant takes the dream as if it were his or her own dream and sends these notes to the group. Again, the dreamer may or may not reply and some final discussion and closure may occur. For a fuller description of the process, see "A Brief History of the Electric Dreams DreamWheel" in Electric Dreams 7(4), May 2000, and the "DreamWheel Instructions" by Kathy Turner and Richard Wilkerson.

Many thanks are in order.
To the dreamer, here named "Angela", whose generosity and openess has made this particular dreamwork possible, we are all in your debt.
To the facilitator, whose editing skills in bringing all the comments and questions and answers together into one document and being instrumental in the selection, many thanks.
To the eDreams group who consented to have their questions and comments published, again, many thanks.





The Dream

Date: Fri, 28 Jan 2000
Angela's Dream

Mel 12/12/99 7:15A
I'm in the room where we all gather before we start working. (Not true in waking life). On this day, I go to talk to Mel. Two other people are here already and look asleep. We talk. We get closer. I think, Maybe today will be the day. She tugs on me a little. We are as close as we can get. We kiss on the face. I'm scared. It doesn't feel good, but I'm afraid this will get out of control so I open my eyes and say, "Don't you dare kiss me on the lips." She smiles and opens her eyes and says, "Why not?" We lie on the couch. I look around at the other people. The two men look asleep but one opens his eyes halfway and closes them. It's possible he is pretending to be asleep. The others don't look like they are paying attention to us. I answer, "Because nobody knows I'm whatever it's called." I put my hand under her. We lie there. I wonder how she knows, so I ask, "How do you know? Is it the way I look, or dress, or what?" Mel: "Oh, the other day you mentioned not having any eggs and so had to order some." I picture the shipment I had gotten and wonder how that is evidence.

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Dreamer's Answers To Questions

From: Angela
Date: Sat, 29 Jan 2000

Dear Bubbles,

Thanks for your questions. I'm glad you are willing to touch this one.

1) Describe Mel. Does she seem the same as in life?

A) Mel was exactly the same as in waking life. She is a 30+/- black woman that grew up on the tough side of town. She has extremely short hair, wears men's work boots and a leather jacket. She is not someone the "world" would consider pretty or beautiful, but in making an effort to get to know her, I found a sparkle in her eyes and smile that touches my heart. I like her very much.

2) why are you scared and why doesn't it feel good? only because people are around or what exactly?

A) I'm scared because kissing another woman is supposed to be so wrong to want to do, I'm married and I can already tell (at this point in the dream) if I let down my guard I will enjoy this and that will be very confusing to me. I'm scared because I wanted this to happen and here is my big chance, but fear has set in. When I think in the dream, "It doesn't feel good," I'm actually thinking, "This doesn't feel good yet." This is partially due to being too scared to let it feel good.

3) Are the men "sleeping" near you lovers? Do you know them? Describe what you can of them.

A) The men are unfamiliar to me in waking life but are people I work with in the dream. They are asleep in separate chairs, kind of slouched down like when one falls asleep watching TV. They look to be about 55+ years old. In the dream I think they sleep during this gathering time before work because they think it is a dumb thing to be social with the other workers but it is a requirement to at least be here for it.

4) Do you understand what Mel means when she speaks of eggs?

A) Yes. The eggs are human ovum.

5) what are you talking about in your last sentence: "I picture the shipment I had gotten and wonder how that is evidence"

A) In this sentence in this dream, I am recalling the ovum (eggs) I had ordered and received days earlier because (in the dream) I don't have any. Not because of menopause but because I have some defect and just don't have any. What the dreaming me pictures is a small open package, kind of like a sardine can, packed full with small jelly-like "eggs". I wonder how having no ovum is evidence or would suggest to Mel that I may be 'whatever it's called'. (The dreaming me can't seem to come up with the thought or words lesbian or bisexual.) ((To tell you the truth, the waking me has the same problem.)) --

Thank you so much Bubbles for these questions. I appreciate the opportunity to answer them

Take care,
Angela

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

From: Angela
Date: Mon, 31 Jan 2000

Dear "an elemental",
It is my desire to answer your questions as clearly as possible. I wish I could draw you a picture. The dream is still very clear to me, but I've changed a lot since having it. I'm going to do my best to stick with my thoughts and feelings as they were at the time of the dream.

Q/ Please describe everything you can about the room (eg colour, atmosphere, where everyone is seated/standing etc., who the people are, what else is in the room, where is it in relation to your work). Also where are you in the room? (eg when you enter, when you move close to Mel? When you lie down with Mel? Do you change position after that?) Do you have any sense in the dream about what work you are all involved in and why you need to meet before hand? Do you in your daytime life work with Mel?

A/ A large room that does not exist in waking life. About 30'x 40'. Ceiling height is about 15'. The door is on a 30' side. Several windows on one of the 40' walls. If you were to walk in through the door into the room, picture yourself entering on a stage of an school gym. Walk straight ahead several steps to three stairs going down into the gym/room. The stairs are the entire width of the room. The window wall would be to your left. I am already in the room when the dream begins, more or less in the middle. The room is dusty and messy. Kind of depressing. I see lots of gray and beige tones. Through the windows I can see it is a sunny day. There is a hodge podge of furniture. Like this assortment of couches, chairs, tables are just bits and pieces of things nobody wants any more. Like thrift shop items. No organized arrangement. The chairs the two men are in are cushy arm chairs with low backs. I see Mel across the room and walk to her (maybe 12 feet). We stand facing each other, about two feet apart, and there is a high table or ledge between us. Kind of like the size and dimensions of an ironing board. We are about 5 feet from the two men at this point, not too far from the center of the room, but closer to the side with windows. Later in the dream when I notice others have arrived, maybe three, they are standing on the stairs chatting. All women I believe, and again, not familiar to me in waking life, not strangers in the dream. Where is work? Well, we all work in different departments but out through that door is where we will all go to work. We are all involved in the work we do in waking life: the various duties in the commercial printing field. Mel and I are employees of the same co. But we have different duties. I see her for a few minutes in the mornings and chat with her but we don't work together. In the dream it is policy that we all show up early for socializing. Some kind of philosophy the boss has to promote camaraderie between employees. When I lie down with Mel we are on a couch near the high table and the sleeping men. No one changes position after that.

Q/ Do you have any sense about yourself (are you just as you are now? what kind of clothes? What colours?

A/ I'm the same. I'm wearing my waking-life brown leather jacket. (Mel is wearing her waking-life black leather jacket.)

Q/ When Mel "tugs on you" what does she actually do?

A/ We are both leaning our forearms on the 'ledge' table thing. Our hands are near each other so she only has to move slightly to grab the sleeve of my jacket near the wrist and pull me toward her. She tugs on my right sleeve with her left hand. Not hard, just enough to let me know she'd like me closer. Like an invitation, and I may move closer if I'd like that too.

Q/ When you put your hand under Mel, how do you do that?

A/ We are side by side on our backs so I easily slide my right hand under her 'rear end' between her and the couch. This is so she won't think I don't like her advances. I want to put off the kiss on the lips, but I want her to know I'm not putting her off. I don't want her to give up on me.

Q/ What does the sofa look like (what colour? what kind? - you see I have a picture of a chaise lounge in the middle of the room!! I bet your sofa is different!!).

A/ Your sofa sounds good. Mine is a long, three cushion, greyish-green. A bit dishevelled. It's soft. Easy to sink down into, like the chairs are.

Q/ When you say you remember the shipment - what does that mean? Were the eggs shipped to you? Did they arrive with other cargo? If so what was the other cargo? Where were they shipped from? Did they arrive "at work" or did you get them somewhere else?

A/ I'm remembering the UPS package that had arrived for me at work, opening it and seeing the eggs I had ordered. Not sure about other cargo and I only know the eggs came from where ever I had ordered them. The main part of the dream-memory of this is picturing the open package.

Q/ And why did you call the dream "Mel"?

A/ I called the dream Mel because what was happening between us was so "charged" and so be easy to recall the dream by title. If I had titled it The Kiss that would be confusing since I dream a lot about kisses. (I'm probably not supposed to tell you that.)

Q/ Are any of your feelings different from feelings in your daytime life?

A/ My feelings about same-sex relationships? At the time of the dream, *regarding myself*, a sexual relationship with another woman was out of the question -- nothing I had thought of (I don't think I had thought of it.) Within the dream I knew that I was discovering that that was my desire. My feelings toward Mel? This is hard. I'm going to go back to my feelings towards Mel at the time I had this dream: I was attracted to her in a way. She is so different than I am it kind of drew me to her. Made me want to be close. I liked her very much, and still do. So that is the same. I also felt I had to dispel the prejudices of the other employees. Took on the job of setting an example of loving her so others would see it is safe to love her. (Ahh..., very good question, "an elemental"!)

Angela - asking questions of your dream gave me an interesting insight. Before asking I was most struck by your feelings in relation to Mel but while I worked through the questions I'd like answered I found that I was just as interested in any other detail eg where the sofa was!!

I still am most struck by my feelings in relation to Mel. They were the most vivid part of this dream. To me it doesn't matter where the furniture is but I truly hope I've given you a half-way decent picture of it. I am thankful it is important to you!

Take care,
Angela
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

From: Angela
Date: Wednesday, February 02, 2000

Dear Mimi, Thank you for being so kind as to work on this dream. Here are my answers to your questions.

Q/ When the dream opens, is Mel already in the room as you are entering the room, or does it open with both of you there? What is she doing when you first see her?

A/ The dream opens with us both in the room, more precisely, it opens with me noticing Mel is 'over there'. She is standing there alone. I don't know that she is doing anything but being there.

Q/ Can you say more about what you meant by "Maybe today will be the day"?

A/ In the dream I am thinking here, Maybe today will be the day that Mel will try to kiss me, like it is something I've been hoping will happen for some time. Also, maybe today will be the day I'll find out what it is like to be with another woman in general.

Q/ It sounds like Mel is cool and self-assured, while you're feeling anxious and awkward - is this right? Any other words you would use here?

A/ Yes, cool and self-assured is a perfect way to describe Mel (thank you). I can tell she is confident in herself. If I am receptive to her advances she will be happy, and if I turn her down, that's okay too. She would not feel stupid or embarrassed for trying. Me? Anxious, scared, uncomfortable about feeling so attracted to her. Uneasy about these new feelings I'm having. Guilty. Confused is certainly in the mix.

Q/ When the man "opens his eyes halfway," do you have any reaction, any thoughts about this?

A/ Yes. I want to answer Mel's question right away and know I can't if anyone is listening. For a moment I consider that he may really be awake and able to hear me. Then it would only be a matter of time before everyone knew. I quickly tell myself he is most likely asleep, and my desire to answer the question wins even though there is some risk. See, I am so scared Mel will give up on me -- see my hesitation as meaning I don't want to kiss her/be with her/like her, so I take the risk that the man might hear. I make no physical reaction.

Q/ How did you feel when you woke up?

A/ Quite shocked that I admitted in the dream that I'm "whatever it's called". Startled when I thought of Freud and "wish fulfilment" dreams.

Q/ What does "not having any eggs" mean (to the dream Angela)?

A/ That I have some medical defect that is making me not really a woman/not complete. ((I had another dream before this one where my daughter's pediatrician was examining me and found I had 800 ovaries (which meant eggs in the dream). I thought this sounded like great news. She didn't. She was very concerned and told me she would have preferred finding at least 900.))

Thank you! Take care always,
Angela

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

From: Angela
Date: Sun, 06 Feb 2000

Q/ In the dream description you had the statement: "Because nobody knows I'm whatever it's called." You've referred to this statement several times during this question phase. Do either of the terms 'lesbian' or 'bisexual' seem to accurately or fully describe what you are having difficulty describing here?

Dear Spiritplum,
A/ The short answer is, Yes, both. But that answer is not from within the dream. The dream ego did not know these words. 'Whatever it's called' is what this dream ego came up with in its frustration or maybe ignorance to say she is a person sexually attracted to someone of the same gender.

Thanks for the question, Spiritplum. I was hoping you were still here. Dreaming this dream brought back to memory your Lizzy Borden dream. Actually my comments on it. I remember saying something like, "If I were to touch a woman out of compassion and it turned to passion, that would certainly shift my entire world." That, as Klaatu would say, is an out-of-the-box comment.

Take care,
Angela

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

From: Angela
Date: Sun, 06 Feb 2000

Dear Yellow Sail,
Thanks for sending your Q's.

-- On this day, I go to talk to Mel. What is distinctive about "this" day?
A/ This day is not any other day. It's also a day where so far the conditions are right.

-- Is Mel her real name in waking life? Or is this a name you're using to protect her identity? If it's a name you've made up, is there any reason you chose that name? (Is it an abbreviation?)
A/ It's her real nickname.

-- Two other people are here already and look asleep. Are you aware at this stage that these are males?

A/ Yes.

-- We talk. In the dream, what do you talk about? In the dream, as you talk, what is going on inside you?

A/ I don't know what we talked about. Inside me I'm not really listening anyway because I'm noticing I'm attracted to her and this is distracting me.

-- We get closer. What is "closer"? How do you "get" it?

A/ Closer is nearer than before. I get it through cooperation. I add to it. She adds to it.

-- I think, Maybe today will be the day. What is "the day"?

A/ The selected piece of time. The chosen piece of time. The piece of time ordained for an event to happen.

-- She tugs on me a little. In the dream, what's meant by the verb to "tug"? How does one tug "on" someone? In the dream she tugs on you a little. What is a little tug? What would a big tug be?

A/ In the dream to tug means a gentle little pull. It is a signal. To tug on someone is a form of body language that includes touching another that lets someone know they want something. A little tug is a short pull in the form of a question. A big tug is a short pull in the form of a statement.

-- We are as close as we can get. How close is as close as "we can get"? Describe it.

A/ Close as we can get is an extremely small distance from touching. Any measurable amount closer and it would be called touching.

-- We kiss on the face. What part of the face? Who is kissing whom on what part of whose face?

A/ Mel is kissing me and I am kissing her on the cheeks, nose, forehead, chin, between the upper lip and nose.

-- I'm scared. What is "scared"?

A/ Scared is an uncomfortable feeling that is automatically triggered by an event that is seen, heard, felt, or imagined.

-- It doesn't feel good, but I'm afraid this will get out of control What doesn't feel good? What's "afraid"?

A/ Kissing her on the face doesn t feel good. Afraid in this context is worried or concerned.

-- so I open my eyes. In the dream, when did you close your eyes? and say, "Don't you dare kiss me on the lips. "What does it mean to "dare"? What's "you dare"? What's "don't you dare"?

A/ I closed my eyes as we began to kiss each other. To dare means to challenge. You dare means another takes a chance. Don't you dare means do not attempt, period.

-- She smiles and opens her eyes and says, "Why not?" We lie on the couch. I look around at the other people. The two men look asleep. What is "look"?

A/ Look is take in information through the eyes and it also is what is deduced after that information is digested.

-- but one opens his eyes halfway and closes them. It's possible he is pretending to be asleep. In the dream, what are the "others" doing? What is "paying attention" ? In the dream, what would they look like if they were paying attention to you? What would they be doing that they're not doing? What would they not be doing that they are doing?

A/ The others are standing on some stairs at the far end of the room and talking with each other. Not looking in my direction. Paying attention is using ones senses of hearing and sight to understand what another is doing or saying. If they were paying attention to me they would be looking at me, not talking to each other so they could take in more information about me. They would have their bodies turned in my direction. They would not be facing each other. They would not be talking.

-- I answer, "Because nobody knows I'm whatever it's called." What is meant by "nobody"? Who is "nobody"? In the dream, does "nobody" include the dream ego? In the dream, does "nobody knowing" something feel good or bad?

A/ Nobody is not anybody. Zero people. Nobody is everyone everyone I work with. Nobody did not include the dream ego. Nobody knowing feels to be safe. Safe is good.

-- "Whatever it's called": In the dream, what is "it"? In the dream, what else might "it" be? In the dream, is there a sense that "it" can only mean one thing and one thing only? Or might "it" be something else again or a variety of things?

A/ It is the total of the feelings and the cause of the feelings I'm experiencing. In the dream It means only one thing. I don't know what else it could have meant.

-- I put my hand under her. We lie there. What is it to "lie"?

A/ To lie is to be in the prone or supine position and not moving/moving much.

-- I wonder how she knows, What does she know? What is knowing? What is wonder?

A/ Mel knows I am the definition of "whatever it s called." Knowing is to have knowledge of. Wonder is to use ones brain in attempt to understand something.

-- so I ask, "How do you know? In the dream, what is the dream ego asking by the question "How do you know?" Know what?

A/ The dream ego is asking what information do you have that brought you to this accurate conclusion. She knows the feelings I'm experiencing and why I'm having them.

-- Is it the way I look What is "look"? or dress, What is meant by the verb to dress?

A/ Look is how I appear. To dress means to cover oneself with clothes.

-- Mel: "Oh, the other day you mentioned not having any eggs." What are eggs? What is "any"? and so had to order some. What is it "to order"?

A/ Eggs are living single cells of the female reproductive system that are half of what is needed to form young of the species. Any is one or more of something but it doesn't matter which one or ones. To order is a request from a person or company something one wants that the other has and is willing to part with usually for money. It is also to demand.

-- I picture the shipment What's a shipment I had gotten What is "gotten"?

A/ A shipment is an item or items delivered as opposed to retrieved. Gotten is to receive either by being given or by taking.

-- and wonder how that is evidence. What is "evidence"?

A/ Evidence is pieces of information used to determine if something is true.

Okay Yellow Sail. You wore me out! It's a good tired though. What are you going to do with all these definitions?

Take care,
Angela

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Comments

From: "an elemental"
Date: Mon, 07 Feb 2000

Angela - your dream touches a chord within me: If this were my dream I'd see it helping me to come to terms with my embarrassment complex. I see it portraying the mechanisms of that complex: I have a secret (it is about some defect I see within myself) AND at the same time I want and hope to be whatever I really am. Those two feelings (the fear and the desire) are at war within me. The result of that war is a failure to act: I become like the gym (something quite beautiful but also musty and stale; something on the outside of life ie a kind of anti-chamber to the real work) and I am like the men (tired and sleeping, not willing to participate in life). AND I am always confronted with situations which call up that double and impossible contradiction within me (Mel). AND when I do fall into these situations I am drawn to them but because of the double and impossible feelings I am emasculated (I cannot respond, but merely lie in an awkward way hoping that others read my desire and not my fear) - indeed my secret defect becomes visible in these very situations. And in the manner in which I relate (hiding my desires) I start yet another guilty secret (would the men tell others this guilty secret?). And so the circle I guess goes faster and faster and each time I move with my desire to end the barrenness, my fear intervenes and increases it.

So what can this secret be? What am I hiding? I do not know: it is not known to me. But I do have some clues it seems.

I think my desire is to love unconditionally, freely and totally (and here I am NOT thinking of sexual love). I think I have an image of myself that as a woman I must be particularly good at this. But all the time I fear I'm not woman enough, I fear I don't have eggs, I can't give new life through love. Is this my secret: that I can't love unconditionally? I always feel when I get to such waring wants and fears within me that the only safe place to stand is in the centre. And I see I am already near the centre of this area in which I am currently working. I also see that I have the desire to mix different aspects of myself (rather than going with an enlarged image of myself as either capable of total love or incapable and therefore less than a real woman). The signs are auspicious!! Things are going in the right direction. And the men - who knows what they might say if they noticed my "defect": perhaps I can have the grace to allow them to say whatever they will (and then I will deal with the consequences) - perhaps that would allow them to wake up and socialize too!! And the three woman: immediately I saw them I thought of the Three Graces (I don't know any more about them than their name). I suspect they are here to bestow their boons on me if I can let them move.

But I am also not at the centre - "I" am aligned with one aspects: what would happen if I loosened my attachment also to that aspect. What would happen if I let go my fear and was just myself: "defect" and all? I'd find the real word for whatever I am.

A lovely dream Angela.
"an elemental"

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

From: Spiritplum
Date: Sun, 6 Feb 2000

Hello Angela, this is Spiritplum
If this were my dream:

I am torn between seeing the dream on the one hand as an expression of repressed sexuality and on the other as a reflection of my desire to open up to something dark and loving and different within myself. Am I attracted to Mel and want to be with her and experience her or does her image in this dream open up something in me that has been in the dark and hidden away because it is so different from the other, familiar part of me that I show to the world? She is rough, she is the opposite color of me, she is calm and cool when I am anxious and unsure, she is not attractive like I am, is not as accepted by others as I am -- at least this is the sense I get in the dream.

The old men are sleeping or so it appears and I do really want to be with this woman and as long as they are sleeping it is safe. It will not be safe for me to be with her in this way if the others knew about it. I must remain cautious and I ask her not to kiss me, I cannot let the others see how I really feel about this woman and how much I really want to do this. I lay down with her on the couch but I still must remain cautious. I look at the old guy and I imagine that he is watching me and just pretending to be asleep. But yet I still want Mel to know how much I really do want to be here with her and I place my hand under her where no one can see but which has an unmistakable message: I really do want to continue this.

I can't think of the word I want to say in the dream that describes me here but now several go through my mind: lover of things different, cavorter of things dark and quiet, kisser of the forbidden fruit, woman who loves herself and wants to mate and bring forth new life with this dark mate. Of course! A new life, a new creation that is the offspring of both of us. A life that is the child of all of 'me'. New life begins with an egg and I cannot bring forth this new being without eggs and she knows how to provide them. What's more: she wants to be with me, maybe she's always been with me, off a little in the distance, waiting, quiet, in the shadows...

Thank you very much for this dream Angela, sexual images seem so powerful and personal and I admire and respect your confidence in our group to share this dream.

Peace,
Spiritplum

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

From: Klaatu
Date: Mon, 07 Feb 2000

Hi, Angela.

This is an interesting dream to work with--being a man, I have to stretch to try to make it mine. I hope something I see here
relates to your own experience in some way.

If this were my dream, I'd see that the part of me that manages my "work" (communication?) has ordered me and the parts of me I work with to socialize. The boss part of me seems to think that I and the other work-oriented parts of me need to get to know one another better, so we can be more productive.

I see a part of me I name Mel. "Mel" is an androgynous name, and it reminds me of "melt" and "meld." Mel's sexual orientation is ambiguous. She is different from me and the other co-worker parts of me, and I want to demonstrate acceptance. More than that, I'm attracted to her.

The Mel part of me seems attracted to me, too. We draw close to each other and display our affection. But I try to keep my feelings for Mel a secret. Mel is nurturing and care-giving, but there are those here who are so different from this that it is too dangerous to even describe them. Also, I need to be more comfortable with the fact that I'm attracted to this Mel part of me.

Mel tells me she has identified me by the fact that I have a defect, a lack of feminine creativity. I have ordered more, and to make myself a whole woman, I must take it in.

To me, this dream seems to be about self-exploration, about learning about myself, even parts of myself I hadn't recognized until now, because they seemed so different from what I conventionally regarded as "me." It's interesting that the boss part of me ordered this. I don't seem very enthused about getting to know all the parts of me, until I see Mel. Maybe if I get to know all these other seemingly drab, boring parts of me, I'll find some other surprises.

This Mel part of me seems to have something to do with my feminine creativity, with becoming a complete woman, maybe with balancing the male and female aspects of myself. She seems powerful and confident--definitely a part of myself I should get to know better.
--
Klaatu

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

From: Mimi
Date: Mon, 7 Feb 2000

Hi Angela. If "Mel" were my dream...

My first thought on waking from this dream is: What if I really do have latent lesbian or bisexual tendencies? This seems shocking to me. But I don't feel it's true, so the dream must have this happen in order to get my attention to focus on some very important issue. I am aware of Jung's (and others') view that when I feel an intense desire for someone, it may be because they display qualities that I wish I had, qualities that I may need to develop in myself instead of seeking them in someone else. So maybe it is Mel's way of being cool, confident, and self-assured, her difference, her mystique, that I would like to develop in myself. But this is an overall impression from the dream, and I really prefer to take a dream one step, one detail, at a time, and see where it takes me.

So. I start out in a room where all the parts of myself gather in preparation for work, that is, for doing my inner work on whatever issue this is about. My inner "boss" wants me/us to do this (or I/we might decline). In this place some masculine parts of me may be asleep, or pretending to be asleep. This could mean that they are not aware of this issue, or unwilling to see or change anything. Or maybe they represent a part of me that relies on reason for all my decisions, and I put them to sleep in this dream to test out a different way. But the fact that I do have them in this room and do think they may peek, could be saying that I realize any decisions I make on grounds other than reason will still have to pass my "reasonableness" test. (Unless I become a multiple personality!)

I go talk to Mel, this part of me that is cool, confident, etc. I'm getting closer to her - to being like her. I feel this part tugging on me, drawing me closer yet. Maybe this is a part of me that doesn't act primarily through reason, but rather through feeling, a feminine way of making decisions. Maybe today will be the day - the day I decide to go with my feelings? It's scary, and doesn't feel good, but I don't want to stop it either. Kissing each other on the face could have to do with facing the issue, or not hiding my face. "Don't you dare kiss me on the lips" could indicate that I am not yet ready to speak out about this new way. Maybe I'd like to keep it hidden until I feel more comfortable with it. But the Mel part says "Why not?" - why am I afraid to speak my truth, my feelings?

I had started out with a barrier between Mel and me, the table. This makes me think of "laying my cards on the table" - showing my hand. And then we lie on the couch. In my dreams, a couch often means a psychiatrist's couch - that is, it represents efforts to know my inner self better. And this is where one of the men opens his eyes halfway - so maybe I need to look at this with my thinking mind, open up my thinking to this new possibility in me, reason it out like a psychiatrist would. Because if I can understand it better it may become more acceptable to my reasonable self. I notice here that the other women in the room are not paying attention - maybe because they already understand this feminine need to act on feelings. Also, they are standing on the stairs, so may be able to deal with this on a higher level.

It does seem that on the couch I am trying to understand the new possibility in myself - "whatever it's called." I'm trying to figure out how the Mel part knows things. This sounds like intuition, as opposed to reason. And the Mel part says she knows because I ordered eggs - in other words, I sensed something lacking in myself, the seeds of new life, and took steps to "fix" this. This is evidence that I am ready to start incorporating my Mel self in my life. Perhaps I will start with some symbolic act, some ritual of initiation, something that will honor my feelings and intuition - in a reasonable way of course!

Angela - thanks for sharing this dream. I really enjoyed reading all your responses to questions and reading the others' comments - and loved making it my own. It sure did hit on *my* issues...
Mimi

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From: Spirit Walker
Date: Mon, 7 Feb 2000

Angela, If this were my dream......

I am in the room where we all are before we become left brain and analytical. I am in the feeling, passion, intuition room. Mel is there. We are sexually attracted to each other. I hope today will be today she makes the first move. We kiss, but I'm afraid I will lose control. I look around and see two men sleeping. One opens his eyes. They might see us ! I am excited at being caught, and at the same time, they (my rational side) will protect me from losing control, so it's safe. I want to go further with Mel, so we do subtle things. I ask Mel how she knows that I am attracted to her, that I am lesbian or bisexual. She tells me that it is because I announced that I don't have any eggs - so she knew that I have male/lesbian energy.

(PS I am not lesbian. I am grateful for working with this dream because it reconnects me to the excitement and beauty of sexual attraction, acting on it-pleasure that is not stopped by the male, analytical, judgmental side - but in this case provides enough braking to make it safe. I would go back into the dream and re-dream it to work through the tensions, or to clarify them. In my re-dream I would tell Mel that I needed a private place to explore our relationship.)
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From: Yellow Sail
Date: Fri, 11 Feb 2000

Hi Angela and fellow dreamers.
Thanks for this dream Angela. Here's if it were my dream:

In my dream, I'm being nudged to start maybe actual work but definitely inner work in a different way. I'm being invited to get more in touch with my 'sordid' reality. Because my whole self involves every single part of me.

On this day, I go to talk to Mel. In my dream, I'm really struck that Mel spells very like "me". So on this day, I go to talk with me.

Now there are still other aspects of myself about the place too, some of them looking tired and dopey, maybe half looking.

This black part of me and my dream ego talk. We get closer. I think, Maybe today will be the day.

Maybe today will be the day that I can connect with this black part of me. The part of me that I have come up close to today represents a free part of myself, a less conventional part of myself. A free spirit. The part of me who is true to who she is. The part of me who goes with the flow. She is a free part of myself because she's not worried by what others think of her. She is in touch with her passion. She will not be swayed from connecting with me or with others by the gallery's laughter or disapproval.

She tugs on me a little. Mel is suggesting we integrate a bit more. We are as close as we can get. Nice stuff this. The inside coming out. We kiss on the face. But, I'm scared and it doesn't feel good, kissing this black part of me. My sense is it doesn't feel good&yet. But it might never feel good. My sense is it will get better or should get better. But what is my basis for this belief? Maybe I need to attend to that feeling that it does not feel good. Period. And maybe it won't feel good, ever. Maybe this dream is not about lesbianism or bisexuality at all. Even the kissing on the face didn't feel good.

And I'm afraid this will get out of control so I open my eyes and say, "Don't you dare kiss me on the lips."

She smiles and opens her eyes and says, "Why not?" Mel who represents this vital, free, passionate, daring aspect of myself asks 'why not?' The aspect of myself that she represents is at peace. She is not offended. She doesn't take my rejection personally. She seeks the objective truth.

We lie on the couch. I'm struck that lie can also mean untruth. Maybe I'm being untruthful by looking around at the other people, anxious by what they see or judge rather than being true to myself regardless of other people's views. The two men look asleep but one opens his eyes halfway and closes them. It's possible he is pretending to be asleep. Equally, I'm pretending, trying to contain this encounter with the black, passionate part of me. The others don't look like they are paying attention to us.

I answer, "Because nobody knows I'm whatever it's called." In my dream, while this may also be about bisexuality or lesbianism or sexual ambiguity, it need not be that or only be that. In fact, in my dream, I suspect the deeper meaner might be something more like "lonely" or "afraid" or cocooned from that passionate, free part of me.

OK I don't want to kiss the part of me Mel represents but I put my hand under her. Maybe I'm trying to contain her or pat her on the bottom like you would a child. We lie there. And there's that lie word again. I wonder how she knows. But what do I think she knows? No one beyond myself knows me better than myself. I cannot give anyone else the power to determine decisions, even decisions about myself. That power belongs to me. But I nevertheless ask her "How do you know? Is it the way I look, or dress, or what?" But Mel, representing a vital hidden, free and true-to-self part of me says: "Oh, the other day you mentioned not having any eggs and so had to order some."

In my dream, I'm saddened that my sense of myself is of somehow being less than fully female. I picture the shipment I had gotten and wonder how that is evidence. But evidence of what?

Thanks for sharing this dream, Angela
Peace,
Yellow Sail

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Dreamer's Responses to Comments

From: Angela
Date: Mon, 07 Feb 2000

Dear "an elemental," Spiritplum, Klaatu, Mimi
I want each of you to know... I don't even know how to express this... I want all of you to know I have read your comments on this dream, Mel, and I am anxious to respond in great detail to each of you individually. This will take a couple of days. (As you know, Yellow Sail wore me out re-writing the dictionary. --He knows I'm just kidding, right? Luv ya Yellow Sail.) My immediate reaction to what you all have said so far is to know I am blessed to have you all as partners on this journey of discovery. I feel like I've placed my dream in the arms of angels. Thank you from the bottom of my heart. --
Okay, enough mush. It just slipped out. But I mean it!

Take care,
Angela

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From: Angela
Date: Tue, 15 Feb 2000

Dear "an elemental," Spiritplum, Klaatu, Mimi, Spirit Walker, Yellow Sail,
Where do I start? I read your comments on this dream knowing they are Yours but as I read, I fall into them and it is as if they are mine. I'm telling you, putting this dream into your hands was the best way I could possibly have honored this dream!!! Sends chills! For the record, I have been deeply touched and I honor you all for your work. And I've got to tell you what it's been like at work while working on this dream. Starting just two weeks ago, three days after this dream became the focus dream here, I began filling in in another position and I work with Mel for five hours a day. I find myself standing a little nearer than normal. I look at her, and consciously for the first time, notice what about her I'd like to nurture in myself. Just today I was headed in the same direction as she was, coincidentally (or not) needed to make the same turns around some equipment. She turned and said, "Are you following me?" I said no, but in my head I heard the song, "Me, and my shadow, strolling down the avenue..." I chuckled inside.

To Spiritplum,
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First you speak of being torn between this dream being an expression of repressed sexuality and a reflection of desire to open up to something dark and loving and different within myself. It is because I wasn't torn, because is all I saw this dream expressing was repressed sexual desire, is why I gave this dream to you. I knew there was more, but because of the shock of it all, I couldn't find anything else on my own.

I loved following your thought process as I read your comments. When you wrote, "Of course! A new life, a new creation that is the offspring of both of us," I felt the same 'aha' your exclamation point seemed to be expressing. I see this creation of new life as meaning the integration of parts of my ego and alter ego/shadow. The new life would be me. A changed me. (My dreams, and even yours, have been showing me this happening for a long time.) You even mention that the dream image of Mel is quite my self's opposite. That plus, "in the dark and hidden away," and "waiting quiet in the shadows." and, "[Mel] is not as accepted by others..." That's the stuff of our Shadow -- Things not accepted and so repressed.

The most enlightening point you made, and that I'm very thankful for, is, "What's more: she *wants* to be with me..." This aspect of my shadow wants to be with me (emphasis on 'wants' and 'with'). Not be me, or take me over, but be with me. That sounds like such a gentle, honest and caring way for my unconscious to treat me. Not a demand or hostile take over. Much more acceptable this way. I like that. It's not so scary anymore. I wouldn't have noticed this without you.

My conclusion to what you say is, Yes, I am looking forward to becoming a little more like Mel. As you say, "I really do want to continue this." (I wish I could explain here how I have.) I'm glad you are still in this cart.

To "an elemental",
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Does this dream really touch a chord within you? While reading what you wrote, I found your words touched a chord within me.

I find myself almost bursting with anticipation when I read your opening and closing together. "I want and hope to be whatever I really am." and, "What would happen if I let go my fears and was just myself: defect and all?" and "I'd find the real word for whatever I am." In those words I see 1) a goal, 2) a way to achieve it, and 3) the reward for working toward it. I'd find the real word for whatever I am. That last sentence is poetry.

I know you stayed focused on the non-sexual meaning of this dream. That is what I needed help with. "Hiding my desires" "hoping that others read my desires." For me this reminds me of the self sabotage I'm so good at. Because of not expressing my desires, because of hoping others will know them, I've shot myself in the foot on many occasions. This brings to mind "The Artist's Way," by Julia Cameron. (I think you would like it if you haven't done it already. It's a book that is actually a 10 week 'course'. It made me aware of my internal censor and how harmful it can be.)

Another thought of yours that I will give attention to is, "I think my desire is to love unconditionally, freely and totally (and here I am NOT thinking of sexual love)." Also, "Is this my secret: that I can't love unconditionally?" This made me aware my desire is to love myself unconditionally and freely, and it has been my secret--It's been a secret to me. I'm still a little stuck here because I can't imagine being able to do this. At least I'm going to admit it does sound a healthy thing to do.

I wrote to you in an answer to a question, "I wish I could draw you a picture." Your words have drawn a bigger picture of what this dream may mean for me.

To Klaatu,
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May I first say, thank you for stretching.

The minute I read, "The boss part of me..." I had an aha. I never thought of having a boss part. It's nice to know I do. I really would be much more productive in life, as you say, if the different parts of me got to know each other better. I've know for some time now that there are these other parts. I'm glad the boss part knows what is good for me as a whole and requires me to socialize with the others. I would not / do not on my own.

As you noticed, in this dream, I am put in a room by the boss and if I am to communicate at all, it is with Mel; the most different part, for the others are asleep for now. Your words, "I want to demonstrate acceptance of this different part of me," reminds me that I do want to. This I am saying only now, after reading your comments and many weeks after this dream.
Klaatu, I want you to know, right now as I write this, I can really feel that I want to accept this different part of me. It feels really good. I am getting more comfortable with the fact that I'm attracted to her (this different part). I feel better.

"To me this dream seems to be about self-exploration, about learning about myself, even parts of myself I hadn't recognized until now, because they seem so different from what I conventionally regarded as "me." .... Maybe if I get to know all these other parts.... I ll find other surprises.

This dream has made me do a lot of "self-exploration." I've learned some new things about myself that I hadn't recognized until now because your right, they have always been there but because they seemed so different, without even realizing it, I rejected them. I'm glad the boss ordered this socialization time. I wonder if I will find some other surprises. Thank you for noticing this in the dream.

To Mimi
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Inner work.

I find it very interesting that you notice the dream is set in a room where "we gather in preparation for work." If I apply your comments to my life, I see this dream as preparing me for the inner work to come. Like this dream is practice for, as opposed to being the work. (This has more meaning than you know being that this dream was given to me mid-December, and I have had a growth spurt, so to speak, of inner work since then.) This inner work has to do with recognizing, understanding and accepting certain feelings. I usually see going with my feelings as scary, even very wrong. Maybe the sleeping men/reason are there as a security blanket and reminder to check in with reasonableness, but reasonableness (thinking) should give feeling its say. Well, it did, and now I'm thinking about it.

You saw the table as a barrier. For me this is a barrier between the me I know and what Mel represents to me/the qualities I wish I had and/or, even literally, lesbian or bisexual tendencies within me. Yes, this dream s literal layer is relevant to me. You noted, "'Don't you dare kiss me on the lips' could indicate that I am not yet ready to speak out about this...". At the time of the dream I was not. (I guess pretending to be asleep about it is a good way to describe it.) Since the dream I have, but am not yet comfortable, in the dream and in waking life, with 'this'. (I still can't apply the name.) With the connection you made between the couch and a psychiatrist's couch and the need to look at this with my thinking mind shows me that although I acknowledged feelings that are new (the accepting of them is new), there is still work to be done about them. You write, ... "if I can better understand [these feelings] it may become more acceptable to my reasonable self." I hope this is true.

Mimi, if this dream really did hit on your issues, whatever they may be, I wish you all the best in honoring your feelings and intuition about them. As for me, some ritual of initiation isn't something I can consider.

Did you notice that in your interpretation of this dream you spoke of all 'four windows'? That s so cool. This says to me you are well balanced.

To Spirit Walker
----------------
You went right for the literal meaning in this dream. This is what I was so scared of when I woke from the dream. Denied it. Tried not to think about it. Knew I'd never share this dream. Pretended I never had it. Tried to convince myself this dream had no literal meaning whatsoever. It is hard to consider a meaning like this, even in the privacy of the space between my own ears. But, even with all the resistance I was putting up, something drew me to offer this dream here. Thank you for offering the literal meaning as a valid one, with no condemnation. What else can I say? I'm glad you saw beauty in it. And welcome.

To Yellow Sail,
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Evidence of what?

May I borrow your words and thoughts and see where it goes?

Are you hitting me with something hard? That's okay, it's just not my favorite thing to do. My sordid reality. "I'm being invited to get more in touch with my 'sordid' reality." I hope the quote marks mean this reality is only sordid to me and not the true meaning of sordid. Like compared to the rest of who I am it is sordid, but really not that awful. Another piece of evidence that leads me to believe this is the case is you describe Mel (me) as a free part of myself, a free spirit, not worried by what others think, in touch with her passion, vital, daring, at peace... All these things, although not like the me I know, are not bad sordid qualities. Also, whoever is the giver of dreams would not nudge me to integrate parts of myself that were so bad. So I'm going to go with that meaning.

I guess another thing I don't want to do is look around this room for other aspects of myself, "some of them looking tired and dopey, maybe half looking." I think here also of the dirtiness of the room, the used furniture. I'd rather not admit those could be aspects of myself.

"Maybe this dream is not about lesbianism or bisexuality at all. Even the kissing on the face didn't feel good."... "Maybe I need to attend to that feeling that it does not feel good. Period." Okay, I can do this. Maybe this is a warning that I just think I'm attracted to these qualities but if I actually act on it, even if it does feel good, it won't be worth the consequences of integrating 'sordid' things.

"She tugs on me a little. Mel is suggesting we integrate a bit more. Nice stuff this." This is my favorite sentence. Maybe this is what I should do. Integrate her characteristics, but only a bit.

... "I suspect the deeper meaning might be something more like 'lonely' or 'afraid' or cocooned from that passionate, free part of me." Humm. I probably am, but I think it is appropriate to cocoon myself from the free part of me. Yes, integrate, but just a bit. This sounds appropriate.

So, evidence of what? Evidence that I am not whole yet. More work to do here. (Of course there always is)

Yellow Sail, I very much appreciate this slightly harder look at this dream. You keep me from being so insistant.

To All, (if you have read this far),
The words that tie, I think, all your interpretations of this dream together are: Mel/ melt, meld, me, merge, new creation, integrate (a bit), incorporate. That's the part that feels the same. Yet all the interpretations actually were all quite different. Thank you all again.

I have been working hard on this dream myself. I saw evidence of that in a dream I had last night. It basically was a scary dream, and in it I worried someone would find my dream, Mel, and all the work done on it by [the group]. At one point I collected all my notebooks and was about to put them in a drawer when I thought, "I can't just stuff this in a drawer!" I believe a meaning for this dream could be that this dream and all your work on it is very precious to me. And, although this Internet is not a private place, giving this dream to you feels safe to me.

Take care,
Angela