Early this morning I had a fascinating dream. It was in two parts. First, I was cooking a fish finger for my son’s dinner. On examination it wasn’t cooked properly as the centre of the finger was brimming with blood. I told my son that it wasn’t ready and needed to go in the oven longer. My son went ballistic, picked up the keyboard attached to my laptop and threw it down a flight of stairs. As I picked it up I thought to myself ‘This is PTSD from parenting.’
The second part of the dream was very different. I was in some kind of building and there was a sense of urgency. Someone told me that I had to come this way. A flight of stairs was ahead of me. Instead of walking up, I forced myself to elevate higher and higher, until I reached the top. A balcony was in front of me, hundreds of people gathered below. I held a white coloured grenade in my hand. As I threw it into the crowd, one person looked up and saw me. I found myself at the bottom of the stairs again. I thought to myself ‘there will be an explosion and I’m going to wake up and find myself in it.’
At this point I woke up, thankfully to the silence of my bedroom.
I believe this dream is significant but I haven’t yet figured out exactly how. While the two parts are different, there are obvious parallels and themes. In the first, my son throws something (a laptop) DOWN the stairs; in the second I throw something (a grenade) after going UP the stairs. In both, there is a massive disturbance, but in the first I am not in control, whereas in the second I am the cause.
The fish is also very interesting. Fish in dreams tend to symbolise the unconscious, the giver of life, since they live in the ocean from which we came. As such fish can also symbolise the true self, or the Christ. If I consider the latter, the blood takes on even greater significance. It symbolises my wounded self. The dream mentions PTSD, the effect of coping for many years with my son’s tendency to throw items and furniture with little or no warning, exactly as portrayed here, and the screaming at all hours of the day and night, sometimes the violence. My son could be absolutely lovely, but he was unpredictable, and sadly my ill health suffered further. Here, I am serving up a well intentioned but wounded self to my son. Unsurprisingly, he rejected it. Maybe, too, this is about me ‘pointing the finger’ akas assigning blame to the situation and seeing myself as a victim of it. A bloodied finger is a particularly gruesome image, since our fingers are an essential part of our anatomy; we need them to communicate, hold, throw.
And then we have part two, when I seemingly decide to bomb an entire room. Seen on one level, it could be about anger and revenge, but I don’t FEEL it’s that. Instead, there is a sense of higher purpose and understanding. I am elevating to a new level. I can see chaos already below but there is something I have to do. The grenade has its own meaning. It is white, the colour of purity and spirit. As I throw it, someone below sees me and understands what I’m doing. Part of my personality is awake. I am then back downstairs, knowing more chaos will ensue and I will come to be in the midst of it, but who I am in THAT moment – the spiritual self, the soul – is detached yet deeply involved, separate yet witnessing everything. Other aspects of my personality need a stronger wake up call. That’s what the grenade is about.
I don’t know if the second part of the dream explains the first. Maybe it does, maybe it doesn’t. But I feel, deep down, that they are saying all of it makes sense. I have felt more at peace around my son and the way he is for a little while but I know from past experience that my unconscious will roam around to find exactly what is still festering there and make me very aware of it. And of course, it is a process; the pain probably won’t ever go away completely, but as with any life experience, we can awaken through it.