This week I had a remarkable dream. It was 1992 and I was standing in front of my girlfriend, and we were arguing.
…there were several times while we dated where I could barely scrape together the $1.50 in bus fare to get to her place in Blackburn Hamlet. So, after the movie or dinner or whatever, Mary would either drive me home, or give me some change for the ride back.
But occasionally we would get into an argument over something fairly stupid, and I’d leave. I’d get halfway to the bus stop before realizing I had no way to pay for a bus ride, so I’d have to go back, knock on her door and ask her for change.
There was one occasion where we actually broke up (over three years there were a few break ups) when she admitted to me she had cheated with a school friend — a driveway blowjob in his Camaro. I told her it was over and left. A few minutes later I had to knock on her door and ask for change. It was something like a ten or twelve mile walk back to my place, and it was late. I don’t think I had a choice.
So… anyway, in my dream Mary and I are arguing in the front hall of her parents’ home, and I leave. I think, in my dream, we argued about ten different things at once.
And I left. And it’s a bright day even though it was just night. I make it to the end of the block before I turn around and walk back, only this time I enter without knocking and she’s still standing there… and I apologize to her.
I apologize to her, and I reach out and hug her, and I hold her incredible bum, then I look her in the face and promise to be better. I promise that I won’t spend three years not looking for work, I promise I won’t be a disappointment.
I tell her I’ll walk into every business, every store, every bar and tell whomever that I’m ready and able to work. And I’ll tell them all that I’m looking for work because I want my girlfriend to be proud of me.
To be proud of us.
It was so good, so hopeful, it was exactly what I should have done eighteen years ago, what I might have done with a mind clear of the manic depression. There was a lot of light.
I was so happy to have a plan, in the dream I watched myself happy, walking, skipping down Rideau Street from Charlotte to Sussex Drive, and everything was so bright, and I applied for work at every door. And when I woke up I was so happy.
I don’t keep track of my dreams. But this one was just so real. And the message was just too obvious.
I’ve wasted so many opportunities. But, fuck, I still need more of them.
Mary and I dated while I was in the early stages of living with manic depression. Recently two women I’ve dated and cared for contacted me out of the blue… both of whom I lost because I was still in the early stages of my recovery. So it’s understandable that I’d have the dream now.
It’s also understandable because at the moment I can’t support my son, or my girlfriend. And there are no changes coming anytime soon.
Things are going so badly this month my girlfriend brought me three prepared meals in little Tupperware containers, and has offered to buy me milk using her baby-bonus cheque… I’ve said stop, and no, respectively.
But I am now, who I was then. It’s just the symptoms of the manic depression are gone, but I’m still left with the behaviours. Even if the behaviours — the sleeping, the short depressions, the other stuff — were stripped away, I have no idea what I could be doing now to support my family.
Basically, I just don’t know what I can do, or even what I’m capable of. Over the past few years I’ve alienated, or been alienated, by everyone I know. I have no contacts. There are no businesses in this tiny town where I could work doing anything. And I have no way of getting to any of the other tiny towns in this exceptionally rural county.
And I’ve got no ideas.
It was just such an incredibly positive dream, that left such a powerful feeling of… everything being just right. And Mary looked so happy.
Mary contacted me through Facebook in… August, I think. She “friended” me, then sent a message apologizing for how she treated me at the end. But, before I could respond, she sent another message “unfriending” me because her husband didn’t like the idea of ex-boyfriends in her friend list. Here’s where you ask why I’m not on Facebook anymore.