Saturday, April 22, 2006

Haunted, terrifying dream -- An American Haunting in my dreams

Gotta get this out of my system, ASAP.

Let me preface by saying I was able to see "An American Haunting" at the Nashville Film Festival opening night, which was April 20. This is a film about the Bell Witch, which is the only seriously documented haunting in American history. There are plenty of websites about this event and this film if you're interested in more info, as well as quite a few books.

About the movie: it scared the shit out of me. It was not bloody or gory -- just plain Hitchcock-type petrifying. I have to say it was an excellent movie, but I also have to say that, even hours after the film was over, my heart was still pounding. My hubby and I once tried to visit the house and cave which are part of the story, but got kind of pissed off at the guy selling thickest to it. We tried to ask a couple of questions - his response was always "buy the tickets if you want to know". We'd planned to buy the tickets anyway -- just wanted more clarification as to what we were actually buying.

Members of the Bell family were present at this screening, and said they thought it was very well done, despite the very difficult subject matter. They felt it was handled very well, and appreciated what the filmmaker (Courtney Solomon) did to research the facts. This said volumes to me..>

This dream begins with some sort of party I'm having somewhere, not in my own house, but in something like a traditional church building. I have lied to my parents about someone's death (feels like it was my husband Lance's death, but he had nothing to do with this dream -- I'm just saying that's what it felt like), and am in the midst of a party. My parents and brother show up, though, very concerned and sad and wanting to help me out. My parents give me checks to help me with expenses, and I make some excuse to get them to go to their hotel room, so I can have time to figure out what to do about this giant, horrible lie I've told.

I talk with my friends and decide to tell them I gave "whoever" their checks, and they all tore them up, doing THEM a favor. My parents were so relieved when I told them, as they really didn't have this money to give. I assure them somehow, after being "appropriately" sad and in mourning that they can go home, that I'm going to be fine with my friends.

One of the friends is either a gay man or someone whom I've only thought of as a friend. I go with him to his house to do something, and as we spend time together, it's obvious that he's realizing that he loves me, and I also realize that I love him. We begin to have an intimate, beautiful physical experience, but in the midst or afterwards, we learn that someone we both loved has died. The other friends of this friend of ours are having a wake/memorial service for her, but she is either a pagan or a witch. We dress in costume or dress appropriately to fit in with this crowd, and walk down the street to the site of the gathering.

All kinds of people pass us on the way -- some driving souped up cars, some on motorcycles, some flying through the air as you've been shown on TV shows or in films that witches are able to do. We get to the home where the gathering is, and my new love is just so very sad. I ache for him. People are all milling about, in various stages of grief, and there is a room containing her things that she's left to people, or that she wants people to pick out for themselves. I look for a particular pair of shoes of hers that I liked very much, but could not find them. Others were making selections or finding things particularly set aside for them. I was disappointed nothing was particularly set aside for me. Another item in this room is a box with her ashes, which we're all supposed to take a little bit of to spread wherever we wish -- she wanted us all to do this in order to spread her spirit as far and wide as possible. I couldn't do this, however, because I can't face a box of ashes that used to be a person's body. (Side note: I do have to spread Lance's ashes at a particular place that is far from me, eventually. It's hard to get to where this place is, and I've always wondered how I will react when I actually see what's inside the container of his remains.)

There is some kind of black animal there -- something like a cross between a cat, a porcupine, and a badger. When it got near me, it began to growl, which it has not done to the other guests. This is not a good sign usually, the people say, but they can't understand why it would react that way to me. In a flash it's attacking my face, clawing at my eye or maybe biting. They pull it off and I am very very afraid.

My lover and I leave this party, and the next thing I realize is that something dark and cloud-like is flying down the road toward us and consumes both my lover and me in fire and pain. We die. But I "wake up" as me in different place and time -- one time it was downtown San Francisco in the early 1900s, one time it was on an old wooden ship, one time it was in a current-day empty warehouse, one time with was with my real life friend Karen in a mall. Each time I would somehow encounter my lover, in a different body, but always the same spirit/soul, just like me. We knew each other by our souls, and our love would grow. But each time, someone would take on the role of the demon thing, and betray, then consume us.

Eventually, there was a knight in black armor, on a black horse, with black hair and beard, with a black crossbow that would show up and shoot the demon at the last minute, sparing my lover and me. We were so relieved and grateful for this, and each time we tried to move on to a different place, to escape the remnants of the demon. But each time we moved, we discovered that the demon would deceive us and part of it, even a miniscule part of it, would hide in something we had with us -- a box, a person, a door -- and we'd be imperiled again. The black knight saved us several times. The last time was driving up the curvy, rocky hills near my real-life home.

The last vignette of this dream is what caused me to shout No! No! No! over and over, and out loud so that my husband awakened me. For a while I couldn't even tell him what was wrong, I was so shaken. My mouth was so dry, and yet I was crying. Eventually I was convinced that I needed to write (type) this down in order to get it out of my head. Here's the last scene:

It's the mid to late 1800s, and my lover and I, thinking we're finally free of the demon. We are on our way to our new home, which is an empty log cabin on a prairie, near some woods. We enter our new home, which has a built in butler's pantry in the kitchen area, a black iron kettle hanging in the fireplace, and that's about it. We are so happy, so relieved -- we are finally free. As we embrace, someone opens the door. It's a man of about 25 or so, clearly up to no good. We see out the windows he has a couple of compatriots. They say this is their house, though it truly isn't. We try to reason with them -- they are not cooperative. They come in the house and grab me, as well as subduing my lover. They drag me outside, where they intend to rape me in front of him, then burn him alive, then me, too. Two men are holding me down, one is holding my lover, who is fighting to get away, as am I. I keep hoping the black knight will come, but so far he hasn't shown up. The one on the right is pulling my legs apart, raising my dress. The one on the left is holding me down, slavering, laughing, enjoying my terror. Someone kills the one on the right, though I can't tell who. I do realize it's not the black knight, though, and then understand that it's yet another "bad guy" who wants his turn. My lover is screaming at them to let me go, not to hurt me, etc, but they laugh and hold him back more painfully. I begin to scream and thrash about, "No! No! No! No! No!", whimpering as well.

This is when hubby woke me up. I couldn't tell him what was wrong for about 5 minutes. I was very hot & sweaty, and extremely thirsty. I went to the bathroom and cried. I came back to bed, and drank some of the water hubby had brought me, and then told him everything. He suggested I blog it, which I just did.

Now I pray this is out of my mind for good, and yes, I'm taking it to my therapist Monday. Hopefully, I'll be able to make other posts this weekend that won't be quite so awful. PLEASE wish me peace -- I surely need it.


1 comment:

RunAwayImagination said...

I think some of your dream is an echo of the movie, especially the part about you being threatened with rape. That happened in the movie. The time period of your dream, is the same historical period in which the Bell Witch legend happened.

The earlier part of your dream sounds like it contains some "real life" feelings you have about spreading Lance's ashes. And woven into that story may be thoughts you had about going through stuff for the recent yard sale, because some of the things we gave away were Nancy's. Of course you know she would have been the first to tell us to give her things away if we couldn't use them.

And somehow I'm thinking that the part where you are looking for things set out specifically for you might have somehow represented the fact that Nancy couldn't have done this - although I know she would have done it, and with great joy, if she could have foreseen you coming into my life and giving me such joy and peace after her untimely demise.

And remember we did do a good bit of searching through shoes, looking for matching pairs.

I don't know what the black animal that attacked you meant, unless it was a carryover from frightening wolves in the movie.

The gay lover - hard to know what he might have symbolized. But since you met him many times in many forms, perhaps this somehow symbolizes or represents how you met love in two very different people - Lance and me. Although we are different men, the love in your heart is how you meet us. And there is something undying about love. You and I both know that, because after losing our former spouses, we still nourish those undying embers, and those embers somehow warm our hearts to this day. So maybe the message in that segment is that love conquers all. All love is the same love, even though it may take different forms and exist in different places.

I hope this makes sense.