Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Poor Kitty


I am living in some kind of skinny house like a trailer that is up off the ground. I'm in the house cooking and it is so crowded with furniture and boxes that I can hardly get around inside of it. There is a knock at the door. As I approach the window to the outside world, I realize it has been a long time since I've seen my cat. 

It is raining as I look out the door to see who is at my house. I can hardly get to the door because of all the furniture and boxes. I finally open the door and start looking for kitty. I find him underneath the house. He has been skinned almost to the bone. He is gooey with mucus and blood, but I convince myself that he is just wet from the rain.

I pull him out from under the house and hold his limp, gooey body in my arms. All at once I realize it was my boyfriend who skinned my poor kitty. The cat looks up at me and I feel hopeful that he can be nursed back to health, but I am afraid to try. Even though I know how much he wants to live, I am also aware of the incredible pain he is in. I cannot decide whether I will nurse him back to health or put him back under the house to die in peace.


Understand that this dream was years before I sought my first therapist. Clearly my kitty is a representation of wounded me. I knew I was broken, I knew I needed help. I just didn't know how or where to get it. The student was not ready.

This dream was hard for me to write about today. My arms and chest are heavy, my telltale sign for impending dissociative escape. I am fighting to stay present. Breathe, feel, stay in. That's what I tell myself now when this happens.

The cat in my dream just recently died. I had him for 17 years and I loved him dearly. Indeed it was a gruesome death as he was attacked by neighborhood dogs. Just two weeks ago I carried his limp, gooey body to the vet to have him euthanized. On top of this, I have oft used the comparison of a butterfly to my past year of transformation. Just recently in my birthday post called The Prophecy I refer to myself as the caterpillar inside the cocoon who has melted into primordial goo. The poignance of this metaphor could not be any more real than it is today in recapping my dream.

The good news is, I am nursing myself back to health. I do want to live, and not just survive. I am determined to build myself back up, no, to transform into something better not in spite of but because of my pain. Post-Traumatic Growth is not only possible, but probable for me. I am already experiencing it.

My pain today is not only because of the near prediction of my cat's untimely death. My grief is more for the young version of me who did not know what was ailing her. Whose pain was so deeply buried it could only come out in the form of gruesome dreams. Now that I am fully in touch with self-compassion, I look back at the years of my life spent in pain and confusion with great sorrow. I was so lost, so wounded, so alone.

I am eternally grateful that I am now on a different path, one of healing and thriving. I can only move forward on the path; too much has been revealed and there is no turning back. I will be healthy, I will be whole. The universe is providing precisely what I need to make this happen.

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