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New Dreams for Old
Dedicated to Doug
Submitted by Helen
When I was a little girl, I used to have dreams about finding new and surprising rooms in old and familiar houses. Padding about my family house in bare feet and cotton nightie, I would come across a door where there had been only a stretch of blank hallway. Filled with intoxicating curiosity, I would open that unfamiliar door to find rooms, even whole suites of rooms, waiting to be explored. A psychologist friend of mine told me later, that these dreams arise out of personal growth, that they symbolize finding new aspects of self, that they are the dreams of youth and unbounded optimism.
Whatever they meant, I loved those dreams. In my daylight time, I was always a little sad that real houses were finite and constrained by the laws of geometry and logic. I always hoped that someday I would really find a magical door that I could step through to find places I had never seen, places I had never even imagined. But I grew up and I grew older, and even my dreams became smaller, more predictable, hedged in by the walls of everyday life, and time.
And then, at an advanced age, an age when most people agree I should know better, I fell in love. Deeply, sweetly and deliriously in love. My life changed. Oh, I still look the same on the outside, it is how I see things from inside that is different.
Before I fell in love, it seemed as though the end of my life was going to be a smaller and smaller place. As mortality grew closer, so would the walls around me. One wall of infirmity, another wall of inertia, a third wall of sad remembrance for days gone by and the final wall of unbearable loneliness.
Now, in my soul, in my self, there are no walls or doors. Instead there is new land. Now, when I dream, I dream of new islands, risen from the depths of the sea. I dream of high land, born of deep underwater volcanos. I dream of magical vistas of light and shade; of moonlight and sun- where he and I explore this new world together.
Now that I am in love, I dream of a new Hawaii, where the only boundaries are the endless sea and the blue horizon. And my dream goes on forever.