Dream: I’m standing out on a ledge. I am so scared. I am holding on but I could fall. There’s an important event going on near me. President Obama is there. He is standing so close to me. If I could just get the courage to interrupt him and ask him to help me, maybe he could save me. It feels like a life or death situation. Even so, I feel hesitant to bother him. He is so important and all. I stand there for the longest time, feeling like I am going to fall any minute. It is so scary. Finally I get up the courage to get his attention. I have to speak loudly for him to hear me. I say, “Can you help me? I am stuck over here.” He immediately stops what he is doing, reaches over, grabs me and saves me. Thank God!
As I read this dream aloud I stop when I get to the part that says, “If I could just get the courage to interrupt him…..” I stop because I am starting to cry. This is unusual for me. Usually I can hold it together, but there is something there that breaks through. The feelings that are coming up surprise me. Rodger asks if “getting the courage to interrupt” and the feelings it brings up are familiar to me.
When I had this dream, it was the fear that I felt. It felt as if I were really on a ledge about to fall. That “life or death” fear helped me to find the courage to break a long held pattern of not speaking up. But in the dream session it wasn’t as much the fear I felt, but sadness. The sadness came from somewhere deep inside – through a crack that the dream had opened up. As I reflect on it now, the sadness comes back again. The sadness seems to be coming from my soul self; that part of me that is feels sadness that I’ve spent so many years lacking the courage to speak up.
Being out on that ledge is pushing me to my edge. Rodger suggests that this dream is an important one for me and shows that I am “on the edge of my work.” It shows that I am willing to speak up and that I can connect and get help from the animus (President Obama is the animus in this dream). I have a life or death choice. I can choose to be the girl and speak up (life) or to succumb to the pathology by numbing out, staying quiet and somehow muddling through (death). I am on that edge and I choose to be vulnerable. And with that choice, I can be the girl who gets to be with the animus.