Thursday, December 11, 2008

Sad Dream.

I had a very, very sad dream at some point last night.  That's pretty unusual for me.  First, I don't regularly remember my dreams.  Second, my nighttime mental ramblings routinely fall into the "weird" category, with plots revolving around my being able to fly and back in high school, etc.  I can only remember one other dream that really, truly fits the "sad" bill, and in that one I died.

I didn't die in this one, thankfully.  In the dream, I had another daughter older than E. by a few years, which would make her seven or eight.  She was slightly overweight and I knew she wasn't the most popular girl in her class at school.  She came to me hesitantly while we were out at what I think was a bar or restaurant and asked if I could keep a secret.

I told her that I loved her; of course I'd keep a secret for my girl.  She nodded and quietly pulled her shirt up a little to show her tummy.  What I saw there threw me into a rage: there was a healing cut in the shape of a small "K" on her side.  I looked closer and it was surrounded by words and little pictures drawn and written in pencil.  They were notes, the sort of nonsense an eight year old would write on the back of a notebook or inside a bathroom stall.  My daughter had let herself become a sort of graffitti wall for her classmates in order to gain a little popularity, and one of them had even gone so far as to begin CUTTING HIS NAME into my little girl's stomach.

"Rage" is a very small word for the big, big emotion my dream-self felt.  I asked her who cut her, and she quietly replied "Kyle."  I nodded and not-so-quietly said that tomorrow, I was going to school with her, she would show me who Kyle was, and I would kill him.  I spent most of the rest of the dream hugging Dream Daughter, trying to find V., and verbally ranting that anyone who tried to cut their name into my little girl would meet a painful, terrifying end.

Sadly, I could see something like this happening in real life.  Kids are still pretty cruel, and while it's pretty tough to write on skin with a pencil, Sharpie makes tiny keychain markers that would work perfectly.  The idea of some unpopular child letting their classmates scrawl on them as a desperate attempt to be accepted makes me want to cry even now.  If you have children, let them know how excellent you think they are.  If you know friends that have kids, show those kids respect.  Don't ever make a child work for acceptance - simply accept them.  They are who they are, and your respect will only help them figure out just who that is.

(A note: I'm pretty sure my dream was influenced by a recent episode of House, MD.  The episode featured an overweight, unpopular girl, but one with a different problem.  My brain gets 3 out of 5 for originality.  Also, this morning I had a second dream in which I told my mom about the first dream over the phone.  That was a bit odd.)

Addendum: A brief discussion regarding this post, from Twitter:
KeviKev @thraeryn On the plus side your reaction in the dream was a healthy Protective Dad reaction.
@KeviKev Yeah, any dad would've done the same. "I'm gonna KILL that little shit!" is the Gold Standard of fatherly responses.

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