Two nights in a row now I've had dreams of a snake entering my room. I've read that this is spiritually auspicious (and not just in Eastern religions; Saint Ignatius had serpent visions all throughout his mystical experiences), but it doesn't make the snakes any less vivid or scary. I've been waking up sweating. Even worse, once I am awake, my mind has been two-timing me again, betraying me into a state of panic like I haven't felt since the worst of the divorce years. My thoughts keep flying back to my failed marriage, and to all the attendant shame and anger of that event. Worse, I'm again dwelling on David. I'm arguing with him in my mind, I'm mad and lonely and remembering every hurtful thing he ever said or did to me. Plus I can't stop thinking about all our happiness together, the thrilling delirium when times were good. It's all I can do not to jump out of this bed and call him from India in the middle of the night and just--I don't know what--just hang up on him, probably. Or beg him to love me again. Or read him such a ferocious indictment on all his character flaws.
Why is all this stuff coming up again now?
I know what they would say, all the old-timers at this Ashram. They would say this is perfectly normal, that everyone goes through this, that intense meditation brings everything up, that you're just clearing out all your residual demons . . . but I'm in such an emotional state I can't stand it and I don't want to hear anyone's hippie theories. I recognize that everything is coming up, thank you very much. Like vomit it's coming up. Somehow I manage to fall asleep again, lucky me, and I have another dream. No snakes this time, but a rangy, evil dog who chases me and says, "I will kill you. I will kill you and eat you!"
I wake up crying and shaking. I don't want to disturb my roommates, so I go hide in the bathroom. The bathroom, always the bathroom! Heaven help me, but there I am in a bathroom again, in the middle of the night again, weeping my heart out on the floor in loneliness. Oh, cold world--I have grown so weary of you and all your horrible bathrooms.
When the crying doesn't stop, I go get myself a notebook and a pen (last refuge of a scoundrel) and I sit once more beside the toilet. I open to a blank page and scrawl my now-familiar plea of desperation:
"I NEED YOUR HELP."
Then a long exhale of relief comes as, in my own handwriting, my own constant friend
(who is it?) commences loyally to my own rescue:
"I'm right here. It's OK. I love you. I will never leave you . . ."