my friend's young son went over the cliff first. the inexorable drag of the tipping took me and i was over the edge, too. the rocks below, and ocean. seeing in a moment us dashed against the rocks, dread in the pit of the belly wondering how that could possibly feel, and the ones who loved us broken helpless watching from the wide green lawn. everything moving glacial in the body and lightspeed in the mind. i simply resolved: NO. one hand forward and i was steady holding green grass that spilled down over the cliff's edge. the other hand out behind me insisting that the child was there, and he was, and i pulled, and we came up over the edge, grinning, into the arms of his parents my husband the world of the living.
all my life i've had falling dreams. last night i didn't know i was dreaming; it wasn't a lucid dream. but i recognized the place; the height, the bottom, the people watching me fall. when i was a little girl i fell down a thousand manholes. i remember seeing my father look helplessly down over the edge, the light so high up. i couldn't walk over manholes or grating in the streets with ease until well into my third decade. i didn't know all this in the dream, but i knew: no, not this, not here, not this again. i knew i wasn't going to die; i never land. but i simply refused the dread, the whole show. and i climbed out. i climbed out!
i've been reading tibetan dream yoga. one of the foundational practices is to tell yourself in the everyday waking that it's all a dream. whew. and yet after finding myself grow stony and put the book down after reading that, a few days later i was walking down the street in the sun, past the fruit in baskets outside the corner store and i thought with bliss, oh, yes, this *is* a dream.
but the dream turn, oh, oh! what a wonder!