Thursday, May 22, 2008

We need Freud down here

The gnawing in the chest begins amidst utter darkness.

It's gentle at first, then fiercer and fiercer, like a ravenous rat. The pain level shoots up. Finally, there's a flash of light and the vicious nibbler is revealed... to be our son!

And that's about when his father wakes up from his bizarre dream, one that seems especially suited to half-baked coffeeshop psychoanalysis. Perhaps Pa fears that the child he must devote so much energy to will eventually turn around and betray him. Or, more implausibly, might he be haunted subconsciously by a sense of inferiority over being unable to breastfeed? The location of the gnawing might be instructive, after all, along with the way it grows in intensity, like that of a suckling child unable to draw milk.

This is rather fun, so let's consider Mum's dream too (yes, we both had dreams on the same day). In hers, she meets a lineup of young babies, some of whom are mysteriously mature and can even speak. She is drawn to one adorable orphan in particular. In short order, however, he starts work at a haberdasher's!

Surely, the 'orphan' is Sonny, the child whose fate is linked to Mum's - but who will, all too soon, grow up, get a job and move out of his parents' orbit. Why a haberdasher's? Perhaps Mum simply has a deeply-buried dislike of people selling bits of clothing.

All right, maybe a dream is sometimes just a dream. In any case, we don't think we're seen the last of these child-centred fantasies, if so you choose to term them. Guess when there's an addition to the family, even dreamtime is never quite the same again.