This was not one of those dreams where the person wakes up in the middle of the night wiping the sweat from one’s forehead. This was not one of those dreams where the person wakes up just in time before the knife plunges into one’s chest. This was not one of those dreams where the car moves just in time before a train smashes into it, or the wife senses something wrong and dodges her husband’s attempt to shove her from the cliff. This was one of those dreams where it matters more on what day it is and how the events of the day factored into the sleep patterns of the person.
A woman named Delilah had been waking up every hour on the hour for a few minutes at a time the past few weeks. She was not certain what had triggered her eyes to flutter and stay open. She only heard the normal ambient noise one hears at night once fully awake. She managed to close her eyes before the thoughts of days past flooded her conscience, and before long she was asleep and moving back into her dream.
Her dreams, this week, allowed her a bit of solace throughout the night. She was able to rest without her sleep being disrupted for a few days. It came to a halt on a Wednesday. The dream was nothing out of the ordinary. There was no reason to have alarm, but some women fear the cliché. A man in a black trench coat, sporting a felt hat with a tan ribbon wrapped around it, and wearing sunglasses even during nightfall may look threatening at first glance, but that stranger often becomes a friend after the initial greeting and introductory handshake. Different styled men go about their lives without wanting to harm women, and nothing evil is in their facial expressions. There was nothing to be feared among these men in Delilah’s mindset. Many men had followed her in the past, in her days as a prostitute. It seems most men wanted a free handout if they could get it.
On the other hand, the man who averted his eyes when Delilah spotted him across the street sent tingles to the base of her neck, down her arms, where it entered into each finger and expelled at the tips. He held one commonality with other dangerous men of her past, and that was the urge to fulfill his desire. The butterfly excitement they felt did not differ from this man. His taut belly had the capacity to hold as many fluttering wings as possible. She maneuvered through the crowd, and at certain points she had no choice but to elbow those that did not move after her initial insistence. She feared she knew this man, and soon felt his presence close by.
A second of time turned into two seconds and two more turned into four as the crowd seemed to hold her back. It took him a short span to be in arm’s length away from her long ponytail. His hand moved effortlessly and grabbed her wrist, instead. He forced her body close to his. She tried, unsuccessfully, to dig her fingernails deep into his flesh. She thought. He must’ve done this before. He’s quick about what he’s doing. She looked down and glimpsed the long scars on his hands. He used her arm for leverage and forced her through the crowd. His other hand pressed menacingly against her back.
When she opened her mouth, her sound drowned in the laughter and screams of nearby children. Each passing moment her opportunities to escape dwindled. Before the throng of people seemed to hold her back, but now they moved out of the way for him. Crisscrossed arms spread apart to let him pass. Life hardly ever worked in her favor, much as it had been as a little girl, when she was told her body was for sacrifice. Her mother neglected this truth to her, and had to learn about it firsthand. When she was thrown her on top of the small table, her father imparted the answer with condescension each time. This duty was expected of her more frequent as years passed.
The point when her dream twisted into a nightmare was when the man shoved her into his apartment. Her knees landed on the chill of the linoleum floor with a thud, the cold seeping through her thin cotton pants. He decided this was not suitable anymore and yanked her by the ponytail. She had no choice, but to follow him into his bedroom where he threw her into his closet, as it brought him the added layer of security. He wrapped his hands around her neck and squeezed. His murderous grip held tight as she lost sense of the surroundings. The lamp bulb hanging from the ceiling was what kept her from losing complete consciousness.
He gave her some reprieve when he loosened his grip. She had the opportunity to damage him with her nails, but it proved fruitless. They struggled against each other, but soon he overwhelmed her. The best alternative was hoping she would be able to rip into his flesh at a later time, and then have another day to live. Her predicament reminded her of the nights she had to defend herself from johns with a viciousness only reserved for those special people.
She lay in the closet, trying to suck in as much oxygen in her tightened windpipe. She wondered when her body morph into a skeleton. How long would it take for a person or people to find her body? What level of decomposition stage would it be? Would they kick dirt over her bones because they viewed me as less than? Would they volunteer to cremate or bury her after the autopsy? Or would they just leave her for the animals to destroy further and not report it? Would she end up in the morgue for a long time because the detectives had given up finding her killer? She condemned herself for thinking about her body’s disposal right now instead of fighting for her life. She should have figured these details before finding herself under the foot of this man, but one rarely cares about death when she has such a hard time carrying out the process of living. Would it be wrong for her to give up the struggle and allow him to kill her? What would God think as the last little bit of life left her body?
Sensing a change within her, his rough hands completely moved away from her neck, giving her a brief reprieve to catch her breath. Yet, her body did not feel like her own, and he slapped her a few times and brought her back to her reality. She thought, I’m in deep trouble. As quick as he released his grip, his hands tightened around her neck again, his fingers burrowing deeper into her neck. Was he trying to produce excess fat when there was not any? Am I so bad that he feels it necessary to excavate the sides of my neck? She had done questionable things in the past, but her past actions were not so severe to equal death, let alone this kind of death.
Delilah teetered between leaving her living world behind and embracing the new world much darker and permanent. His body no longer looked like a man’s body upon glance. He now wore a robe, the darkest black she had ever seen. The hood brought a long shadow to his face. The thick folds of crushed satin hung peacefully on his robe that covered his now transparent skin. He floated above her, not wanting to violate her quite yet.
There was much more playing to be done, and he wanted to engage in this fabrication until the end. She felt the weight of him on her again, but this time only bore half the previous weight. Her survival instincts betrayed her, and soon found herself waiting to be extinguished, her chest lifting and falling heavy, knowing it would be her last breaths. He copied her movements, in a mocking way. She had no idea what his name was and before she could demand it from him, Delilah woke up and found her hands clutching her neck.
I’ve been thinking about this topic for a while. How many different faces does a person wear in his or her life? This is similar to the different personalities one has in their lives. Most of us have different personalities or faces when in public (walking on the street) vs. private (walking around your apartment or house). Most of us have a different personality when it comes to how you act in your job vs. in your home. The concept weighing on me is how can I bring my public and private life more in unison with each other so I can have less white or black and more grey. Or if you would like me to state it another way, less red and yellow and more orange.
The heart of the matter is that the face a person wears, it is really their face? Or is it the face he or she perceives as what others want it to be and so wears it with some hesitancy? Or it is a face that the person wears but has more characteristics of a mask as to hide something they are ashamed of or afraid of? Or another option is the face might have been a mask for so long that it has turned into a face that feels so real, that he or she constructed, but really was not his or hers to begin with because some kind of brainwashing she or he allowed makes it feel and appear real inside and outside?
I see happening quite a bit lately. I think a person needs to have at least a few different faces to wear so to speak. It serves to protect that person and allows him or her the comforts that is necessary to survive. I also think certain people use the different faces and masks to hide the truths before them whether it regards their physical, social, mental, emotional, and familial areas of their lives. I’m not immune and recognize it wholeheartedly. My life has been spent much of the time trying to strip away the layers that do not serve my highest purpose or good. I’m fully aware that people are complex and varied. The amount of complexity one possesses is as far as one is willing to take it, push it, stretch it, and make it his or her own.
This goes hand in hand with eliminating the naysayers while still keeping an open mind and non reactive stance when there is criticism involved. How does one disengage from gossip and drama when seems to be all around you? How does one release this negative energy at the end of the day? How does one relax enough before resting your head on your pillow so you are not up for two hours trying to get to sleep? Balance is a definite must for people who are well rounded. This doesn’t mean one hundred percent perfection every hour of the day because that doesn’t exist, but what does is the ability of all of us to include a variety of tasks in one day or one week that allows us some sense of accomplishment. Yet, freedom within this week must also be sought as well. If you change your mind not to do X on Tuesday, well then, SO BE IT. Fill it with something else and if it means relaxing, SO BE IT. This is what I’m learning to do for myself. In essence, I’m learning to take care of myself better on my own terms, but always keeping in mind pro-activity and some activity is better than nothing and being a slug.
Have a good night everyone and for those who have read some of my blogs or browsed my site, a huge thank you and a good week ahead for everyone.
It doesn’t matter if we strive to have a healthy marriage, strong kids or a killer career, these tenets cross-apply to all areas of life. Mental toughness is a key component to being successful. Yes, even for writers.
Some writers (A) are very open about putting people they know in their book, whether it is revenge (never be mean to a writer), or for less nefarious reasons (I admire you, I love you, I like you, you are fun, you are interesting). Some writers (B) deny all, even vague, linkage between real people and the […]
Got Time to Spare?!
No complaints because I’d rather have too much to do than too little. The last two weeks have been hectic on many fronts, but the fact I have been able to maneuver through it is a big accomplishment for me. I’m learning to compromise in areas of my life so others can take precedence. I’m learning to flow more like water in my daily life instead of rocks propelling forward at a fast pace as if they were kicked by angry shoes. There is a lot left for me to do, but in the meantime this will have to suffice. Thank you to myself for writing this. Thank you to myself for learning to take one day at a time.
The political atmosphere is complicated as it has ever been for Democrats, Republicans, Independents, and everyone else in between or around these major political parties. Most of us recognize there is trouble within the Democratic and Republican party. Bipartisan may as well not even exist in the dictionary right now.
One month of the Trump administration has gone by and it feels like a year’s time with everything going on; and ask was I that aloof during the Bush era? Was I living under a rock? Did I just not give a crap back then? I don’t think so because I didn’t vote for him either time. Bush even admitted some of his faults and poor decisions made during his eight years. This is the difference between him and the current president.
I hope in the remaining time left, which to me seems like a century, that the parties can work together for the working class people, but my hopes are not so high. I am doing more personal focus right now and the reasons likely due to my midlife crisis although it seems I’ve been in one my whole life. I’m not one to put on blinders to reality, but hope 2020 doesn’t end up worse than 2016 or 2017. The bottom line is Washington D.C. politicians are not acting like mature adults, and hope this changes soon.