The meaning of last night’s dream still eludes me, but wrapping words around it will release its intent for my psychic growth:

 It was 10:30 p.m., Christmas Eve, very cold. The Director decided to activate the carnival grounds in honor of several of us leaving the following morning. Brilliant floodlights illumine the hilly area filled with rides, games, and confection stands. A calliope pumps tinny melodies among the merrymakers that score the darkness. I wasn’t expecting this celebration, given my limited energy and need for rest before beginning my journey. My companions feel similarly, but we join the festivities.

 10:30 p.m. situates the dream story at night, the symbol for the end of life, one often found in my dreams. Christmas Eve suggests pregnant fullness, the final hours before Mary of Nazareth delivers her son Jesus in Bethlehem; suggests, as well, the tense waiting for what is to come after my last illness—also unknown. In the dream I’ve been in formation with others, similarly trained, and we’re ready to move on.

The Director does not appear, yet makes all decisions conducive to his students’ projects. Up to this point, the scrutiny of his program has borne fruit, or so it seems. But to interrupt the solemnity of Christmas Eve with a carnival gives me pause: The yells of hawkers, the blinking lights, the grating music, the money rapidly changing hands, the gaudy prizes, the long lines, the smelly garbage cans.

Unfortunately, the commotion mirrors the disorder in my unconscious. I can’t deny it, despite working the 12 Steps of CPA. Again, a smooth-talking director has hoodwinked me. Enmeshed in groupthink, I overextend myself at the carnival and violate my self-care practices.

So I stand corrected by the dream: it’s happened before. I don’t need such madness.