The Dream of an Earthquake
Donna O’Donnell Figurski
One night, after I came home from a long day of work, I noticed that my friend Eileen had called me twice during the day. I love talking to Eileen. Although it was 9:30, I decided to call her back and chit-chat a little bit to update each other on our everyday lives.
During our conversation, Eileen said, “Mira, you know what? I dreamed about an earthquake last night. The shaking was so hard that I got up and went to the computer to see if any earthquake had happened nearby. I didn’t find anything. So, I realized that the earthquake was a dream. And what a dream!”
Her dream instantly brought up the experience of my having had a similar dream while I was living in Albania with my family. I said, “You know, Eileen, years ago, I had a dream of an earthquake too.” I continued, “I dreamed an earthquake was happening, and it threw me from the balcony of my third-floor apartment. I fell onto the ground – but standing up.”
Eileen’s dream was frightening, but I told her about my positive symbol of “standing up” after “falling down.” So, I said, “The dream is telling you that, whatever happens, you will be fine.” My own experiences have shown that this indeed can be true.
My earthquake dream first occurred in March 1991 – a time of turmoil in Albania. Many young people had left the country. Two days after I had the dream, I got a phone call from my uncle. He said that my brother (who lived with my parents and my stepbrother) got onto a ship and escaped to Italy. He left behind my paralyzed mom, my dad, who was still recovering from a stroke, and my stepbrother, who had been diagnosed with a severe disease.
The news was a total shock. I felt divided. One part of me cared about my immediate family, and another part worried about my parents and my brothers. Psychologically, I was struggling to find a solution to the situation, while in my heart, I remained calm and at peace. My heart didn’t allow me to hurt myself with feelings of anger, anguish, or bitterness toward the decision of my twenty-two-year-old brother.
Although I was still picking up the pieces of the shattered glass I had become after the accidental death of my almost three-year-old son and having two little kids, a paralyzed mom, a half-paralyzed dad, and a brother with an incurable disease and also working as a teacher, I didn’t think of myself. The positive symbol of my earthquake-dream supported my actions. I was “standing up” when I needed it most.
Situations like these made me grow as a person and reach the deeper core of myself as a human being. By acknowledging peace within terrible storms, I have been able to extend my heart and actions to those who needed me.
My peace allowed me to place my thoughts into a higher level of understanding. I can accept life as it comes by using exuberant, and often hidden, strength, courage, love, care, generosity, kindness, gentleness, and loyalty.
After I got off the phone with Eileen, I went to sleep. The next morning I had this poem within myself. It is about our existence and our strength. I hope you enjoy it.
Opening the eyelids and waking up by touching the dawn,
While the eyeballs kissing the vastness of the light,
Waking and feeling the joy of being alive,
Living through the day and experience,
The joy of living, the thunders, the storms,
And earthquakes that bring shakiness,
And awakens as much as the labor of a new baby born,
Still standing up and building up being grabbed,
And infused by the strength that lies beneath and beyond,
Sleeping is falling in quietness and stillness,
And darkness of the other side of our existence,
Being born thus waking up,
Living through the experience,
And dying thus sleeping in stillness,
Are the matching pieces of a puzzle,
Named as “our known but unknown existence.
Thank you, Ermira Mitre.
Any views and opinions of the Guest Blogger are purely his/her own.
(Clip Art compliments of Bing.)
(Photos compliments of Ermira Mitre.)
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