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DYING IN YOUR DREAM


Have you ever committed suicide in your sleep? I did just last night. Well, sort of.

In my dream I had returned to the restaurant where I used to wait tables back in high school. Louise's Trattoria in Beverly Hills is now out of business. I think they made it a Gap. But back in the early 90s it was hopping. In the dream I was once again a food server, and my former coworkers were still serving up sides of spaghetti Bolognese. Paige was there. I always thought she was a beauty. I wonder whatever happened to her? We touched cheeks in a sort of kiss. She was always theatrical that way.

I got the job (in the dream) on a part-time basis as a chance to interact with people, occupy my mind, distract myself (from what, I am not sure - maybe from the business of dreaming!) but soon I began to wonder whether I hadn't bitten off more than I could chew. The place was jam-packed. And I couldn't remember my section. Repeatedly I needed to consult the table chart, forgetting which tables were mine almost before I had looked away. And there were the disgruntled clientele. Divas, the lot of 'em. After all it is Beverly Hills. I wanted tofurky, not ground beef, complained one lady, mistaking me for her busboy. Another table applauded me for having the patience to get all their orders right. I walked away without remembering to write anything down. Suddenly, I was "swamped" in server's parlance. My coworkers assumed some of my duties, and I theirs. I went to the computer to put in an order and forgot my server ID. Then I left a check at the counter, and a cook walks away with it.

I begin to feel really stressed out. I'm over this, I say to myself. And I wake up, just like that.

Now, did I arise from my slumber feeling guilty that I had escaped my problems? Of course not. It was only a dream. Make-believe. In a way I had just committed suicide, since I could have gone on slogging through problems in my dream job that had become a nightmare. So it is or may be with waking life. The mind places constraints on our actions, morality tells us that life is sacred, and not to take our own. What is sacred is the awareness in which life forms appear, and awareness can't be killed, for it is eternal. That's probably why I was able to walk away from medical doctoring without any guilt.

So here's to killing yourself, Kid. Slay the mind which doubts and feels guilt. But I would never take my life in my waking dream called life. Because I so want to learn how it all turns out!

Maybe I had the dream since California's Governor Brown just legalized assisted suicide in our state.  It's possible. Because there are no end to possibilities, until you stop thinking. Though for some, and sometimes for me, thinking is half the fun.

But really, dying in your dream is just another name for waking up.

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