Last night I had a dream. It was quite unnerving as it involved everything and everyone around me. In the dream, I was the last person to jump into our car, inside the car there was every family member you could think of , as I look ahead to our yard there is all sorts of debris around the place, from boxes to furniture to toys. A storm is brewing but everyone is in a rush to get somewhere and are urging with me to get in the car. All the while the storm picks up, swirls things around, the rain threatens and lightning flashes through the sky. Suddenly, something in the yard catches alight and is on fire. My husband says don’t worry the rain will put the fire out, let’s go we’re going to be late. I’m unhinged but agree and so off we go. Because it’s a dream I zoom back into the scene outside the front of my house and a gush of wind ignites the fire further.
Seemingly in a flash the boxes, trees and furniture outside are all on fire, the fire spreads to the front entrance of our house. There is an entrance/guest lounge and things are burning slowly all over this room but only this room, the fire spreads only this far, almost in a contained way.
The car returns with me and everyone in it. There are screams and shouts and shock at all the flames. My husband manages to put out the fires and everything else in the house remains intact.
As we walk in the house we reoccupy it, everything is fine. The drama has subsided and we all resume to normal activities. I cook in the unharmed kitchen, we have dinner and conversations and all is well. Except, everytime you walk in or out the house you are reminded of what had happened by the charred walls, the flamed damaged curtains hanging limply on sagging curtain rails and the ever present smell of smoke.
This dream got to me. In so many ways that I cannot explain them all. The flame in the beginning of the dream is the little thing that sparks an argument or creates an issue in your home. The driving away is indicative of all the times you wished the issue away and never really dealt with it. The contained fire is all the damage that has been caused, that will remain, perhaps becomes less of a nuisance over time but the smoky smell lingers, and the ashen walls can be seen and the fear of what might have been is felt for months after, forever even?
Why don’t we deal with the issue when it happens? Why can’t we have a conversation and then end that conversation on the same page? Why is there so many ways to just get it wrong, be misinterpreted, judged, whilst on the other hand hurt each others feelings without knowing it. Rash decisions, glib comments, insincere words piled up over time creates fires. These things harden us towards the next fire, where you seemingly are not even that affected. Let’s assume you get to a point where you don’t even see the fire? This is not how it should be… we must strive to be better…. wiser and fight the fires with more determination and conviction than we do.
In other words, if you see a storm brewing take the precautions that you need to. Some of them may go as follows:
- Understand the motives of why you need/want to do certain things. Get on the same page people.
- Don’t make assumptions as to who is responsible for things like communication. More communication, less expectations
- Be consistent with resolving issues. Be kinder more of the time, not random acts of kindness.
- Don’t sweat the small stuff, being late is better than your house burning
So before things escalate, weigh up your motives versus the bigger picture and think beyond yourself, sometimes. Everyone is human, everyone has flaws, nobody is perfect and everyone makes mistakes, but it’s how you deal with those mistakes that can make a world of difference. Understand your imperfections, understand their needs, more importantly understand each other’s perspective, and make compensation for both your extremes, so that you can continue face the fire together.