Tuesday, October 23, 2007

silly crying girl

The last time I had this dream, I must have been around 10 years old. Funny how dreaming can pull such old memories from out of the deep recesses of our minds...

The event that created a dream

~This older boy who lived down the street and around the corner, asked me if I wanted to go pheasant hunting with him and his family. I did and it was all so different from any experience I'd ever had with my own family.

A big field, shooting guns, dogs running around everywhere...and the pretty birds that fell from the sky.

I didn't know what I was getting into, I just enjoyed the fact that this boy wanted me to go somewhere with him, surrounded by the safety net of his parents. Even the mom shot at the birds, I was horrified. I'm not even sure I understood what hunting meant and the reality of taking life away from a living thing. The dead birds were heaped into piles, the red blood staining the iridescent rainbows that I saw in their feathers. The dogs had lust in their eyes, something else I had never seen before. I don't remember any conversations we may have had that day.

When we got back to their house, I was too young to understand that I should of asked to go home, I was expected to eat dinner with them. The mom took the birds and placed them in the kitchen sink, washing the blood from their limp bodies. She placed a chair from the dining room and told me to stand next to her. She showed me how to pull out the feathers and handed me a bird. Each feather clung to the skin as it was being pulled from it's body, the eyes were open and void of life. I felt the bile rise in my throat and I began to silently cry. Tears rolled down my cheeks and my nose sniffed a couple of times. The mom saw that I was crying and she took the bird from my hands. Where was the boy? Why was I here and alone with this woman in the kitchen? She sat me at the table with a glass of milk, I don't remember any words of consolation, just the feeling that I had done something wrong and was being punished. It felt like I sat there forever.

Finally, she put the TV on and soon I could smell the birds cooking in the oven. I knew they were going to make me eat them and I began to feel the panic rise in my chest. She announced that dinner was ready and everyone came from the hidden places, somewhere from the back of the house. Silently, I sat there, seeing the days events play before my eyes; the loud bursts from the guns, the piercing cries of the birds, dogs barking with hunger in their eyes, while retrieving their rewards. I took one bite and tasted the oily gamy meat on my tongue. I ran to the kitchen sink and spit it out, embarrassed and crying again.

She put me in her car and silently drove me home, she was disappointed in me and I could feel that I had been a waste of her time. I don't remember talking to my parents about the events of the day, if I did, I'm sure many of the details were left out. That night I dreamt that dead, plucked, bloody birds were chasing me and I couldn't run fast enough to get away from them. I had that same nightmare for 2 weeks and once again the other night.

Who was I to them?
Just some silly girl who cried all the time and I bet that Mom is thankful, that all she ever had to raise were boys.


Blogger maggiegracecreates said...

i was raised in a hunting family, but i can understand the effect that experience had on you. i too have recurring dreams that seem to surface at various times of stress. your body is telling you something through this.

i am sending healing thoughts and hugs your way.

12:12 PM  
Blogger dreamergirl said...

The only experience I've had with hunting is my host-father. He shoots elks that have been injured by cars. I could never go hunting and am so sorry you had to go through this. I just cannot understand that mother!!

Hugs to you! xox

12:46 PM  
Blogger aka Cate said...

It is an odd thought isn't it, that there are families other than our own who operate in a completely different way. Imagine what we could learn if we really knew how other families live and love.

The most resonating thought that came from your dream was the disapointment the mother had in you. Does that resonate for you too?

2:29 PM  
Blogger BJ said...

Darlene - I have a recurring dream since my husband passed away. I have spent the last few years trying to figure it out. I hadn't had it for about a year when it suddenly re-surfaced the other night. I'm much better now with this dream than I was. I think I'm working my way through it.

That whole event with the boy and his family was insane. That mother was a cruel, insensitive beast! I feel badly that you ever experienced such a day like that. It's no wonder you are still dreaming about it!

Hugs to you.....you most sweet beautiful lady!

3:14 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

my impression from that dream is that possibly you feel divided trying to serve whatever the mother represents to you (& her expectations) and you being true to your compassionate heart. maybe the birds are chasing you again to remind you to stay in your compassionate heart at the risk of disappointing others? it is challenging to please everybody but most import i feel to serve our hearts. i had a similar experience to you when i was a child. it is a very strong memory about being torn between pleasing adults and doing what was expected, and choosing my own feelings and being true to my heart.

3:26 PM  
Blogger Vanessa said...

such an unpleasant experience. and to relive it, so difficult.
i hope the dream stops recurring.
love to you,

3:27 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

ps: i think your response to the day shows exquisite sensitivity and compassion, which is also really apparent reading your blog! it is a challenging disposition, but what a gift!
i also see the experience and dream as a gift in that they are great teachers making you who you are right now.

3:31 PM  
Blogger Wanda said...

What a deep sad story told so well, I could feel, and smell everything, even the tear coming down your cheek. I agree with BJ, that was so insensitive of that mother. What was she thinking.

But I grew up in a "hunnting and fishing" family, and saw many things that disturbed me at first, and then I became use to it. I'm not so glad I did now.

4:20 PM  
Blogger Shaz said...

EEwwwwwww I cant imagine as a sensitive young girl going through that.
That mumma was just mean she should of told you it was okay to feel bad.
Life had been taken and it was new to you.
She didnt have to agree just understand.

5:20 PM  
Blogger LEstes65 said...

I was raised in a fishing/hunting family. I remember thinking it completely unfair that my dad & brothers would go shoot ducks and then come plop them in the kitchen for my mom to prep. Same with the fish. I remember thinking I'd make my husband clean his own stinking carcasses.

I love this story. I love what it says about you. I love the silly crying girl.

8:12 PM  
Blogger cherry girl said...

Oh my, no wonder you had nightmares!!

1:18 AM  
Blogger gracie said...

You have told this so vividly that it is impossible not to feel it, and not to feel anger and sorrow in the reading of it. Such confusion for a sensitive girl. I can identify with the feeling of being trapped in a horror where the control is not yours and your emotions are inescapable.

4:54 PM  
Anonymous Annie Morris said...

Oh Darlene,

How awful for you. I used to be dragged along for the great Australian tradition of "spotlighting" rabbits. It was so horrible.

I still have the odd dream about my feet being covered with warm rabbit carcasses, (which they frequently were on those nights).

I could never kill a living thing (well, except spiders... from a big distance... only if they're inside my house...). And it's so horrible feeling like you did something wrong (which you didn't) when you're so young.

Poor darling precious little girl, not silly crying girl in any possible way.

Peace be with you (and your dreams)



3:53 AM  
Blogger bella said...

What a haunting and well written story. It gave me chills.
I love that the little girl who cried all those years ago is still alive in you.

11:04 AM  
Blogger Sandy said...

that is so sad. I LOVE birds, any kind of birds and I can't imagine a little girl seeing all this and being expected to join in.

I caught some kids awhile ago with a BB gun going out into the back fields behind my house to shoot birds. I asked them to stop and showed them all my bird feeders..

I was surprised when they did stop. They were teenagers, I would have thought they would have said a few choice words and continued.


9:59 AM  
Blogger me-nikk said...

I grew up with a family of hunters. On more than one occasion, my uncle would show me his dead animals which included three dead rabbits lying on the basement floor. The worst was after dinner one night, my uncle told me that I had just eaten Bambi. They laughed at my reaction. I was mortified. Grown ups can be so cruel at times. They don't always take the time to remember a child’s mind and heart and explain things in a way that they understand to help them deal with whatever situation. I hope to be a better parent than that.

10:00 AM  

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