Thursday, June 11, 2009

How To Choose?



I had an incredibly vivid dream last night about an old boyfriend with whom I was once in love. We are reunited, somehow. We are older and married to other people. I am married to my real husband.

Our attraction to one another is overwhelming. We discuss leaving our spouses to be together again for the rest of our lives. He makes his decision and asks me to make mine and this is the crux of the dream. In the dream, I am as crazy in love with him as I was when we were together and I want to go. But I have my husband with whom I have lived and known all these years and he knows about the decision and he will not ask me to stay nor give me an easy out. I have to decide.

I have to decide between a lifetime relationship of ups and downs, ins and outs, happiness, sadness, frustration, beautiful events and a new life with an old love which is, really, just a memory of good things I recall. That is what memory does. It fades til there are only the good things left. But I believe if I go, I will be blissfully happy. I believe if I stay, it is truly the right thing to do.

What did I do? What would you do?

19 comments:

Star said...

I would not base my future happiness on a dream, that's for sure. However, I would look at the underlying causes of why I had that dream? Maybe I was not satisfied with my current relationship? Maybe I woke up too quickly and kept the dream too long? I think I would put the dream back where it belongs, in the past? Is that what you did?
Blessings, Star

ellen abbott said...

I went through a period of bad times with my spouse...lasted years. during this time I met and had a relationship in my dreams with a man, same man every dream, not someone who I know or have ever known. I took a separate vacation to decide what I wanted to do about my marriage. On that trip, towards the end, I had a dream about him/us. Very strange with a greek chorus in the background singing 'she will never leave him'. I must have admitted it, anyway, when I awoke the next morning I had made my decision, I would stay and see it through. It was like a huge weight had been lifted off my shoulders. My marriage slowly began to improve and actually got back to the happy and loving place. I never dreamed of my mystery lover again after that last dream.

Sixpence and a Blue Moon said...

I am old enough to know I never tell another what they should do, nor do I know what I would do. People always think they would do the right thing, that they know exactly what they would do. No one ever knows what he or she would do until he or she is put in that exact situation.

We cannot erase memories or people who were once a part of our life from our hearts and minds. And whether in dreams or reality, they do appear from time to time.

I saw an old boyfriend a couple of years ago, who had been the love of my life. He had possessed a part of my heart all my life. But it did me good to see him; those feelings were no longer there. We were both such different people, with very little in common. I was very happy to have put those feelings in a past that was fun and exciting at one time in my life.

I have no doubt, if you were faced with this in real life, you would do exactly what 'you' should do.

Thought provoking post.

xoxo

Grandma Nina said...

I agree, this is very thought provoking. But dreams are not real and I'm sure if you were to meet up with this person in real life you would probably be disappointed. It has been my experience over the last 30 years of marriage that if you hang in there through the rough spots you will find your marriage grows stronger. The grass is not greener...

California Girl said...

Star: this is only a dream. It isn't happening. The people are real however which makes it real while the dream is in progress.

EA: Your story is interesting because it has a finale. I used to dream about my first boyfriend years ago and thought I'd never stop. At some point, I did. It was a relief.

Sixpence: I think the outcome would be the same if I saw him again after all these years. There are people, however, who meet up many years after they were together and reunite. It's more common that we might think. That idea kind of prompted this post.

Nina: Thank you. I'm sure you are right. 25 yrs is somebody's lifetime, that's for sure.

Baino said...

I think the memory of someone you've had an affection for is always strong and attractive, hey they remain young and exciting while we struggle through our day to day long term relationships. Interesting dream. I dream of past dalliances too but they're always in their 20's! Rather nice really.

California Girl said...

Star: I think I sounded harsh when I answered you the first time. It is a dream but it is one that bothers me. I will reveal the answer after I see what other comments this prompts. Putting the dream away is a wise answer.

Baino: I've wondered for years why I continually dream of one or two men/boys with whom I was once in love. It used to worry me tremendously as if I'd made a mistake or was going to be a lousey wife etc etc. But, it's true, if you feel deeply for someone you can carry that feeling for the rest of your life. btw, had both the men been in their 20's, I still would have had a tough time making a decision!

Marguerite said...

No chance of that happening for me. My high school boyfriend is now a non-denominational pastor, happily married for 30 something years. And my college boyfriend is now a Catholic priest!! lol Just my luck!

Linda Pendleton said...

That is an interesting dream which seems about unrest. But I got out my handy dandy dream book, (Betty Bethards The Dream book: Symbols for Self -Understanding, 1983) and she had this to say about Marriage and a former lover. “To dream of marrying a former love or friend suggests integrating the positive qualities of the person into one’s own consciousness, rather than projecting them on to the other.”

I’m paraphrasing here, but she also mentioned looking at yin-yang, about the dynamic union of opposites, and to balance male and female energies within+.

So in the end of the dream, did you do neither, but were alone and fulfilled, by chance?

Coffee Messiah said...

I can't imagine "going backwards" 'cause it is just that. So much changes between way back then and now anyway.

As far as Betty Bethards, no offense to the woman who mentioned her, but met her and her boyfriend of then back in the 80s a few times and had a few dinners with them. The guy seemed "wanting" and insecure and, well I found her rap a little spacey and not much on depth. My friend at the time was into all this and always wanted someone to tell her about future events.

What's the point?

Anyway, FWIW

Cheers!

Susan said...

It's easy to romanticize what once was, because, as someone else said, you don't live with that person on a daily basis and have to deal with life's frustrations and disappointments with them.

I got married when I was still a teenager (still with him, going on 37 years), moving directly from my parents' house to his. I have the most wonderful, devoted husband, but that didn't stop me from wondering what might have been with my first love. In fact, I let those feelings prevent me from being truly happy for 20 years of my marriage. Then I just started looking at it in a different way. The first love and I have absolutely nothing in common. I couldn't imagine giving up what I have to go to something that would probably be over in a flash. When I run across a stray thought of him now, I just picture him farting in the morning. Does it for me every time!

Ima Wizer said...

Stay. I learned that the hard way by leaving my husband and wishing I'd stayed for the last 32 years. We have lunch about every two months now and his third wife (I was his first, high school sweethearts, had three children with him) doesn't mind. We recall old memories and laugh and he doesn't know I still love him. I would never tell. What could have been will never be known. What happened was a hard life, losing custody of my children, working my fingers to the bone......life.

California Girl said...

Marguerite: Your answers are hilarious. I guess you're not dreamin' 'bout them, huh?

Linda: I like that interpretation because he had very nice qualities I could certainly use!

CM: I no longer try to predict the future. My Buddhist therapist has helped me live in the now. And, boy, is that a hard thing to do. What does "FWIW" mean? I'm terrible at text speak.

Susan & Ima: you both have poignant instructive stories of truth and I'm vry glad you shared them. Thank you so much.

ArtSparker said...

What a very Socratic dream.

California Girl said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
California Girl said...

Thank you AS. You forced me to look up Socrates and read a bit and I came across the word "paradox", defined as "a statement or proposition that seems self-contradictory or absurd but in reality expresses a possible truth."

Okay, I can accept that.

Tanna said...

So, please tell us your choice.

When I have similar dreams, I like to think that perhaps my other love and I are connecting in some space not defined by time or place... the visits are always peaceful and joyful.

Greg said...

that my friend is a hard choice to make

California Girl said...

Tanna: choice was posted as "What Dreams Are Made Of".

Greg: you are correct, sir.

Christina

Christina
by Cole Scott