Whew. Thank goodness it was only a dream, but unlike others that fade off into the far distant recesses of the mind never to be heard from again, this one is indelibly etched in my head. The last thing I remember before waking was having the thought, “Oh my God! I hope this is only a dream!”
The details are fuzzy except for the intense feeling of being utterly captivated by the presence of an adorable, lovable, tiny little pink cat that showed its affection by way of a fuzzy pink body weaving and curling itself around my leg. Whoever heard of a pink cat—one that did the occasional morph into blue or white? Hmm. Chameleon cat. I should have known then and there that something was a little off. Beware of the bizarre.
Like a kid with her nose plastered against the glass of a pet store window, I simply had to take that precious, cuddly, creature home with me. With its delicate petite little body, I concluded that she must be a girl. No matter. I’ll just assume that she’s a she, and that her name is Pinky.
Once home, I watched in horror as Pinky quickly morphed from her sweet little critter into a vicious, terrifying predator with me in sight as her target. The first hint of trouble was when she lunged at me and tore the bow off my black strappy dress-up sandals while they were still on my feet. The next was when she sank her teeth into my derriere and refused to let go. Maybe she was jealous of my sexy sandals. Who knows? Why was I wearing dressy sexy shoes in my casual dream world, anyway, but hey—it’s a only dream, right?
Worse than the teeth sunk into my flesh was the underlying awareness that I had abandoned my dear sweet, gentle, loyal, loving, trustworthy, safe, obedient dog Charlie in favor of the sneaky, vicious, con-artist pink panther terrorist that had pulled a nasty bait-and-switch con job on me. What kind of awful person would ever do such a dreadful thing to a dearly beloved pet? I was heartbroken and horrified. Try as I might, I just couldn’t seem to find a way to unlock the jaws of the panther or get Charlie back. Somewhere between trying to clean up the blood from my nasty wound and regretting my actions about Charlie, I woke up to the realization that it was only a dream, thank goodness, and I breathed a great sigh of blessed relief to see Charlie lying peacefully next to me in his bed. It gives a whole new meaning to “Sorry, Charlie!”
Well okay then. That was yesterday and today is today and since then I’ve been wondering what in the world ever brought such a nightmare upon me. Was this a concoction courtesy of the great cosmic clown to provide me with writing material chock full of grist for the mill? Did the clown hold a mirror up to my face to show me aspects of myself that I’d prefer to keep hidden away? If so, good grief, I certainly got a face full of NO—that can’t be me! Is there a vicious ego named Pinky lurking somewhere in the deepest recesses of my being awaiting the first moment of weakness as an opportunity to lunge forth and attack?
Oh but wait—what about Charlie, the gentle, trustworthy loving companion, adorable in spite of his quirky little ways? Charlie, the abandoned? Charlie, the loyal friend of many years from whom I walked away lured by the seduction of a temptress with a cunning plan to con me into selling my soul to the devil?
Oh but wait another minute—where there’s a Pinky there is also a Charlie. Pinky the devil, Charlie the angel, both coexisting within the deep recesses of my soul. I get to choose. I can be a Pinky, or I can be a Charlie. Or I can bounce back and forth from one to the other like a ping pong ball moving at warp speed. I get to decide which one I wish to live with, which one I will take home and make my own. Sometimes I am a slow learner, but this one was pretty easy to figure out. The answer is obvious.
So here’s the thing, Pinky. I’ve got your number. I know who you are. Your name is ego and your game is fear. You think you can con me into believing that you’re my best friend, but in reality, you are my worst enemy. Oh, I might believe you for a minute or so, but eventually, I’ll wise up and figure you out. You’re very good at your act, but I’m not buying it. You should be on the stage—the first stage out of town. If it ever comes down to a battle for my soul, a battle between love and fear, trust me, Charlie and I will win because we fight on the side of love, and because we know that fear is only something that we make up in the nightmare of our minds. Love trumps fear and love always wins in the end.
One other thing occurred to me as I pondered my way through the day. Perhaps at the moment when I take my final breath and close my eyes for the last time, I will wake up on the other side, look back and realize that it was all only a dream. Or a nightmare, depending upon which side I have chosen to live. My days may be numbered, but the good news is—I can still make what’s left of them count on the side of good.
C’mon Charlie, you sweet precious little thing, you. Let’s go out together hand in paw and have ourselves a nice, peaceful little walk. I won’t leave you again, I promise. Ever.