Dream: I’m in a scene from the movie Contact. Dr. Arroway’s dream doppelgänger is right in front of me. We’re heading down the metal walkway towards the interstellar transportation pod. She is confident and ready to go. I’m anxious and nervous as hell. I stop at the pod’s open door–beyond it is a transport through time and space and who knows what else. I look back at where we came from, still nervous and anxious. Just then, Arroway reaches out and touches my arm. I keep looking behind us. Her gesture is on my peripheral. It’s meant to be comforting and subtle; it’s saying something without saying anything. I feel that comfort very briefly, and then as my anxiety takes back over, I reach out and playfully, sarcastically, slap her arm, my own way of saying something without saying anything. Just like that, with contact.
I haven’t seen the movie Contact in 15 years, at least. I had it on VHS if that tells you anything. It obviously pulled on some cords because my dream directors decided to keep it ready for just the right time, and apparently that time is now. It has all the feelings of a sunken ship rising from forgotten depths.
Our dreams know how to bring us exactly what we need, and the Natural Dreamwork approach helps us receive this in a deep, multi-dimensional way…beyond the meager perceptions of our intellects.
This dream in particular is raw with an anxious and nervous energy that I cannot hide nor keep contained.
And that’s the point. I have to feel it.
I have to feel it in the same way I did when I first saw that movie. Even more so. It’s personal now because my dreams brought me this specific scene and sacred encounter. Every step and sound of the metal grate under my feet evoked an overwhelming sense of nervousness and anxiety—and the underlying fear – about whatever was behind me but also whatever is before me. The Natural Dreamwork approach is a full-on embrace of this moment and my feelings within it.
And the woman’s kind gesture? I feel into it longer too. It’s an invitation. She’s saying, “Hey…it’s okay. You ready?”
Well shit no I’m not ready, and I’m a tad resistant to her comfort and encouragement, even if it’s subtle and gentle.
But something in this dream teacher’s presence tells me I am actually ready. Something deep inside me agrees. And something in this contact within Contact tells me everything in this encounter is exactly what I needed and how I needed it.
We all have our typical reactions. I might get quiet or be a smartass when I’m anxious. I see both of these in this scene–my silence, the way I mirror what she does to me but with a more sarcastic touch. I don’t stay in her reassurance very long though. Her gesture does slow me down and ground me for just a second, but then my anxiety speeds everything back up. Natural Dreamwork reopens all of this so I can be more fully present with all of myself and with all of the soulful guidance that’s being offered.
My playful slap back is an engaging act, but when I work with this dream I want to do more than just say, “Yeah yeah. I hear you.” I want to let her comforting hand gesture stay with me even longer. I want to know what she is saying as well as inviting me to feel. I want to sink as deeply as possible into my nervousness and anxiety and open up everything I’m scared of so that I can embrace even more of her support. There’s so much medicine in that. And gratitude.
A few weeks after I had this dream, Contact showed up on tv one night. Go figure.
So I rewatched it. And I was reminded all over again how much I loved the search, the struggle, the revelations, the 18 hours of static (torturous as they may have been). I felt back into my Contact dream and I was regifted with its healing abilities all over again. Our dreams are a timeless and inexhaustible resource like that.
Ironically enough, an important realization occurred to me after rewatching Contact.
As a student and lover of my dreams, I don’t need a mysterious signal from light years away or a quarter trillion dollar feat of interstellar engineering to have that kind of life-changing experience.
I have my dreams. We all do. And we have them every single night.
“No words to describe it.
Poetry. They should’ve sent a poet.
So beautiful. So beautiful… I had no idea.”
-Dr. Arroway, Contact
Ali Meyer is a passionate Natural Dreamwork practitioner. She is a former English teacher of 14 years, a traveler at home and abroad, philosophy minor, Reiki student, and has been working towards her master’s in literature/creative writing. She is a student in Conscious Feminine Leadership Training at Women Writing for a Change in Bloomington, IN, and is currently writing a book inspired by her years of teaching. You can contact her via email: email@example.com. Read more about her work on the About Us page.
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