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Saving the housewife


I had this dream a few nights ago. I was on this cruise ship. It was peaceful and sunny. A bunch of us were hanging out on deck when a huge ocean liner roared past us like an out-of-control freight train. In its wake, it left a slew of passengers face down in the water. I was on the phone with my mother at the time. I calmly explained that I had something rather urgent to attend to and hung up. Then I dove in and swam frantically towards the drowning passengers; all the while shouting to anyone who would listen, “Come on! Get in! We have to save them! Everyone just has to save one person.”

When I finally reached the victims, I grasped onto one, a middle-aged apron-clad housewife, and tried desperately to flip her over. But she was too heavy, weighted down, like an anchor. I finally managed to turn her over only to discover that I was too late. She was dead. I awoke with a deep sense of grief, loss and failure.

I don’t normally write down my dreams anymore. I used to when I was younger. I discovered in a graduate psychology course that our deepest truths can only be accessed through our dreams which directly reflect our sub-conscious mind. If you learn how to interpret your dreams, you can bypass your intellect, ego and conscious mind and unearth the unadulterated truth of your soul. In this particular case, interpretation didn’t seem all that difficult.

As a devoted wife and mother, I sometimes feel like the world is zooming past me as I, metaphorically donning a tasteful Vera Bradley apron, stand mindlessly amid heaps of dirty laundry, preparing yet another peanut-butter and jelly sandwich. But as a working mom, I am constantly focused on my inability to do, say, give enough to my family. It always seems like I’m a day late and a dollar short. The whole dilemma sort of weighs me down, kind of like an anchor. Get it? I told you it wasn’t rocket science.

I’m still kind of sad that I got there too late to save the housewife. She looked so forlorn and vacant. If I could rewrite this nightmare, I’d have me heroically rescue the housewife, bring her back to life and somehow manage to give meaning to what she sometimes views as the empty monotony of day to day living. But I’m not sure I’m up to that task.

Oh well, enough philosophizing for one day. I’m off to locate a Puffle for my son. They’re hard to find, you know. Especially the black one, and that’s the one he wants. And I want to get the right one, before it’s too late.

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About gettrich

Debra Rich Gettleman is a professional actor, playwright and journalist living in Seattle, WA with her husband Mark and two amazing boys, Levi and Eli.

One response to “Saving the housewife

  1. I wish I had something profound to say, but all I can say is:

    (1) *hug*
    (2) I don’t remember my dreams much anymore, but I had a horrible nightmare that awakened me at 4 a.m. and kept me awake. I actually awakened Ba.D. to describe it to him, following which he told me I should definitely not read the book he’s working his way through right now (Robopocalypse). I agreed that if it was anything like my dream, I’d rather have unanesthetized oral surgery.

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