I just woke up from a brief nap. We had fairly broken sleep last night because Katie probably has a urinary tract infection, so she was visiting the yard every couple of hours.
I woke up because I was having a nightmare. I was lost on my unicycle in my parents’ old neighborhood, which isn’t that far from here. I lived there for over ten years, and it’s not that large, so I’m not really sure how I was lost.
That’s when I realized I have been having the same recurring nightmares lately. I’m lost in a neighborhood that resembles one where I had my old paper route, or I’m lost in a neighborhood that resembles where my parents used to live. Sometimes, it has combinations of both with parts of Plano added for extra terror.
There are a few other constants in the dreams – I’m lost, I’m on foot or on a unicycle, there are rarely other people around. When I wake up, I’m still trying to find my way home.
The only true constant is I am always approached and befriended by dogs, usually three white ones, a large one that looks like a poodle, a medium-sized one that looks like a Lhasa Apso, and a small mutt.
I’m sure the white is symbolic. The sizes are just from reading Goldilocks too many times as a child. I have no idea where the unicycle popped up. I’m pretty sure my foot surgeon would frown on a unicycle since I broke my foot walking.
As to the causes. maybe it’s depression from 2020. Maybe it’s stress from being unemployed again. Maybe it’s from sleeping too much with a dog smashed against me.
However, I prefer to think it’s a reminder for everyone – dogs are often your only true friends, and dogs will love you even if you’ve lost your way.
So, a gentle reminder, especially at the holidays: pets are not good gifts. Pets are a gift that come with instant responsibilities, and long-term commitments. Don’t give a gift that brings happiness on Christmas and is in the shelter by Easter.
Most importantly, if you have a pet, love your pet. They love you, no matter what.
And stay off your unicycle. You don’t want to get lost.