It was during one of those teething nights when the nightmare pursued me. Baby was restless, waking up every half hour or so wanting to nurse, and not really happy with that. I was so absolutely exhausted. This was the fourth night in a row with no sleep. It was one of those nightmares that picks up where it left off when you fall back to sleep, so you wish to not sleep or try to fill your thoughts with happy things like puppies and visions of fields of wildflowers and sunshine and laughter. I kept on waking up and going back to sleep, so the nightmare lasted for several hours.
It was a cannibal that pursued me. It chased me and I ran and I hid and it never quite caught up with me. The dream was rather frightening, really, me skulking around in the dark, being hunted. Almost being caught and devoured again and again. Eventually, as I rolled over to feed and calm the baby once again, I thought of my uncle counselling my mom about killing nuisance crows, and came up with a way to deal with the cannibal. We crushed up some pills and soaked a big red steak in that and then put it out in the garbage for the cannibal to find. Finally the cannibal was sedated for a moment. Of course, we reasoned that it would be a good idea to restrain it, should it wake up and renew the pursuit, refreshed from the nap. It was precisely at this point that the greater meaning of the dream became absolutely clear. Like a curtain lifted, I understood immediately. We restrained the now drooling cannibal in a child’s car seat bucket. I suddenly recognized the cannibal to be my own baby, drooling from teething and literally eating from me all night long.
What a horrible night.