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Advice Through My Dreams

I had a dream two weeks ago, a stress dream. I left New York without notice. I fled the big city for orange tinted skies of the high deserts with my most trusted group of friends. Circling around my projects, prospects and fears, I received a call from a college advisor. I could feel his disappointment through my outdated, palm-sized iphone 5s screen. “Where are you?” We both knew I fucked up big time. I didn’t know how to process, let alone explain why. “I’m in New Mexico.” The college was counting on me to keep strong ties to what seemed like a nearly-impossible internship opportunity (without the help of prestigious and expectant alumni who literally created this job in the first place).
Like any dream that paints lucidity, the lighting around me was dim. Have you ever woken up at 2pm on a rainy sunday– after a long night of jumping and running, dancing and bruising, crashing and burning for no goddamn reason other than to feel like you are in control of your happiness? That’s what the lighting is like in a not-quite-lucid lucid dream. Gray, damp, and dingy- I need a screen to protect me from the world. The summer is finally coming to an end and the sun isn’t friendly. The accumulation of dust bunnies hide in the crevices of a kitchen counter- Next to it, there is a humming dehumidifier replacing an early bird’s song. It is soothing to not feel so alone.
“I’m so sorry, I can explain.” His face was planted on one of those GPS radars they had in airplane movies set before the 2000s, think Conair. The secrets of my subconscious are out on a black and green grid where he could see my plight, maybe he understood that my actions weren’t ill-willed but a cry for help. “That doesn’t change the fact that they’ll never take another antioch student now.” Near the end of the phone call, I ask him if it would be inappropriate to text my work supervisor- while I text said supervisor. “Not only is it inappropriate, it’s too late. They’ve hired a graduate student to take on the task. They’re not gonna change their minds just because you regret your decision to leave.”
I don’t remember if he hung up or if I did, but I cried once the call ended. I cried one of those hearty chunky sobs. Coyote ugly howling, I’m hungry enough to swallow the air and ready to feel a little less empty. The mountains are purple and red, the earth is loose under my feet and I look for the people I came with. I walk around a newly abandoned town with those fake adobe buildings you see in Santa Fe, only the gutters are turquoise and not brown. Timeless thoughts when the anxiety kicks in: I hope I made the right decision in tagging along. It seems like my new friends and old friends are getting along but this isn’t what I wanted for myself.
SPLICE— dream sequences don’t make sense at all until they do. My job…. Do you wanna hear about my job? Ok so, I work on 8th ave, excuse me.. Eighth Avenue. It’s a big blob of a building, shiny with five-two-oh hanging up on what I’m guessing is the right side of the 11th to 13th floor. I hope the people working in those offices have at least some sort of view of the busy-busy streets and catch a sliver of sunlight.
It might have been a Wednesday or a Thursday, all I know is I slept worried. From my pillow, my eyes are projecting a holographic- techno-advanced (let’s call it savvy)- message from my supervisor who is a Sagittarius. So, it all makes sense to me. Or maybe, I’m on a gurney in an emergency room, under the kind of light that only allows you to see a floating figure in a somewhat indeterminate situation. No one is sure whether or not you will actually live through this. All I know is, I slept worried. “You need to S-P-L-I-C-E. Splice Michelle. Look at what you’ve got and slice it, cut it up, and make those dimensions into cubes. Side by side, diagonally- link the photos and prints and all those weird questions you have onto a timeline that you can take apart, rearrange, and put together again. Almost like it’s destruction- ripping everything apart, is itself a new artifact. If you know it well enough, you’ll be able to put it back together again.”
What does that mean to me, a twenty-four year old who’s dying wish is to pass linear algebra?

Open Gallery in Midtown

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Michelle is a multi-lingual self-design student focusing on Anthropology, Linguistics, Philosophy, and Post-Colonial Theory. They currently reside in Chicago where they work as a legal assistant.

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