I’ve had this dream before – I’m driving my car, and I get to a point where I have to stop on a steep hill, and I never recover momentum again. The car begins to coast backwards, and I’m completely unable to accelerate forward or stop the car from rolling backwards. Both the gas pedal and the brake pedal are useless. I start to get frantic – not terrorized, but frantic – when even the emergency brake doesn’t stop the car. However, it does seem to slow the momentum so that I’m not careening downhill, bound for an inevitable crushing blow against something or someone.
I think what prevents me from going into a screaming panic is the fact that I don’t seem to gain speed. I am going at a decent clip, though, so I am constantly wondering how this is happening, totally out of my control. Like a high-speed oscillating fan, I’m looking over one shoulder and then the other, and checking my mirrors, trying to master the art of driving defensively while going in reverse at 30-40 mph! I’m doing all I can to avoid hitting curbs, signs, fire hydrants . . . luckily no pedestrians are in the scene.
The interesting thing is, I sense that it’s never going to end terribly badly, that at whatever point the car decides to stop, I’ll be inconvenienced but unharmed. Deep down I know that the car knows what it’s doing, that it is programmed not to hit anything or anyone. And I also have the tiniest inkling that perhaps my attempts to steer and brake my way out of the situation are just a nuisance to the car, whose mission won’t be thwarted. It’s neither a fear-mongering nor malevolent mission, but one that is simply called for, for whatever reason. Perhaps I’m just supposed to loosen the grip on the steering wheel, make sure my seatbelt is securely fastened, and trust the trajectory. After all, I’ve had this dream before. I’ve never crashed, and I’ve always lived to tell the story.
An internet search on the meaning of this dream yielded the following interpretation by Ian Wallace (http://ianwallacedreams.com/faulty-brakes-out-of-control-car/): “When we dream about driving an out of control car backwards, there is something in our waking life where we feel we are not attaining the very high standards we have set ourselves. This is very often in the context of our career or profession. Faulty brakes suggest that you are not able to control situations as positively and decisively as you would like. No matter how much you try to slow things down, there is always something that seems out of control. Instead of trying to control all aspects of your waking life, just choose to control the aspects that are known and familiar to you. If the situation is actually unknown and unfamiliar, then you just have to accept that it cannot be fully controlled, only influenced or guided.”
If I didn’t know any better, I’d say Ian must have been riding in the back seat of my car for a long time, cuz he nailed it! How did he know that in the past month I’ve been mentally and spiritually wrestling with “what’s next?” after publishing and promoting my first book. The first royalties check, such as it was, has come and gone, and my book and I seem to have stalled at the top of the hill. The initial book launch is over, and I am looking for paying opportunities to keep both the book and me fed in order to regain forward motion.
According to Ian, and to my higher conscience, much of what happens with this book is out of my control, especially now that it’s “out there” in the world. I’ve known since I first began writing it that the book is alive, and for the most part I have honored the fact that it is actively promoting itself and reaching those who need it. The universe has told me quite a few times in my adult life, “If you take the initiative and say ‘yes’ to the mission, we’ll take care of the details.” Knowing that the universe is a lot smarter than I am and has a lot more resources at its fingertips than I do to make things happen, I have obeyed. And it has worked out beautifully, in its own due time, every time.
So I’ll entrust what I can’t control to the good-willed universe, and concentrate on what I can control . . . like posting a new blog on my website. . .
. . . and then going out to my garden to pull weeds and plant green beans.
(NOTE: Photo of driver is from the Internet. It’s not me, but the imagery is pretty close!)