I dreamed I was the reason that my mom died. And Chloe. For the uninitiated, Chloe’s the dog I gave my mom for Christmas when I was 19. She now lives with me because my mom was murdered 5-1/2 years ago, and she is my heart and skin and bones. I spoil her rotten and she’s wonderful and can never die.
I don’t recall how I killed my mother, but I’d killed Chloe with neglect—I’d left her outside with no water. (I killed a guinea pig this way when I was 12.) Now my mother and Chloe were angry zombies, à la Stephen King’s Pet Semetary. My brother, my husband, and I were living in my grandmother’s house, and outside, the Mom and Chloe zombies threatened us. I somehow locked my mother in a shed across the street, and I knew she would have to be destroyed, and that I would have to do it.
I confessed to my little brother that her death was my fault, and then I told him that she was locked up and needed to be blown up with some C-4.
I don’t remember any other details of the dream, but this is what matters: the feeling of saying to my brother, “I have to tell you something…”
And then the feeling, when the shed exploded, that I had lost her all over again.
Me: Shut up bad-child-actor critic in my head!
: Also, someone’s just published a memoir about their mother’s death, and the market’s flooded. You’re wasting your time. Get a real job. That’s what this dream was about.
Me: Her mother died of cancer, and mine was murdered. Also, I found her body. A lot of other stuff happened that I need to tell people about – and in my voice, too. There won’t be anything else like it.
Me: Et tu, Undead Cat? Et tu?
Me: I was hoping the right editor would help me. You know, like Maxwell Perkins. Someone who believes in what I’m trying to do and helps me assemble it.
Me: Oprah would love my book, Pennywise! She’s exactly the person who would love it.
Me: Stupid clown. You’ll see. I’ll finish it. And I will find peace. And I will write that novel about the pony running for mayor. (Spoiler alert: he trends high in the Gallop Polls. Ba dump bump.)