One of my former coworkers is this sweet, thoughtful Korean woman who was really excited about my pregnancy. One of the first questions she asked was if I had any dreams, because she was super into knowing about pregnancy dreams. There is one.
I think I was about two thirds of the way pregnant? Maybe? Somewhere in the tail end of the second trimester, I had a strange dream. Pregnancy dreams are an experience all in their own, and I already have pretty intense* dreams. To the point where I take medication to control them.
But one night I had this powerful, incredible dream where I was visited by a bear. I was walking my dog Lyra on a beautiful path through the woods when I noticed something in the undergrowth off the path a ways. We stepped off the path to investigate, and I could see brown fur through the brambles. I could see it was a huge bear through the thicket and it was scary enough for me to slowly back away.
The next thing I knew, I was standing in my apartment. For those who haven’t seen it, my apartment was one long rectangle, with a narrow hallway from the front door that fed into the main living space. I heard a scratching at the door, which was unlatched. I could see huge claws, each the size of fingers, curling around the door and pushing it open. I backed away and before I knew it, there was this enormous bear sitting at the end of the hallway, right on the cusp of my living space. This bear was beyond enormous. It was totoro sized. Bigger. It filled the whole spaceat the end of the hallway, before our apartment opens up into the living room.
I was paralyzed. Not afraid, exactly, just overwhelmed by the enormity. Uneasy that there was an enormous bear, sure, but also baffled thinking about how on earth I would be able to get it out–there’s no way it would fit through the door.
I stared at the bear for a while, taking it all in. The whole time, the bear seemed half asleep, not paying attention. I walked up to it, and held out a hand. It was the scariest moment of my life, thinking about touching the bear. In the end I didn’t, but I remember staring at those long claws, wondering what would happen. Would the bear react? Would it be angry? Would it let me?
I woke up and it was still the middle of the night. Everything was so quiet. The whole apartment seemed to be holding its breath. I felt calm and serene and it was one of the few moments in my pregnancy (and since) that I felt a faith in what was happening, a belief that what would be, would be. And it would be fine.
(To end on a silly note, my BIL is absolutely in love with bears and dream me remembered this. So, yeah, the dream ended with me pulling out my phone and slowly raising it to take a photo of the bear to send to him.)
*re: cripplingly terrible, unrelenting, recurring nightmares