I usually have conscious dreams. Not going to give you a long and boring explanation, but in those, you know you’re dreaming and sometimes manipulate the situations to your convenience.
Last night, after a very long and complex dream, I saw two Mayas almost at the end of it. Maya Angelou was known for her wit and depth. Maya Rudolph (of SNL fame) is a comedian. The first Maya is dead, the other alive. Before seeing them, I was in this corridor plastered with pictures, as if someone had put up the ones that come with calendars and used them to cover the walls. Maya Angelou was in one of those pictures as if it was a postcard from Machu Picchu.
A moment later, I see two women coming through double doors (like the ones in hospitals), and here comes Maya R guiding Maya A by her arm and saying, “Say Hello, granny. Say Hello to everyone, granny.”
Lucid as I was, I knew Maya A was dead in real life but not in my dream. Still, by the way she looked at the people and her demeanor something told me she had dementia (aka Alzheimer), and Maya R was trying to keep her cheerful and nice to others.
Nevertheless, Maya A was silent. She stoically walked past the other people around, but when the two passed by me, she said, “Good Night” with a nod and in a clear, crisp voice that didn’t have anything to do with Maya R’s cute attempts at communication.
Some other things happened in my dream after that.
I woke up mostly centered in the episode with the two Mayas.
I realized that, in my dream, Maya A, who had been a great mind in life, couldn’t be anything else than what she truly was. Amid a situation where you lose your memories and identity, she was holding desperately onto that last shred of her true self, avoiding acting like a mindless puppet.
I don’t think Maya R was trying to be cruel. I think she was just doing what she thought was right to help her patient (to me she was an orderly, or nurse or a hospital volunteer), and I’m pretty sure a grandmother could go all cutesy for her grandchildren, but in very specific situations and not as a way of continuous behavior.
(I don’t know, I’m not a grandmother…)
There are a lot of things to be analyzed from my dream: the calendar pictures, Maya at Machu Picchu, the hospital doors, why a comedian, etc.
The moral I receive of this encounter is simple, though. We need to be truthful and honest with ourselves no matter what, when, or where. Sometimes we accommodate to the intentions or actions of those around us, those “guiding” us, in detriment of our own personality. There are norms and conventions to live around others, and those are fine; we need them to not drown in chaos. Still, we have enough leeway to be who we really are (once we know who we REALLY are— ‘cause some people don’t).
Nowadays we live in a world of false fame and herd behavior. Our society’s role models are perhaps models but not the best roles to imitate. Our children aspire to be “instantly” famous, forgetting true accomplishments come from hard work and consistency.
Nobody is perfect, and yet that’s all we want to look like: the hundred selfies before the ONE that appears the best to be posted. These idyllic lives where we travel and dine and have beautiful, well-behaved families and pets are a surreal version of life that doesn’t have anything to do with what happens in our day to day realities. But that’s the face we most give to the “social” world to be accepted and cherished. To be embraced by people who live so far away from us that without technology we would never have been on their radars.
I’m not saying that sharing your good moments is bad. You have the right to travel, dine, and be pretty. I certainly do. My concern here is how many of those moments are real, and not fabricated images to keep our “social” status. True, I’m not going to start posting pictures of me when I just woke up, looking crazy and with bad breath (yeah, you can see bad breath in pictures), but I’m going to try to enjoy the moments I have for myself. To live in the moment with those around me, instead of waste time thinking how I’m going to look for those who weren’t there.
Yes. We want to share our happy moments with others, especially when we are away from our families and close friends, and Social Media is a way to keep those parts of ourselves updated; let’s just not overdo it.
Here, I could add a “Namaste,” but I know better than that.