Not sweet dreams.

I just had the worst dream. I tend to document dreams so I can look up symbols later.

I was working in Community Based mental health with kids. There was a client I’d been assigned, young teenage male, deplorable physical condition and obviously beaten down. Dad wouldn’t let anyone from police or children’s services the house, but he thought i was some kind of nanny and was “interested” in me so he let me come stay for a “trial”. I was basically undercover.

There are 7+ kids ranging in age from 17 to 4 or so. No one would speak about where mom had gone. So I went in as a “nanny” let him think I was there to be courted, all the time really assessing the kids and the house. Kids have no clean water, barely have food or clothes, never allowed to leave the house no one is cleaning – mom is nowhere, not mentioned. Dad controls EVERYTHING. He is eating, he has clothes. What anyone else has is up to him.

My male supervisor comes out one day while dad is at work to get an update on the case. I sit outside and talk to him, tell him how bad it is – there are neighbors watching. When dad is getting close, my supervisor leaves and I go back inside and go back to my normal schedule…but dad had gotten weird. Tense. Silent. Cold. I’m trying to act normal getting dressed, thinking I’m just going to wait for my supervisor to send cops and then the kids will be safe. Dad is watching me. I’m acting nonchalant but my hackles rise.

But then i notice that dad has arranged the 7 ratty dining chairs in a row in the hallway. He’s strapping on some homemade looking militia gear, walking in and out of the room I’m in. One of the older teenage girls comes in, I grab a card from my purse, beg her to call supervisor. She says she will, she sounds sincere and her hands are shaking but I know she won’t. I grab my cell phone out of my bag to give to her and hear him at the door. I silently hide it in my skirt.

Dad commands me into the hallway, hands me a lengthy letter on yellow legal paper all folded up. Commands me to sit down, look at the empty chairs and read. He starts calling the kids into the bedroom, they’re coming. They’re terrified. One of the boys has wet himself. They don’t look at me. He’s carrying a strap with nails driven through one end. He tells me to look at those chairs and think about what I’ve done – he’s right by my ear, his voice a cold, hate-filled whisper. I can feel his spit on my ear.

As kids go into the room (including my client who is silently sobbing and had just prior confessed to me that he hadn’t slept in two weeks, is bleeding rectally, and has no clothing that fits him) I glance at the letter – I can’t focus to read, I’m terrified, but words jump out at me. It seems to be written to me but it’s calling me “April Rain” which is most assuredly not my name. I see whore. I gave you a chance. My best intentions. Punished. I’m freaking out.

He starts beating a child in the room; the child makes no sound, but I can hear that belt ripping flesh. He’s going to hurt them…he’s going to kill me. I know he is. I remember my cell phone!! I whip it out, dial 911….there’s a long recording. They have me on hold, for fucks sake!! Desperate I’m hitting buttons trying to get through, but I can hear his foot steps coming. I fumble “end” and desperately hide the phone under my thigh on the chair.

He comes up to me, stands in front of me; there’s blood spatter on his sleeves, I don’t look up. He tightens some kind of leather strap on his arm, tells me in that cold, flat voice that this is my fault – I’m doing this to his kids. Asks if I’m ready, maybe my client (who dad thinks is just my favorite) is next. Says he wonders if I fucked him, too. My blood runs cold, I’m sick. I know right then when it comes to my turn, he’s for sure going to kill me. Before that moment, my fear was for the kids alone. He goes back into the room.

The 17 year old girl is heading toward the room. I call out quietly, show her my phone. I’m begging her to call my supervisor or just 911 – anyone. She stands, frozen, fearful, shaking her head. She’s not wanting to hurt me, but she doesn’t want to die for helping me. I see this. I dial 911 again and she starts to panic, whispering frantically about who am I calling, why, no you can’t please!! She’s crying. I tell her I’m leaving this house or I’m calling the cops. I’m very firm. Something flickers in her eyes – she goes into the room where my bags are.

Her dad asks what the fuck she thinks she’s doing, turns like he’s going to come for her. She hisses that she’s getting my purse. He looks angry and heads toward me – I hold up my phone showing an active call with 911, hoping he can’t hear the recording playing. Dad freezes. The girl silently gives me my keys and my purse – the rest I don’t care about – and with the phone tight in my hand, I turn and rush down the stairs, out to my car. The four year old is following me, yelling at me. “Don’t you call my daddy a racist!” I don’t turn to address her, I’m not staying to argue with her. I tell her that I never called him that, and I leave – she stands in the door, still screaming.

I get into my car, lock it. The phone has lost signal – I’m crying, begging the phone to work, my hands are shaking. I’m not away free yet and I’m terrified for my client. I try to start the car; I’ll get a little distance, call my manager to call the cops. The car turns over but doesn’t start…it’s been sitting too long. I cry out, begging God to help me. Praying Dad doesn’t hear the engine fail and realize I can’t get away. I dial 911, try the key again…

And wake up. I have the MOST intense, vivid, real, random dreams.

2 thoughts on “Not sweet dreams.

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