"Well, I passed it. I can't believe it. I finally passed it, honey." Steven held the certificate for the Barr exam in his hand and kissed it.
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"Wow. Congratulations Steven! I knew you could do it. That's all you've been talking about for the past six months." Jessica sighed under breath.
"I know honey. I just couldn't help it. I wanted this so badly. This has been my life long dream. You know, to be a child psychiatrist."
She smiled at him.
"Well, where should we go to celebrate the big day? I mean I do get to be with you today, right?"
A look of doubt crossed his face.
"I guess that means no. I should have known. You probably need rest, right? You always need something...I should get the hint. These kids are more important. Jessica, why didn't you just wake up several months ago when he kept brushing you off."
"Honey...please...that's not fair...I..."
"Stop! Just stop right there. Don't say one more word. Not one more. Steven I cared about you. But I am not going to wait around on the bookshelf for a day when you notice or glance up. Goodbye.Goodbye forever"
She walked off and threw her, "Congratulations Steven!" card in the trash can near by.
"I can't believe I can't compete with a bunch of snotty nose toddlers." she cried to herself.
The next morning he was up bright and early. This was the time he usually called his beloved Jessica. He called her. The phone rang...no answer...he let it ring some more...no answer...He just listened to her voice on the answering machine, hoping she would pick up, but knowing that he had been a fool and would most likely never hear from her again.
He was officially a pyschiatrist. He was still putting up his awards and certificate when his first patient walked in.
"Hello there...and your name is..." Steven reached to shake his hand. He wouldn't touch him.
"My name is Daniel." the boy said softly.
"Are you scared Daniel?" Steven asked.
"Are you scared of your mommy, Daniel?"
He held up a flash card of a woman rocking her infant.
He liked using flashcards with the young ones. This made it easier for them to communicate what was bothering them.
Daniel shook his head no.
"Are you scare of your daddy, Daniel?"
He held up a flash card of a man and a younger boy playing ball.
Daniel shook his head no once more.
The next card shook Daniel up a bit. He ran behind the couch. It was a card we usually show children who are afraid of monsters under the bed. It was a dark figure, holding a pitch fork with no eyes.
"Are you scared of a monster under the bed, Daniel?"
"No. In my dream."
"Times up. The school is here for Daniel, Dr. Stevens."
I waved good bye to Daniel. What did he mean, "in my dream." What kind of monster was tormenting this child? What had caused him to withdrawal in school?
Later we had a girl from another school.
"My name is Sarah."
"I hear you've been acting out in school, Sarah."
"Oh, you mean what I did to Polly Ann, don't you."
"I think we both know that was a mean thing to do, right?"
"My dreams told me to cut off her pig tails and besides they will grow back.
The goblin guys in my nightmares told me to do the bad things. I know I can get in bad trouble, but..."
"Did you do other bad things Sarah...What other things did these green gobblin guys tell you to do honey? This is very important I need you to tell me, ok..."
"I want my daughter out now...come along Sarah." Her mother pulled her away quickly. I watched as a freckled girl with long red hair was dragged away kicking and screaming. She, too, had nightmare problems. What did all of this mean?
"Hi! My name is Donald! I'm only here because the school told me I had to come here or go to Juvi." He stared me down, trying to read me, trying to break me.
"So...what do we talk about? Hey you have ms pac man." Steven noticed his attention was very limited.
"I love this game. Can I...?"
Steven stopped him in his tracks.
"Back to the couch. You can play if you answer me one question."
"Oh yea? Well, what's that?" He started heading near the game.
"When was the last time you were hugged?" He stopped dead in his tracks and looked up at Steven. Tears trickled down his dirty cheeks.
"My mom ignores me. My dad is a chronic drunk. You tell me. I have to take care of my brother, Trevor and my sister, Lizzie. They are all I have in this world. Nobody could care less about me, Dr. Stevens. Nobody." He wanted to break down. He wanted to give him a hug right then and there. He hate the fact that he wasn't allowed. Most of these kids needed love.
"Donald, you need to stand strong for your brother and sister you hear." Steven spoke up. "They are your world. You matter to them and them to you. That's all that matters."
"I know...I know...Sometimes I feel so alone. Apart from the real nightmare in my life, I have actual nightmares of bats all the time and of my family leaving me and becoming an actual family without me. It's really my worse fear. I wake up to reality, which is not much better. Then I am ridiculed at school for my size and the fact that I want to be somebody so I put all my efforts into studying and working and grades. So I am a "Nerd" and social outcast. I wish things could be better and I could leave this town with my brother and sister and never return. I got into a fight at school. That's how I ended up here. Nobody believes in me Dr. Stevens. Nobody."
"I believe in you, Donald. Your brother and your sister believe in you. If you continue to study and work hard, you can be whatever you want to be."
"Thank you Dr. Stevens."
He came over and gave me a gentle hug. I couldn't help but hug him back. I had gotten through and I was going to do something with his trust.
"Well, good night Dr. Stevens. I'll see you tomorrow." Said Susie the secretary.
"Thanks Suzie. Good night."
Steven tried to call his Jessica again but the phone had been disconnected. His
Jessica had left him forever. He cried.
That night he thought about all of the children he had seen that day: Daniel,
Sarah and Donald and between them all they had one thing in common, nightmares.
How could ease those nightmares with his therapy? Or could he? Maybe he could develop or think of a new form of therapy that could revolutionize all the nightmares these little ones suffer after all these nightmares were the source to all the evils of the world. If he could find a way to reach them through there dreams that would be like a pandora's box in the dream reality. That night he fell soundly asleep.
"Huh? Where am I? Am I awake?"
"You're asleep silly. Remember you wanted an answer to your waking problem?
You wanted to revolutionize your own therapy. Well what about waking them up while they are asleep and helping them to see each dream symbol for what it really is, instead of a scary clown...maybe it represents there need for laughter in their own waking life."
"Right. Hey this means I can fly, right."
"You can if you believe you can."
And he flew... for a few seconds...then he woke.
But that few seconds was just enough for him to get an idea that would revolutionize his world and the world of psychiatry.
This is only one chapter...wanted to see what people thought of it first before I finished it! Please post your comments! I want to get Stephen Kings to help me with some of the horror dream part!
Lisa M. Hunt