- I was hired to work for a family with 11 children. The mom was very pregnant w the 12th.
- The house was in the Poconos, I think, and had a sprawling white porch. The mountain views were breathtaking. Blue and snow-capped and soaring. Lots of windows to see them through.
- I didn't see any other houses around. Of course not. It was probably some kind of weird compound.
- Figgy came to live with me there, too. She was 13 or 14 in one part of the dream, and about 6 or 7 in another [referenced in #13].
- An exotic dark-haired young woman [maybe 30 years old?] who was expecting her first child also lived there. She was a caretaker for the kids, too. She was wearing a beautiful pink mohair sweater. [I know where this detail came from. Yesterday, I popped into Le Willow 83, the fashion boutique on North Willow Street in Montclair. I saw a delicious mohair sweater that was not in my size, too small, and that I could not afford now even at 50 percent off.] She played piano and the mom said she hoped I would get to hear it there sometime [if I was lucky].
- I have no clue about the father of the young woman's baby.
- The dad of the house was Amish, with a beard and eyeglasses.
- The details emerged gradually: I was supposed to work from 7 a.m. until 1 a.m. every day; no days off.
- I don't know what the pay was.
- Some of the children were adopted and/or had been foster children. Some had special needs. A couple had cocoa-colored skin. Some were teens. It was really hard for me to remember their names in the dream and now that I have been awake for an hour, I cannot remember any of them.
- The mom was telling me about her organic cotton maternity top, the buttery lotion she was massaging into her belly--and the work she expected of me.
- She and the other young expectant mom were talking about how they could feel their babies kicking.
- The dad was showing me how to run the dishwasher. (I guess an Amish family would not have a dishwasher, but he had Amish principles.) At first I thought I had to wash everything by hand. He was so organized that the little dishwasher soap packs were in baggies for the week.
- He prepared the meals. Some of the kids got lucky--randomly--with blueberries on their plates next to a scoop of oatmeal. Some got half a cracker sandwich [with cheese] next to the oats. There wasn't enough of everything to go around.
- It got weird(er) when the mom said I should be sure Figgy dressed appropriately. Oh, she picks out her own outfit every day, I said. She said I would have to check it each morning because nothing should be too close-fitting or revealing.
- On my first or second day, the mom and dad were heading out to shop, taking one little baby and leaving me with the other 10 + Figgy.
Oh, and I just remembered, maybe I dreamt about this family burden because I am left unsupported by Dan this weekend to get ready for family bday pizza and cake at 5 p.m. today with a few guests, including Sis....he is under a big book writing deadline....has been logging a lot of hours in coffee shops writing....I'm under a big pots and pans [and essay] writing deadline.....but our house is a mess and guess who carved out time to do two loads of dishes and supervise two play dates yesterday? Me. I am angry and resentful. At the first play date, they begged me to do a "Chopped" competition and so I did it for the two of them. At the second, I turned my back to make the brownie base for the Baked Alexa and the partners in crime made a huge mess with slime, that gooey craze I hate. I made them clean it up, with #resistance, but I still had to help because it was horrendous. I am so grateful that my sitter, Elaine, is coming in an hour so I can go to monthly restorative yoga class. Figgy works all day Saturdays and Sundays so I can't rope her in.
Please note, though I used the term Nightmare Note, I honor the women who choose to have many children, like my mom's lifelong best friend, Elaine Bergamini, who had 9; my dear friend Anne's mom, who had 8; and Liz's mom. But this was not a happy-family kind of dream.