My Cleaning Lady Caught Me Peeing in the Sink Last Night

Peeing in the sink.
Peeing in the sink. This confirms you can find anything on-line. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

It was awfully humiliating, but luckily it’s not what you think.  In my last post, I described how my intuition helps me out in the form of recurring dreams.  This peeing incident was just a different recurring theme making its rounds in my head.   From plane crashes to climbing down steep mountainsides, these dreams always have a message to deliver to me.  Once I get the message and act on it, the dreams move on.

I’m afraid that things are getting even freakier than plane crashes and fear of heights. 

In this latest series of dreams, I have to pee.  Sometimes I’m sitting on a toilet while a friend is whispering something in my ear.  While this seems like perfectly acceptable behavior in my dream, that’s a little too close for comfort in my waking life.   Sometimes I enter a public bathroom, and as hard as I try to pick a stall, a series of nonsensical stuff happens that prevents me from getting into one. Or every bathroom stall is filthy and overflowing with the kind of crap you wouldn’t want me to describe here.  Or sometimes the toilet is too high for this germaphobe (that’s me) to squat over it (because I refuse to sit, you know.)  In case you were wondering, only once did I wake myself up peeing, thinking I was on the toilet.  I caught it instantly, so there were no soiled sheets.  I swear, it only barely happened once.

Dirty Toilet
Dirty Toilet (Photo credit: Sybren A. Stüvel)

Have I mentioned yet how awful this dream is?  First, it’s physically uncomfortable.  It doesn’t feel like a relief or a release.  Second, it’s a total mind f*ck.  Every time I sit on a toilet while I’m awake, I second guess whether it’s okay to let it all go or not.  And even worse than those 2 things, the mental images in the dream are just plain nasty.

So what the heck does this nightmare mean anyway?

According to, this dream depicts the need to “relieve” oneself from burdensome feelings, or fear of being judged and criticized for these feelings. I better figure this one out soon, so I can end this misery STAT (that means now for those of you who don’t watch Grey’s Anatomy.)

Last week as I was reflecting on these dreams, the answers occurred to me, and I thought I would have to suffer through this awful experience no more.  But last night, my cleaning lady caught me peeing in the sink.  It was really embarrassing, and on top of that I had to wipe up the pee that was overflowing onto the floor, so I could hide this shameful act I had just committed.

Alas, I guess enlightenment and change don’t always come so easily.

So maybe if I confront the fears of being judged and criticized right here on my blog, I can end this dream once and for all.

(Photo credit: s_falkow)

When I left dentistry, I felt comfortable revealing my hidden true feelings about it because I no longer had to worry about my reputation or offending patients that I cared about.  (Besides, only about 20 people were supposed to read it anyway.)  Now I feel like I have to be really well-behaved when it comes to my new career.  By “well-behaved,” I mean that I can only say positive things about the livelihood, and I must avoid anything that could be offensive or even negative.  (Ever seen the movie PCU?  I’m talking about those extremes.)  While it may be more “appropriate,” that’s not real, and can actually be just phony.

Warning: weight loss is a sensitive issue for some.  The following content may offend (or even bore.) That is not my intention. If you are EASILY offended by others’ comments and will decide to make this about you and become defensive, just skip down to the bottom of this post, click the like button, and we’ll all be happy.

Warning (Photo credit: Elephant wearing striped pants)

Disclaimer:  I am simplifying a few of my many thoughts here with the intention of keeping this post as short as possible. Though I might not directly address it below, I do have compassion for people and their individual struggles, food addiction, and emotional eating issues.  I also know weight loss is a far more complex matter than what I am addressing here.  And dammit, it’s hard to be hungry and feel like you’re depriving yourself.

In case you’ve missed it, I run a weight loss program.  It’s a great fit for me because I love helping people change their lives and achieve improved health and weight loss.  I enjoy the day-to-day process of teaching them and strategizing how to make their lifestyle changes work for them.  That is fun stuff for me.  It’s all the stuff I enjoyed about Dentistry– teaching, consulting, and problem-solving.  Plus, I am passionate about food and healthy living.  But lately some thoughts and feelings have been surfacing; thoughts that I think I was hiding from myself.  (That seems to be the message of the dream, right?)

Some of the challenges of weight loss frustrate and sadden me.

This problem really stems from my desire to control everything around me: outcomes, people, their behavior.  I used to base my own success on other people’s results.  Old habits are hard to break, but I’m working on it and improving.  I hate to say this because I don’t want to believe it, but there are many people who just can’t do it.  They can’t lose weight, and they can’t change.  Even with the right tools and support, they continue to sabotage their success.  I help people with the daily challenges they might have adopting a new lifestyle, and I’ve noticed a common theme with the people who are successful at it.  They simply see a problem and find a solution for it.  To them, there is no other choice.  The solution always requires them to change, but a reasonable solution is available. (I’m talking about waking up 5 minutes earlier to eat breakfast; or carrying a healthy snack with them, so they don’t stop at the McDonald’s drive-thru.)  While I love these success stories, I sadly see some failures too.  The people who fail to reach their goals see every problem as insurmountable; to them the problem is so big, that it’s all they see.  I’m not saying the solutions are always easy, but they do always exist.

Are we willing to see solutions to our problems, or just excuses?  What sacrifices are you willing to make to achieve a desired result?  When it comes to your health, are you worth it? 

Sometimes I get so discouraged that I feel like I care about my clients’ health more than they do… even though I know that’s not always the case.  This is not new for me.  In the past, I often felt this same desire to control my dental patients, despite knowing that this mindset was all wrong.  I wanted what I thought (and often knew as a health care provider) was best for them.  The good news is things are different now.  Even though I acknowledge and write these feelings here, I admit this is only a small burden that occasionally blurs my outlook.  I am now more capable of grasping the idea that we each own our individual problems.  I recognize that the fact that I want to control other people is my problem, just as their diabetes and high cholesterol is their problem.  While I sometimes get discouraged, I try to remember that we are all doing the best we can.

But where is the sweet spot between caring and apathy?

Sweet Spot (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

  It’s easy to take the other extreme and think that I am simply providing the tools, and they can do what they want with it.  I tried that as a dentist, but I felt myself slipping into apathy.  My apathy was a defense mechanism that protected myself from being disappointed.  It is easier to not care than to feel disheartened, but it’s no way to live each day of your life.

This brings me to my next question.

Have you ever thought about WHY and HOW the weight loss industry is a billion dollar industry?

The industry thrives because of people’s inability to succeed.  How very sad.  I want my business to be successful because of the success it breeds, not because some poor soul has failed over and over and is looking for the “next best thing” in weight loss.  I don’t want to prosper because someone else fails.  Oh, there go my control issues again.

There.  I said it.  This was the hardest post I’ve ever had to write.  So can you please go away now, pee dreams?

It doesn’t end here.  Recently the airplane dream returned.  This time I’m in a crowded airport.  This is an indication of approaching a new departure in life.  Some new idea is taking off or is ready to take off.  This could be a new relationship, new career path, or new adventure.  Hmm…. who knows?  I have a feeling there may be even more excitement coming my way.

Until then, I’m curious to know: do you ever struggle with the balance between caring and apathy?  How do you handle it?


22 thoughts on “My Cleaning Lady Caught Me Peeing in the Sink Last Night

    1. RR– you would not want to see some of the other photos I found. They popped up in the search engine that WP uses to make it easier for you to find photos for your post. There was some raunchy stuff!

  1. I’m fascinated with how you’re working through your dream directives. Nice going. I’ll be especially interested in the resolution to your latest puzzle. I had a spate of toilet dreams some years ago — sitting on a potty in the middle of a park, for example. Is there release from exposure? Can’t wait to find out!

    1. Thanks, Kristy. I have also found it extremely fascinating. It’s so crazy how my brain is sending off all of these alarms to pay attention. I think going to the bathroom in public means that you feel a lack of privacy in a personal matter, or you are trying to mark your territory. Let’s hope I resolve this soon!

  2. Yes, I do struggle between apathy and caring. I think we all do, we’re human, not perfect. Some things I care about more than others though so I try to accept that and proceed forward. I also recognize that I have to tell myself it is okay. Do the best you can and move on. I trust that I can improve the things I work on. But I think that I have to leave other things for other people to work on. You can teach and provide all of the tools but in the end, it is up to your clients to desire, truly desire, to make that change. But what a wonderful life you show them they can have! I really am impressed about how you’ve made such a positive impact in those around you, your clients and friends both. You do good work, keep it up. Don’t worry about the little stuff, you’re already tackling something big 🙂

    1. Molly, you seem to have always found the perfect balance in your life. Your attitude has always been a great example for me! Thanks for the kind words and the great advice (that didn’t come off as advice– just perfect!) 😉

  3. Some folks just don’t have the drive and will to succeed. I’ve been exploring a new career path and attended an intense 8 day training/licensing class. I was shocked by the number of men in this class who did nothing but complain. One dude got up routinely to go outside for his constant smokes and then complained the instructor was going too fast and demanded a refund. At least half these guys were expecting this to be easy or handed to them and in the end found it to be too hard to persue much further.

    You can only help those willing to help themselves. Hope your dreams are resolved soon 🙂

    1. Isn’t that true in so many areas in life? I think it’s something we can all relate to on some level. The crazy thing is these “types” you describe are usually the ones to blame everyone else. Thanks, Ingrid!

  4. I definitely understand the need to constantly positive, upbeat, and vivacious to portray a certain image. Also, I DEFINITELY struggle with the precarious balance between caring and apathy—actually, specifically in regard to working out.

    I wish you the best of luck figuring out your dreams, though!

    1. Sometimes it’s a relief to just be real and expose the other side of things, and I think upholding an image can be really exhausting sometimes. We are much more complex than that, aren’t we?
      Ooh– the working out thing. That’s an interesting one. I’ve never seemed to have a problem with caring TOO much about that, 😉 but I can see how someone could put too much pressure on themselves to do it and then feel the need to have an equally extreme and opposite reaction of apathy. I guess even with exercise it’s about finding that sweet spot.

      Thanks, hope these crazy dreams don’t last too long. 🙂

  5. First off, how can I not click a post title like that? Brilliant!

    This is a great essay, wonderfully written with plenty of food for thought. No matter how good you are at what you do, no matter how hard you try, you can’t help someone that doesn’t really really want help. I think there are people who sign up for weight loss programs so that they can tell the world they’re doing something about it, they’re trying to lose weight, but for whatever reason, they secretly (or subconsciously?) don’t want to change. I believe the key to successful (and sustained) weight loss lies in the strength of the individual’s motivation.

    Let’s just hope that now that you’ve released those words, your ‘wet’ dreams will disappear 🙂

    1. Laura, I actually couldn’t wait for you to see this title! Thanks. I’ve obviously thought about it a lot, and I think there are so many factors that come in to play here. I think sometimes people don’t realize the sacrifice it takes to really make the changes. They think it’s going to be easier than it is, and the temptations can be so great that they lose the will to fight them. They also don’t realize that the changes are for life and that it will require constant work, or at least a change in mindset.

      Thanks for your thoughts, and I hadn’t thought of the “‘wet’ dream” thing. That’s funny. Though my spell check kept wanting me to say “whet the bed” instead of “wet the bed.”

    1. Thanks, Ganesh. I must make it clear that it was not me in that picture! I was amazed that I was actually able to find that photo on line. I mean, who does that?? But then again, there is a lot more weird stuff out there.

  6. I forget now how I even got to your site….I’m pretty certain it was over an hour ago!

    Oh That’s right… was the 10 reasons your dentist hates you too. I was writing a post for my oral health blog, because I too am a retiree from the clinical world and have gone over to the wellness side of things, but as an oral health coach instead of weight loss.

    When that post first went viral, I remember reading it, chuckling about it and thinking YES….someone’s speakin a language I understand, finally someone authentic is showing up! The first time I saw that post it was early morning and my day had just begun, but tonight I was ambly writing on two topics while somewhat floating thru cyberspace and the blogitty blog world when there it was again…..and all of the replies that followed. So of course I did what anyone else would do, I looked around to see who this mysterious person was….and low and behold it was a cute, young woman… my minds eye you were a man with a dark, full set of hair??

    By career or hobby, I am not a writer…..I am a 19 yr dental profession jack of all trades turned hygienist, but as fate would have it, I’ve been given the task of content creation for my new and oh so wonderful business venture. I have been writing for about a year or so, and am just starting to get a small feel for what it is that I am doing. It didn’t really even hit until just a few weeks ago when I went to the New Media Expo in Vegas. There I saw thousands of people that blog for…..passion?! I left inspired, ready to craft my story differently, passionately, purposefully, soulfully.

    Why do I tell you all of this? Because the words you write flow beautifully. They sink into my pores and get into my veins. I feel comforted and uncomfortable at the same time. I want to continue reading. I laugh at the things you say, because I too have lived them. I have had a love hate relationship with this career, mainly because the experiences I have experienced.

    Like you I am grateful that I learned how to communicate and help facilitate positive changes with people. This has come through years of shoving my foot down my own throat, and stepping on toes. At one point in time like everyone else in the dental world, I wanted to save the world one toothbrush at a time. I proved that jumping in front of people yelling look at me, look what I know, isn’t it great really didn’t work on people, and that “should”-ing on people didn’t help them whatsoever. People go where they feel understood and validated, learning this has helped me successfully help many people become independently healthy in regards to their oral wellness, which to me is the greatest gift I can give. It saddens me that the current model of dentistry holds patients hostage instead of giving them the freedom to be healthy…….and THEN I read that you are a Pankey-ite…..girl/dental crush confirmed.

    Forage on fellow renegade, I think I like your style!!

    1. Well aren’t we about to have a Lovefest here. What a pleasant surprise it was to wake up yesterday, kind of pissy and stuffy-headed from a cold that’s kicking my ass, to read such a lovely comment. I’m also not a writer. Never have been, and never have been confident that my writing was anything special. Heck, I’m still not sure of it, so when you described how you relate to my words (much more beautifully and eloquently than I ever could have,) you made my shitty cold disappear!! So thank you, thank you, thank you.

      And I’ll add that your description of your own experiences so perfectly captures many of the feelings I had for so many years– in a way I could never have described myself. I think you have a knack for writing yourself. I briefly checked out your site, and will go back there after this. I’m fascinated that you saw a problem with dentistry and created a solution for it. What a great need you are filling! So then I’m left thinking how did you ever come up with this idea? Are there others that do this? Amazing!

      Anyway, I’m off to check out your site. Thanks for spending time here and leaving your mark. Oh- also, you might check out Barry Polansky and his blog He loves dentistry, but often talks about the state of the current model and how much it can be improved. He’s also a Pankey-ite and wrote a book called The Art of the Examination. You might find his writing interesting. Oh, and girl/dental crush reciprocated.

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