Friday, July 15, 2011

Counting Sheep

     I'm a dreamer. I'm talking vivid, in your face, hard core dreamer. I'm NOT talking about things I aspire to do, because I usually make those things happen. I'm talking about the stories I create in my brain while my eyes are closed. My dreams feel so real that sometimes when I awake, I can't decipher past reality from dream. They feel like real memories; a type of memory that even feels more factual than a previous night's drunken events, if you know what I mean. It sometimes worries me that one day I'll be a crazy person like what happened to Leonardo DiCaprio on Shutter Island. I'm well aware that there are published books in the world about analyzing these subconscious illusions, but I'd rather just shake it off and try to pretend that I'm normal. I always try to recap my dreams with Patrick, who already thinks I'm crazy because I can remember almost every single thing that happened after I wake up. . . . . .and most of the time, they're not good things.
     For starters, my husband almost never behaves himself in my dreams.  (Let me just set the record straight that we have an amazing relationship to the point that it's odd and maybe a little unbelievable to some people.) I have spent many a morning so angry at him for what he did to me in my dream the night before. (He doesn't seem to think it's fair to have to apologize for what he did in his dream, but sometimes it's the only way I can get over it.) Two nights ago, for instance, he came home and told me he cheated on me. Just once! Since it was only once, I should just forgive him, no problem. I was so angry and pissed that it completely ruined my sleep and woke me up. Now it's double whammy anger material: cheat on me, and ruin my sleep! What a jerk (the Patrick in my dream of course, not in real life. So I called him at work immediately after waking to tell him about it so he could apologize and assure me it wasn't real.) The real kicker is in my dream I told the girl, I knew it wasn't real and my husband would never do such a thing and I completely trusted him despite rumors. . . and then Patrick came home and told me it was true. IF he's not cheating on me, he's left me behind somewhere and I have no way to contact anyone. (The real life Patrick seems to think that maybe I want to be mad at him sometimes, and because he never does anything wrong, I have to dream stuff up. . . . . . . . sounds like a load of bull to me.) 
     Second, the people in my dreams are often times people I know, in familiar situations, so it further blurs the line between reality and dream. Since I was a little girl I've had this nightmare that I'm at my original childhood home and when I go outside to look for my father, he is frozen into a stone statue. I try to ignore the fact, but he crumbles into a million pieces. I immediately search for my mother to later find she is an elephant and can't give me a hug because she only has a trunk. So I go in search for someone else and find my grandmother sitting in a rocking chair, rocking slowly back and forth and singing while staring into space, completely ignoring me. (For another record, no one in my family has ever given me any reason to feel like I may become abandoned at any time in my life that I can remember. I don't ever recall an existing fear of such, and I've never been scared to be on my own.)
     Third, I have dreams sometimes that I beat people up, only for justified reasons, occasionally sending them to be hospitalized as a result. I've gone to the hospital to see for myself and I never think they're injured enough for treatment and bully them, calling them babies and fakers. (I've never been a bully! Feisty sometimes, but never a bully, I swear!)
     Lastly, those things are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to my crazy dream memories. I write songs, go for runs, meet people, travel. . . . . . . it's basically like living a second life, except it's not. . . . All in a night's work!
     So why do I continue to torture myself with nightmares of abandonment, betrail, and violence? Does anyone else do this? Do I need brain surgery? Do I watch too many movies?!?!

** And I actually never count sheep. I can just close my eyes and fall asleep immediately. It's curse of a gift I have. **

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