I like the way I dream

When we were little, my sister and I shared a room. For years we shared a room, which meant for years I would wake up and my sister would regale me with stories of her dreams. She had such epic adventures in her dreams that it became a family thing. One morning she spent an hour telling me about some dream that involved Star Wars and I bet to this day she remembers it. Maybe not the whole dream, per say, but at least that she had it because I used to ask her if she remembered it a lot. It was one of my favorites (although I couldn’t give you any details for the life of me).

I think that the act of telling your dreams to someone when you wake up makes you remember them more. Someone told me that’s how it works–every morning, try and think about what you dreamed. You won’t remember right away (if you had trouble remembering your dreams before this, at least) but the m ore you ask yourself that question when you wake up, the easier it is to remember them.

David has been waking up to me telling him all about the epic adventures I’ve been having in dreamland, and not only am I having more complicated dreams, but I’m remembering the old ones that much clearer.

I don’t drive. I don’t have a license and driving leaves me feeling so anxious my hands shake. Thinking about driving a stick can actually trigger a panic attack, which I fully realize is super ridiculous. It’s not so much a secret in my life, but there it is. I always joke (mostly seriously) that it’s rooted in the recurring nightmares I had when I was younger. After my parents divorced when I was ten, I had six years of almost weekly nightmares about driving through forests and roads with no control over the vehicle. I once started writing a post about this and after I hit the 1,000 word mark detailing the different versions of the dream I decided to scrap the whole thing.

People can be a bit skeptical about the longevity of my recurring dreams, but that isn’t the only example. During my middle school years (ish) I would have a yearly dream where I was traveling through a video game-like world. It was pretty badass and terrifying, usually because I died at the end, but the next year when I had the dream again I would remember the whole layout up until the point where I died, and every year I would get that much further in the adventure until eventually I reached the end. In an ending reminiscent of Ender’s Game, I found myself in a grassy field, surrounded by gentle looking trees in the distance and a fountain with pure crystal blue water in the center.

I never had the dream after that, but I’m pretty sure I could recreate most of the map right now if I sat down with a pen and a paper for an hour.  I also have dreams that take place in the same map, and I think my brain created an entire state-sized layout (small state, like Rhode Island or Maine, not like Oregon or Colorado)  for different scenarios to play out. The map stays more vivid than the stories that play out inside it and I’ve even made a few sketches for a full fledged map.

Last night I woke up from a weird nightmare (unfortunately nightmares are a pretty frequent thing in my sleep pattern, but I deal) where I was Mario running through Hazy Mazy cave only the bad guys looked like giant grasshopper creatures made entirely of bone the bad guys from Doom 3 and Dead Space mixed together. It was pretty terrifying because I kept dying, and even though I knew I had more lives and would just restart the level, dying was still absolutely terrifying.

I was about to end the post right there, but man that’s a weird place to end it. Seriously my dreams are pretty cool. They’re elaborate odysseys that take me an hour to go through each morning and every time I do, I remember being eight and sharing a room with my sister, listening to her epic dream time adventures and wondering why my dreams were so boring in comparison.

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3 thoughts on “I like the way I dream

  1. This reminds me of this one recurring dream I had when I was a kid where the evil witch from Snow White kept telling me to go into the forest and I could never say no and I died every time. One day I told my mom about it and she just said “why don’t you tell the witch no, you’re not going into the forest with her”. That BLEW my five year old mind, and that night when I had the dream I said to the evil witch “actually, I don’t feel like going in that evil forest with you” and she said “okay” and then we skipped off into the fields where there were rainbows and lollipops and had a grand old time. I’ll always remember how weirdly empowering that felt to my little self, even though it was just a dream– I was like, I CAN stand up for myself!

    • Oh that’s so awesome! Feeling empowered in a dream is just sooooo satisfying. I didn’t mention it, mostly because I figured I rambled on enough, but I actually stopped having those car nightmares when I first learned how to drive. I had the same driving nightmare after my first lesson, but then I looked down in the car and was all “Okay, I’m going to put the car in drive and gently hit the brakes”. I didn’t have the nightmares again until David started teaching me to drive stick, but it was only the one.

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