Insomnia: What writers call sleep.
You know, that thing we do when the rest of the world is in bed, while visions of nightmares creep through your head. Then again…maybe that’s just me. I’m one of the lucky people who remembers a lot of my dreams. (Sarcasm: see notes below). I’ve been on a particularly mean streak of nightmares lately. Being chased, fighting, losing loved ones, suffocating, paralysis. Always violent, always real. While psychology professionals have spent years trying to explain dreams and their meanings, I spend sleepless nights trying to figure out the reasons of my own. It isn’t only nightmares that intrigue me. Dreams in general have always been something I have looked for meaning in. It is a popular belief that dreams are a natural way for our brains to cope with the stresses of everyday life. I am inclined to agree to a certain extent. Running from something is common. It would make sense that in your life, there is something you just don’t want to do so you are trying to find a way to avoid it. Okay, yeah, that sounds like a sure-fire way to explain a nightmare.
But what about other dreams? The kinds that are a mess of random. How am I to interpret dreaming of an elementary crush, in a cabin that doubles as a motor home, that expands as the dream continues, involving layers of people in different stages of age, dress, and activity, that eventually turns into a barn, where I look for the keys to a car in a basement after picking vegetables in a garden out the back door where I am in a dirty suit “remembering when” with an old man while the babies grandma is trying to steal its pacifier only to realize the baby is gone where I am once again taken to a loft where I offer to make them breakfast?
It’s like comparing each thought to a granule of sugar that gets dumped in a cotton candy machine where it spins, melts, and meshes into something else entirely. Needless to say, I have written many short stories that have all, or partly been inspired by dreams. Most of it I choose to delete. My own way of getting rid of excess thought baggage. Much like the pensive in Harry Potter where one could pull out threads of consciousness in order to study or share them at a later date. However, I think I have decided I might like the idea of a dream journal. It’s another avenue to pull from when writing. Could be good for inspiration, or merely fill in the dead space of a scene. Either way, it is something I usually overlook or dismiss. Creative writing is nothing more than a dream. Whether awake or asleep, our minds our painting us a picture. Even if that picture resembles a Picasso, doesn’t mean you won’t find in significance in it.
What do your dreams tell you?
Sarcasm: Made you look!