I’ve always been a vivid dreamer.
My dreams are in color, I can remember small details, I always “know” when I am dreaming, and most of all… I’ve become very perficient at knowing how to wake myself up from a dream I don’t like.
I’m not sure how I figured out that last part. As a kid, I had a lot of nightmares, and my trick (back then) to waking up was first realizing I was dreaming, and then closing my eyes in the dream and pressing my belly button.
Viola! My bad dream cure.
Except sometimes it backfired (and still does), when I manage to think I woke myself up but realizing I just forced myself into a parallel dream state. Even when I wake from a horrifying dream, I need to stay awake for at least 10 minutes, because I can easily slip back into the same awful dream. Great, right?
Last night I had a particularly bad dream. I was stuck in some sort of pit, and snakes were chomping on my limbs. You see, I hate snakes. Like Indiana Jones, when I see a snake in my dreams I think: “Snakes! Why does it always have to be snakes?!” It’s my anxiety dream of choice.
So I manage to wake myself up (or so I thought). I sat up in bed, breathed a sign of relief, and just when I thought I was home free, a snake appeared under my covers. Argh! Worse- I had a heck of a time waking myself up. When I did finally, I jumped out of bed and stood in the middle of the room praying that I was really awake. ala Paranormal State without the demon in the house.
I was awake… but the fear of lying back down was too much. So I rocked back and forth and willed the nightmare away before I slipped back into bed.
I’m not sure how I was blessed with such a jabberwocky brain. Or if there are many people like me, or if I am a class unto myself. I’ve pinpointed that my dreams are stress relief for me. It’s a way of my working out the cobwebs nestled in the far corners of my head.
I just wish I dreamed more about good things than bad.
The irony is my dreams have gotten a little more nightmarish in the last 5 years (oh, duh!) no doubt due to the constant state of stress I’ve managed to wrap myself into.
I had always liked to blame the infertility medications on my active imagination, but now that it’s been 6 months without any artifical substances in my bloodstream, I guess I can’t.
The key now is to channel the negative energy away from my sleep ritual.
The problem… I’m not sure if that ever will change.