I was awakend at 3am last night by a vivid nightmare. My heart pounding and my breath rapid, it took me long seconds to get my bearing. To realize that I was not in the pitch dark basement of an abandoned warehouse with malicious ghosts while possessed people walked past me mumbling inanities. As I lay there in the darkness, my brain kept playing the last terrifying minutes of my dream back in a loop. Despite Neil's comforting warmth next to me, I could not relax. I got up and went into the bathroom where I sat on the toilet, still shaking. The glaring light reassured me, drew me into its embrace.
Outside the monsters lurked. Within that bright room I was safe.
These dreams were absent from my life for a long time. They used to visit me almost every night. I was haunted. But the arrival of a beloved daughter kept those ghosts at bay. Where before I was awakened by my subconscious, now I had a living, breathing, happy lure from my slumber. A lifetime of sleeping badly finally justified. For months and months I had no dreams, good or bad. I fantasized they would never return, just one more post-baby change.
But return they have. Revelations that do not reveal, they torment and tantalize me. Are they symbols, representations of aspects of my life? Are they just what they seem, an overactive imagination finally given the gas to run at full throttle? I revisit the images throughout the day, chewing on them like a canker sore, painful and satisfying.
I don't know how to make them stop. Not even really sure I want them to. They are my burden, but I relish a strange joy in them. These dreams are bizarre and fantastical and sometimes horrifying but they are me. At the core. They are me.