April 10, 2005


where's the rub?

One of the wrinkles in how my brain is wrinkled is that I can count on one hand the number of nightmares I've had (in terms of relatively grown-up years; I'm sure I had a fairly standard amount as a kid). What really makes a nightmare a nightmare isn't the dream itself, but rather the reaction to it--waking up badly, etc. In general, I think people have nightmares and wake up discombobulated and sort of freaked out; I have dreams that many others would have the nightmare-defining reaction to, and I tend to wake up, briefly disoriented, and then find the whole thing pretty neat as the noggin shifts to awake status.

Part of this may just be my own particular smartwiring. A "if you don't watch the violence, you'll never get desensitized to it" kind of deal. A lot of my dreams tend to dance the edge of lucidity, and that's probably a factor, too.

This is a good recent example: I'm with a group of folks. Their identity is sort of liquid, in that dreamwise way--friends one moment, family the next, strangers after that--that sort of thing. We're using a remote robot-drone gizmo to scout out a house where something terrible has happened--we're all clustered round a screen where the remote-eye's view is at. (Lacking is any sense of actually controlling the thing--that's apparently just a given, which, dreamwise, I accept at the time.) Exactly what that something-terrible is ill-defined, more just the atmosphere of the place. The remote proceeds into the next room, where there are bodies. Other people with me are not taking this well.

Then the screen darkens and goes black, the darkness is from the image, understand, not just the screen futzing out, and--dig it, this was a killer special effect, and was pretty much the toehold by which my memory kept the chunk of dream it did--forms into a hand that reaches out of the screen and seizes my arm firmly. I announce, "I did this. I did all this," which was the moment the dream went fully lucid with the immediate thought, well, of course I did, it's my imagery after all, and then I was awake.

No distress--my reaction was pretty much finding that shadow-hand-from-the-monitor to be really cool.

Tangentially, now that I'm sleeping a more normal schedule again, my dream recall is definitely improving. Go figure.

posted by Gar @ 9:01 PM
Post a Comment

<< Home

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?