The Sleeping Dreams:
- My dream started by an outdoor pool, where the sun was shining and reflecting off the water. A dead woman lay on the concrete next to the pool, and my dream Grandmother (neither of my real Grandmothers made an appearance) sent me on a quest to protect a box (Pandora connection?). The quest brought me to a huge cave battle against flying monkey demons, which could be my subconscious telling me that I’ve seen both The Wizard of Oz and the Hobbit movies too many times.
- The recurring one that I had when I was five about being lost on a cliff with my cousin, Brittany. When we found a house and knocked on the door, a witch made Brittany and I eat dirt. The dirt made all of our teeth fell out. It was scary enough that I had the dream three times. A manifestation of my mind trying to make sense of irrational fear and anxiety (which is the common interpretation for any dream about losing teeth).
- All the dreams that I had where I was about to be murdered. The interesting thing here—there was always some sort of supernatural twist to the plotline. Sometimes the dreams start out centered somewhere in the vicinity of reality, but they always manage to veer off course into some sort of supernatural/horror adaptation. This could be attributed to my love for all things fantasy and an overactive imagination, which hasn’t been stifled by my attempts at adulthood.
The Waking Dreams:
- I was in high school the day I decided that I wanted to create my own crazy stories and become an author. I picked a story, told my parents all about it, got a notebook, made backgrounds for all the characters, and even started the first chapter. Then I wrote and wrote and wrote the first few pages half a dozen times—stuck on the very beginning of the story. I realized that nothing I wrote matched the vision in my head (I never could figure out how to make the beginning of Hell’s Bells—which was just the working title—work). Fantasy and other adventure books were always an escape for me, which is why I think that my dreams circle those same concepts.
- It was my desire to become bilingual that caused me to commit to taking Chinese Mandarin for four long years. My parents tried to talk me out of it, but I was determined. I spent more time doing the homework than actually learning the language (which left me without the bilingual status). Struggling to memorize the words and sentences to perfection, I would practice and practice the speaking and listening quizzes. Anxiety would settle into my brain—before, during, after. It would take over my mind and my sleep, leaving me awake far longer than I wanted. My mind would then be restlessly devoted to it in my dreams. At some point, panic would settle in for the ride. I would miss a word, fluster myself, and end up forgetting things.
- I have always wanted to travel. Maybe even the whole world (although maybe not the places where I would feel unsafe to be a woman). When I’m sleeping, my dreams have always taken me on adventures. I want that for my waking self too, but maybe without the attempted murder and the supernatural elements. (Although if the latter was a nice surprise and didn’t violate the former, I could make an exception to that particular rule). I have made excuses for why I don’t actually go somewhere—anywhere. I’m a homebody. I don’t want to be so far away from my family for so long—what if something happens, what if they need me? What if I don’t actually like traveling and just think that I will? Then if those explanations don’t work, a lack of money has always a good excuse.
The irony of dreaming about becoming an author, or bilingual, or about traveling the world, was that I didn’t get scared until after I woke up.