Perchance to Dream
For many years I have had horrible dreams - dreams or drowning, full of blood, hacked off limbs, bitten off ears, jabbed eyeballs, and sliced throats. Really horrible dreams. The only redeeming fact was the 99% of the time whatever terrible act was happening, it was happening to me instead of committing the act myself. I could take some solace in that.
At first, you laugh them off as just bad dreams but once they have been going on for a while (weeks, months, years...), you do start to question what type of monster you are. You start to stay awake later because you don't want to face the dreams. What kind of person dreams night after night of having their feet cut off at the ankles? That person can't be sane right? That person is really messed up. They must be a serial killer or something because that is just not normal.
Trust me, if you make the mistake of telling anyone about these dreams you will know the look of someone who thinks you should be committed...and the funny thing is that the re-telling really don't do the dreams justice. You have never seen such a beautiful, red river as the one that gushes from my dagger sliding upwards through my lower jaw, pinning my tongue through the roof of my mouth. You learn to keep quiet or make up silly little pretend dreams when the subject comes up among others. It is not all you dream about, I'm convinced of that, but how are you supposed to remember anything else once you feel the blade slicing into your ribs?
Eventually, they just become part of your life...you realize that you aren't too messed up (at least I wasn't...I don't think), and you aren't going to hurt anyone. You didn't ever REALLY think you would hurt anyone, but with dreams like that you always worried about some kind of inner psycho/sociopath. The dreams become commonplace and therefore ignorable. They no longer stick with you and disturb you all day. Your mind becomes used to it and like everyone else, your dreams quickly fade in the morning light. You never really even think about them...in fact, there are a couple benefits like finding "scary" movies to be pretty darn silly.
There are times however when it all comes slamming back home and you are saddened. People saying things like "I had a dream about you last night," you think to yourself, "Thank god that I don't dream about people I know." Or people talking about "sex" dreams...I can count on one hand the number of times I have had either a sex dream or a dream about someone you know. Which is a blessing because neither should be mixed up with what I was currently dreaming.
Most people would consider what you dream to be nightmares, but for you it is normal, ordinary life. This has been my life for about 20 years or so. I don't remember when it exactly started but it was before high school. It was sporadic at first, but then they came more and more often until nearly every night was a personal horror show. I haven't told many people about the dreams...a handful at most, the people that I have really felt close, the people who I thought might understand. I've been told that I might be repressing some traumatic event but I really don't think that is the case...
Editor's note: I started writing this blog post over a year and a half ago...it was at a time when the dreams first stopped and I started having normal(er) dreams. However, I was a little anxious that they might come back. So I hesitated. It is a pretty personal topic to me, so that was a little frightening also...so I stopped writing. I am coming back to it now, for the first time feeling confident enough that the horrible dreams are gone not to jinx it.