Monday, 18 February 2013

Lucid Dreams & Nightmares

Although you're reading this on Monday, it was actually written in the early hours of Sunday morning when I woke up after a scary-ass dream and was too frightened and freaked out to go back to sleep. It was truly bizarre so I won't recount it here but suffice to say it involved people's arms coming off and was kind of like The Ring (right down to the way it ended with a sort of video and I'm not saying anymore because I'm feeling creeped out again).

I think what made it worse was the fact it started out as a lucid dream that I lost control over. For those who are unaware of what lucid dreaming is, it's basically where you know you're dreaming and you have control over what happens. Apparently it's something you can train yourself to do (you can even buy sleep-masks with LEDs in them which flash words to remind you you're asleep) but it's something I've been able to do for as long as I can remember. I've got memories of these fantastic Bedknobs and Broomsticks dreams (one of my favourite dreams circa. 1992) where I knew it was a dream but I was able to decide where we went and would be able to pick up the thread the following night.

I wasn't even aware it was a thing until I read an article about it online when I was in my late teens. It was weird to find out it wasn't something that everyone did when they were asleep because I'm so used to it. It's a good way to plan out ideas for stories or to create your own fanfiction when things haven't gone the way you like in a TV series. It's a wee bit like Inception which is possibly why I love that film so much.

For me it tends to work in two ways; I'll either start a dream knowing it's a dream and gradually it'll fade off into random dreamness (that I don't have control over) or I'll be having a dream and I'll suddenly realise I'm dreaming and then I'll take control of it. Sometimes I'll do both and there'll be a bit in the middle which I can't do anything about before I start thinking 'this is silly' and change what's happening or rewind it back to the good stuff. It's a good way to handle nightmares because, like the bogart in Harry Potter, you can change the thing that's scary and stop it from frightening you.

Just when you thought it was safe to have an early night!
Suffice to say, that's not what happened on Saturday night/Sunday morning! I'm not entirely sure where the scary bit came from considering the scariest DVDs we have in the house are the Omen boxset and the Thriller TV series (which is mostly just scary how bad the later storylines are). We'd been watching Mr Holland's Opus which inspired the school setting for the dream, but as for the rest I have no idea what my brain was playing at.

What made it worse that when I woke up I reached out for Mr Click only to find the dog in between us in the bed; so he stretched out an arm for me to cuddle. Not so reassuring when the scary dream you're wanting comfort for involved people being separated from that particular limb!

And yeah, it's kind of funny now. The memory of it is already starting to fade so it doesn't seem too bad. All the same, I'm refusing to move from this bed until I can see daylight outside... Oh and if I do drift back off to sleep it'll be with a nightlight on my phone...

I can't help but think my subconscious would make a great horror film director, if only I could get over the fear of actually watching my creations.

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