Confusing My Nightmares for Reality

Candles in the dark... the spookiest image I could find

I keep having these lapses in my memory, well; they’re not really lapses, more like blurry confused bits. I should preface this by explaining that I dream a lot, and very vividly. It’s not unusual for me to get confused between dreams and reality- and I’m not talking about hallucinations here, I’m talking about normal, everyday kind of stuff. The most common thing is not telling someone something because I think I’ve already told them- but it was in a dream.

Hence the fact that my memory is a little blurry.

I get so confused, I once walked into the canteen at the start of school, saw my best friend sat in her normal place, smiled and said hello to her and walked off to continue with my day, only to be perplexed at break when she didn’t appear. I asked another friend about her whereabouts and was told that she hadn’t come in, I laughed and replied that I’d seen her this morning- he then informed me that I must be going mad.

The irony was not lost on me.

Anyway, this whole thing is going from frustrating to worrying, is it just another sign of the decline of my mental health? Or is it just me? I’ve never heard of people getting confused between real life and dreams, not even with people who have severe mental health problems. Maybe I’m just odd- I mean, I should clarify that what I’m talking about isn’t a one off, it happens almost daily for me, whether it’s thinking I’ve already done something, as mentioned above, or having a feeling of foreboding, and then realising that the event I’m dreading was only coming up in my dream.

I enjoy dreaming, I hate it when I don’t dream- it feels like when you have a blocked nose and you can’t smell properly- it’s like lacking a sense.

It’s a bit like living two lives, one when I’m asleep that I only remember sporadically, and one when I’m awake- that, if I’m being honest, I also only remember sporadically. Oh well, at least if I combine the two I end up with one whole life.

Positive thinking Wren, positive thinking.

Living partially in this dream world makes me confused, it makes me constantly feel like I’m scrambling to keep up with things and like I can’t get my own thoughts straight, and if there’s one thing that freaks me out above all else it’s when I can’t think straight.

I always joke that my mind is my best friend and my greatest enemy, it gives me amazing ideas and interesting things to write about, but it also screws itself up.

Not only do my dreams confuse me, they also show my biggest fears. I’ve always been terrified of heights and water, even though I have no bad experiences with either. However, from a young age I’ve been plagued with dreams about falling, and dreams about drowning. The feeling of falling through the air with the concrete hurtling towards you, and the sensation of choking, water closing in all around and the burning in your lungs- they’re not things I’ll soon forget.

When I was being sexually molested I had vivid, graphic dreams of being raped. I could feel every second- the fear and the powerlessness and the feel of their hands on me. It was those dreams that finally drove me to try and kill myself for the first time.

For as long as I’ve known I’ve had dreams about something chasing me, and trying to scream out for help but finding that I have no voice. The darkness consumes me as I desperately try to scream for someone to notice me- but they just keep on going about their business, ignoring me.

My name is Wren, and I get confused between dreams and reality.

Listening to: O Children by Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds. This should be a really uplifting song, but it always seems so sad to me- it’s also a song that I’ll always link with winter and sitting looking out at the snow.

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