Friday 26 September 2014

Dreams End

You know that moment between sleep and wake?

One minute you are asleep and the next second you are awake. There is a little fuzziness that blurs the dividing line, but there is a difference. I guess that moment is what separates fantasy from reality. I passed through that line today, just after my nap and before my wake.

While I was mulling over whether it would be worthwhile moving from the horizontal to the vertical, I thought about the in between. That is the spot where dreams end and reality begins. I have been there many times over the years and sometimes I would have done anything for just a few more seconds of that dream. Sometimes I would have done anything to get out of the dream just a few seconds earlier. It is a funny place to be.

I can remember times that my dream ended and I was able to fall back asleep for a few moments to try and finish the dream. Although I went back, the dream wasn’t quite the same, kind of like I was forcing fantasy. Whatever neurons were firing during my REM sleep, they weren’t the same ones that fired when I drifted back into dreamland. The effect was similar, but noticeably different. In fact, generally I have woken up very disappointed and with no more desire to stay in bed.

Dreams end is also the exact moment that you would have died in a nightmare. I have often wondered if I hadn’t woken up just before I fell to my death, was shot, knifed, attacked by a pack of wolves, froze to death or was drowned, would I have actually died. There is no way to know, because I have always woken up. I suppose the only way for me to know is to die in my sleep during a dream. I am not that interested in finding out.

I have woken up from a dream so real that I stayed angry with “dream” Louise for days afterwards. I know it is a dream and absolutely not real, but I can’t help but feel that I was done wrong. Real or “dream” Louise, I think I deserve an apology.

I can still vividly remember a dream from when I was a little boy. I was walking home from school when I just knew that some gangsters were hunting me. I hid in the tall grass of the hydro field as they drove past, but they must have seen me get up in the rear view mirror of their limousine and they turned around. I panicked and bolted down the street, eventually running up to a house, through the front door and living room and leaving through the back door. The people didn’t even have time to react before I was out of the house. I ran to the end of the yard, hopped the fence and hid in the long grass of the train tracks. I heard shouting from the house, screaming and gunfire. Then there was silence.

The back door of the house opened and I was so scared that I couldn’t move from my hiding place in the grass. I thought I was going to be safe when I looked up and there was this man all in black, holding a gun in his outstretched hand. There was a little crooked smile on his face and I could see his finger tighten on the trigger. I woke up drenched in sweat, terrified but alive.

Once again, I had survived the dreams end…

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