I have always been someone who dreams a lot.
The majority of those dreams are very vivid and detailed, but when I wake up all I’m left with is something vague and hard to grasp, like a colour, or a sense of happy anticipation, or a slight discomfort in my stomach.
The only way I can think of describing them is ‘bubble dreams’. Trying to remember exactly what they are about is like trying to catch a bubble – you watch it falling and you can see slightly distorted reflections that almost look like reality… but not quite.
You reach out and you can almost grasp it in your hand… but then it bursts, and it’s gone.
For as long as I can remember I’ve also gone through spells where I have the same dream over and over again. Not every night, but certainly once or twice a week for a period of months.
When I was a teenager it was always flying. Nothing too dramatic – no soaring into the sky or gliding over canyons – just a wee swoosh around the room and and a shimmy around the cornicing. I was always terribly disappointed to wake up and discover that my new-found skill wasn’t real.
In my early twenties I remember two distinct periods of recurring dreams. They weren’t nightmares, but there was definitely a faint feeling of something menacing in them. In one dream I would always be walking along a hotel corridor looking for my room, and I’d be unable to find it. My room number wouldn’t exist and I’d have to keep walking and walking. Eventually I’d break into a run, but I’d never find the room I was looking for. In the other dream I’d be in a free-falling lift, overwhelmed with dread and fear, but I’d always wake up with a jolt just before impact.
I’m going through another spell of recurring dreams just now. They vary slightly, but the central theme is always that I am inside a house, having to pack in a hurry to get out of there. I have a vague sense of some external threat – sometimes there are helicopters outside, or people shouting – so I hurry to throw things into a bag, and find myself having to choose between possessions that are precious to me. I always seem to wake up before I actually have to leave the house.
I am not heavily into dream analysis, but I’ve always imagined my dreams as being like an internal filing system. It’s my brain’s way of putting people and places and experiences in the right drawers, so that I can pull them out again in future if I need to.
I hope that my subconscious sleeping self hurries up and gets this whole ‘packing in a hurry’ thing shoved away into the appropriate drawer.
It’s not a big deal, but the flying and the bubbles are a lot more fun.
What are your experiences with dreams? Do you have regular recurring dreams too? Share your thoughts in the comments below!