Protection And Running Away

This is a follow up from my previous post.

After I had written it, and gone to sleep, I had a nightmare.

Before I get into the dream, it needs to be said that most of my dreams over the years have followed a similar theme. They all involve me protecting others (or myself and even baby animals). Running away from someone, a group of people, or something (like a natural disaster).

In this dream, that person was my step-father. He was hurting my youngest little sister, and throwing her around the room. She was so tiny. Just a little toddler. It broke me seeing what he was doing to her. So I picked her up and ran. Suddenly there were other people with us who I was also trying to lead to safety. We climbed and jumped over walls and roofs, and crawled through barbed wire fences. Trying to stay out of sight of the monster who was hunting us. There were security camera’s, so it was even more important for us to avoid being seen. There were wide open spaces, which made us especially vulnerable. Other spaces were difficult to get through, as there were plants and trees surrounding us. We came across a house here and there, but I knew they weren’t safe to run into. That the people who lived there were in on it with my step-father. Every time I thought we were in the clear, I’d find that it wasn’t over, and he was catching up to us.

Suddenly a SWAT team appeared. They were helping us escape. But then we understood that they weren’t there to help us at all. They had their own agenda. Now there were more people after us. One of the guys running with us, picked up a dead snake, and told us that the SWAT team had been fooling us. Why a dead snake, and what that has to do with anything, I have no idea (some of my dreams have featured snakes- I don’t know what that represents). At the end of the dream, when I finally thought we were really safe this time, as there were normal people walking around, I realized that we were still in danger. I felt trapped.

I woke up crying. And I realized just how much my past has affected me, and shaped my life. For the first time, I can acknowledge that I haven’t yet fully dealt with it. I always tried to run away from my past. Pretending that it didn’t affect me. But now I realize just how much it actually did.

Once I was fully awake, I felt a combination of anger and deep hurt. I’ve always tried to be the protector to everyone. To take care of others. I took on that role. But who protects me? Who protected that little girl? The people who were supposed to protect her, didn’t, or couldn’t. And for the first time, I’m feeling the extent of that pain.

I could never truly connect to that part of myself until now. I’m grieving for that sad, lonely, and scared little girl. For the teen who had to deal with so much.

Those uncried tears, are finally being released. The hurt with nowhere to go, is being experienced and channeled. The secrets with no one to tell, are now being told.

It’s too painful to feel all at once. But the door has been opened, so I can begin to walk through it.

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Can I Sleep Now?

I’m beyond tired.

Exhausted, is a better word.

I’ve struggled with insomnia for as long as I can remember. Even as a child, I’d struggle to fall asleep and stay asleep. When I would finally fall into a deep sleep, I’d have nightmares most nights. A lot of them were recurrent, with a few new ones thrown in now and then just to shake things up.

For almost two months now, I’ve been having nightmares almost every night. At first I remembered them all. But then it became a case of waking up with a racing heart, drenched, and in a panic or fearful state, but unable to remember the dream. Sometimes I’m completely disoriented and not even sure where I am. One morning I woke up with my hand clenched into a fist, my nails digging into my skin. It was painful trying to open my hand, and the marks it left reminded me to cut my nails before going to sleep that night. This has happened before. But I didn’t learn my lesson. Long(ish) nails don’t work for me.

It’s been 3 nights of having had hardly any sleep, even though I’ve not had much these past two months, it was at least a little better than these past few days. And boy am I feeling it now. Yesterday I was still perfectly fine. I was even in a hyperactive state. Having had insomnia as a regular companion throughout my life, I like to think that I deal with it pretty well and can cope with less sleep than a lot of other people. But right now I’m not handling this lack of sleep very well.

I went through the day feeling completely ‘out of it’. Nothing or no one feeling real. I’m not depressed. I’m just exhausted. Work was so excruciatingly stressful and hard today. All I wanted to do was come home, put the covers over my head and sleep until tomorrow morning.

I didn’t even know how to respond to an email my therapist had sent me today. And right now, I can’t even remember what I wrote back. I’ll check it tomorrow when I can actually make sense of things.

On the note of my therapist, I was planning on writing a little bit about our session from Monday, but my brain just can’t work that hard right now at remembering things. And it feels like a lifetime ago. I’ll write about it tomorrow or Friday.

My mind is so fuzzy, I’m surprised I’m able to write this post. Honestly, I’m not even sure why I’m writing it. It doesn’t even feel real. Maybe I’m dreaming that I’m writing this?

If it wasn’t for the fact that I just started my job at the beginning of this month, and am still in the probation period, I would skip the alarm clock tomorrow morning.

I want nothing more than to sleep. With no nightmares. No struggling for hours to fall asleep. No waking up 20 times. Just pure, glorious sleep.

Is this too much to ask?

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Dream: Waves

I was going to start this post with an apology for my last post, and for not having written anything in a little while. But I don’t want this blog to become a place where I apologize for having feelings (or not feeling anything at all), or where I post because I feel I have to. I think I know myself well enough to know that once that happens, it will just become another thing I stop because I feel overwhelmed and like it’s a responsibility. Thank you to everyone who reads my posts, and for all your comments, likes, and emails. I appreciate all of you.

I’m still not in the head space to write anything ‘profound’ or uplifting, so decided to share another dream instead.

Last night I had a nightmare that I had so many times as a child and teenager, but over recent years hasn’t featured quite as much. Strangely enough, the dream is always the same, with only very minor differences.

I’m standing in a wooden house in what appears to be the middle of the ocean, because I can’t see a shore in any direction. The house is on stilts. Either I am doing something in the house, or I am just looking out the window over the ocean. If I am doing something, I hear a thundering noise, and go to the window, or out on the deck. I see this huge wave coming toward me. There’s a massive storm as well. I do not panic, but feel this intense fear. I want to run, but I know I can’t. That there is nowhere to go. So all I do is watch as it comes closer. I usually wake up the instant before the wave can hit the house.

A few times the wave would actually hit me before I woke up, and I would be struggling to grab a hold of any piece of wood I could find. Panic taking over, I would struggle and swallow a lot of the salty sea water. I was busy drowning when I would jolt awake, and find myself safe in bed, but feeling very unsafe, my entire body shaking and my heart beating in my head. This extended version of the dream played out last night.

I wish this dream would just stop repeating. Although I suspect it has to do with feeling overwhelmed with life and everything going on in my head. It literally feels like I’m drowning lately. I also can’t help but feel that even the wooden house represents something that I just can’t quite figure out. I guess that’s the world of dreams.