I had one of those dreams again.
I used to have them all the time. Then they stopped for awhile. They start up again at various points in my life, causing me to despise sleep and question what they mean. They are almost always terrifying, but I never die. Sometimes I wake up and realize I didn’t die. I’m still here.
The tornado dreams.
I’ve analyzed them over and over. I’ve researched them for over 30 years now. Every one is unique, yet always ends in nearly the same way- with me absolutely terrified, preparing to die. Then I wake up. And the feelings they convey stay with me for days after.
In past dreams, I was coming down the huge hill which was the road to our house where I grew up. I stood at the top and chaos halfway down included black skies, people screaming, and tornadoes all below destroying everything. All I could do was watch from where I was.
Another was on flat land, black skies again, swirling monstrous winds blowing all around me, people huddling together, all watching as the huge funnels head toward them, usually with me nearby, ducking debris and praying it won’t get me.
And then I wake up.
This one was no less horrifying.
I was getting on a bus. I was headed toward a store or somewhere, then notice the bus begins to change course and I hear people talking about getting to shelter. Unfortunately, the bus depot where we end up turns into a trailer, not a sturdy building. Everyone on the bus is suddenly watching out the trailer windows, the swirling clouds are directly in front of us, and three or more tornadoes form. I am gripped with the realization, “this can’t be happening again!?” , and I begin to feel my stomach becoming increasingly upset, my muscles tense up and I panic. My head is like the whirling skies, trying to make it stop, almost willing it to, but I can’t. I notice me ex beside me, but as in many dreams with him I ignore his presence, and continue to watch helplessly as the tornadoes get closer. Things around the trailer are flying by, and I’m screaming. Some moron in the group opens the door to look out, and then tries to close it again, but can’t and a woman suddenly gets sucked out the doorway. I gasp in horror watching her disappear and begin praying, “God, just don’t let this hurt.” The tornado is right there, and I am going to die.
But I don’t.
Instead I wake up, totally upset, shaking, sweating and thinking, “oh shit. Not the dreams again.”
As a kid I sleep walked. And dreams were always vivid. Colorful, exciting, hilarious, downright awesome at times. Once I was fighting bad guys alongside MacGyver, and it was really cool. I felt invincible, indestructible. But sometimes the dreams were stormy, obscene, frightening or embarrassing. And the tornado dreams began, from what I remember, in my teens. They were mostly one a year or so, then I began having them more frequently. I started to write them down, trying to find a pattern. In all the research I’ve read, the theme seems obvious, chaos in my life = chaos in my dreams. Things are up in the air, thoughts are tossed about, but never taking root or landing. I’m scared because, as a Libran, I need plans, routines, closure. And I still haven’t found my true soil yet. I’m not planning to stay in Hel Paso, but lacking the proper guidance or transportation to get to where my final planting will be. I’ve been uprooted so many times and placed in the wrong kind of environment, I’m weary of this constant “waiting for my place to settle down and be”.
And the dreams/nightmares (though nightmares is a silly word to use because I rarely sleep at night), always leave me with one nagging impression, ” I didn’t die when everyone around me did.”
From what I have understood researching these dreams, the point is this, ‘I’m ok.’ The world around me has fallen apart, the tornadoes have destroyed everything. They haven’t killed me. I’m still standing, looking back, always at a distance, thinking “why am I the only one still alive?”
Because I’m indestructible.
I know, you’re saying, “yeah, uh huh, sooner or later, you’ll recognize you’re human, not a superhero.”
Maybe I’ll tell you to read the definition of a superhero and tell me I’m wrong. 🙂
I keep feeling scared and sad when the dreams come. But then I remember the ending of each dream. I’m the one watching and breathing. Like the ending of some epic movie, the music will play some uplifting song, poignant and reassuring, and the hero will go on, quietly walking into the sunset.
Everyone is a superhero in their own movie. We don’t all wear capes or carry a sword.
I need a tissue.
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