I’ve been thinking about sleeping lately. I never really notice when I go to sleep, I just eventually realize that I am dreaming. I always dream. It is always more weird to me when I wake up without dreaming. Those rare nights when time just skips between night and day, missing all the adventures in places that never were. Even so, over the past few months, I have been dreaming more than ever.
There is a man who attacks me. I don’t know who he is or why. I block his attack and knock him out of his shoes before his friend joins in. Fighting is normal at this point, and it is rare that I lose. Only in dreams though. I have never really fought here in China, because there is no place to do so. No violence in the kung fu, but still I dream of fighting.
One of my friends here dreamed that when I was going to leave, they fell down and pretended to be sick to keep me here. That is actually more touching than the people who talk about missing me. To have your own brain panic about what to do when I leave is an amazing thing. I don’t really know that there is a better way to know I will be missed.
We talked about dreams, about what they mean and why they are a part of life. None of my friends here have had the flying dreams like I have, at least not that they remember. None of them remember crashing like I have either, hitting the ground hard but still not waking up. The only bad part about it is that after crashing I can’t fly again, like the Earth has a hold of me and won’t let go again.
One of them has the ability to realize he is dreaming, but he always uses it to wake himself up rather than enjoying the adventure his mind has ahead. They focus on moving a hand, then they pull themselves out of the dream. It’s rare that I want that. The only time I force myself awake is when the dreams become frustrating, when I simple can’t do what I want to do. I get annoyed, and I just pull out.
That is a more recent development. Now, I always seem to know when I am dreaming. It’s not in the front of my mind, but rather a feeling behind everything I do. Sometimes I will trust it and begin to take control, but the dream has its own voice, and I can rarely do much to change the story it is telling. I am still not really sure I want to take control. I am not the great storyteller that my dreamer is. The madness and adventure are beyond anything I could create.
I have begun to go to bed telling myself to look forward to the adventure, relaxing into the story to come. A part of me even wishes I could sleep more, to travel in the realms beyond this world. A part of me wonders if there is more to it than just what is in my mind, that dreams connect to something beyond ourselves. That would be an adventure, a world beyond imagination.
But in the waking hours I know they are just stories that I tell myself, processing my life and giving form to all that is in my heart and mind. That is still an amazing thing, but I will always dream of adventure.