Wednesday, December 27, 2006

Things That Go Bump in the Night

I remember lots of my nightmares, and I’ve never been able to decide how normal or abnormal I think that is. Well, and it’s not just nightmares, fortunately – I tend to remember all my dreams for a long time. I’m not generally one of those people who wakes up with the vague memory of a dream in mind, only to have it disappear completely within ten minutes. No, I remember.

When I was growing up, we had a black-bottom swimming pool in our backyard. In case you’re unfamiliar with the concept, it’s pretty much exactly what it sounds like – instead of a pale shade of aqua blue, the pool is a dark navy, almost black. You can imagine this might be somewhat scary. When I was eight-ish, I had a horrible nightmare about it. Mom and I were swimming together, when suddenly a Jaws-size shark burst through the end wall and swam towards us. We swam as fast as we could to the stairs, and Mom pushed me ahead so I could climb out first. I got out safely, but right before Mom could, the shark chomped down on her leg. I screamed and woke up.


Of course, I had another nightmare a few years later, where the roles were somewhat reversed. Mom, Seeser, and I were in a swamp of some sort, swimming from one island to the next. We had to keep out of the water because it was full of alligators (or crocodiles, but who can tell the difference?). So we would swim as fast as we could, pull ourselves up onto the island, run to the other side, jump into the water, and swim to the next island. (I swear, it made total sense in the dream.) But then we got to an island and I was too tired to pull myself up. Mom and Seeser were looking down at me, waiting, and so I reached up to them for help. But Mom just looked at me and shook her head, as if to say, “No, you have to do this by yourself.” The alligators/crocodiles were getting closer and closer, and I kept trying to pull myself up, but I was just so tired… And then I woke up.

*Shudder* again.

Definitely the worst one, though (okay, not the worst. I’m not going to tell you about the worst. Not here, not anywhere. Nope), is a nightmare I’ve had on a recurring basis since I was about 14 or so. The people have changed repeatedly over the years, but the premise is always the same. I’m walking along a cliff overlooking a deep ravine. With me is a male and a female – the first time it was Dad and SM, for example. From here, it’s pretty predictable: The other female and I stumble and fall over the edge of the cliff, the male catches each of us with one hand, but he can’t hold us both, so…. The worst part of the dream, without a doubt, is the look he gives me right before he drops me – it’s so superficially apologetic, as if to say, “Aww, that’s too bad. Well, that’s life, huh?” And then he lets me go. Always.

Predictable or not, it’s a horrible nightmare.

I could go on and on – I could probably tell you about nightmares that would give you nightmares – but I won’t. Instead I’ll ask you: What’s been your scariest nightmare?


Day 27 of LaBloShoeMo: Flip Flops

Well, as I said, we're doubling up for the last few days of the month. Today, we have two lovely pairs of flip flops.

First pair of Day 27: The White Stud Flip Flops

These are completely flat, which means they offer no support whatsoever - I might as well be barefoot. But since I don't really wear these out on long hikes or anything, it's not generally a big deal. They're pretty dirty, as I've had them for a number of years now, but they're comfortably worn in, as well. Plus, so far as white flip flops go, they're slightly more interesting than normal, because they have the blue trim and the silver studs along the strap. (I do, however, have a pair of plain white flip flops as well.)

Second pair of Day 27: The Chi O Flip Flops

Yep, I'm a Chi Omega. (On a TOTAL whim, I will put this question out there and see if any of my readers just HAPPEN to know the answer: What is it?) I pledged in the spring of my sophomore year in college, and I love being a Chi O. I regret that I couldn't put as much time into the chapter as I might have liked when I was an active, being as busy as I was with other activities. And actually, I kind of regret not being more involved with the alumnae chapter in my area now, but that one, at least, I can fix. Maybe it's time...

At any rate, these are far and away my comfiest and most versatile pair of flip flops. As such, they are the pair I wear most often. I have been known to wear these with shorts, sweatpants, jeans, khakis, and pinstripe slacks. I have walked so many miles in these babies, and they are in great shape. And when the sad day comes that they should happen to need replacement, I will lovingly bury them in a beautiful ceremony and immediately order a new pair. (And yes, I also have a pair of plain black flip flops, but why would I ever wear them when I could wear THESE?!)


Anonymous said...

I loooove flip flops!

In fact, I have a (Gasp!) great Colorado pair I forgot about, but then remembered thanks to you!

Anonymous said...

Wow - those nightmares sound really awful.

I had a nightmare when I was really young, I think maybe 6 or 7, that I still remember, it freaked me out so much. It's basically like your pool one - my mom and I were walking across my elementary school's parking lot and as she was crossing behind me she gets hit by a car. *shudder*. I only had it once, but I've never forgotten it.

Mama said...

Oh God. I so hate nightmares. I've had a lot of nightmares about falling, being chased and not being able to run or scream, etc. Some of the scariest nightmares I remember, though, are ones I had when I was pregnant with my oldest. I would have different variations of the same dream nightly, which basically would include me forgetting my baby somewhere. I would go somewhere with baby and then forget him in the car, or the shopping mall, or the parking lot. I would wake up in a sweat. I guess it was the anxiety of being pregnant or something.

Lately, my nightmares tend to be around b/f not being there for me. I've dreamt a few times that my abusive ex has been after me and I've tried running to boyfriend only to find him too busy to care about helping me escape. Guess I don't need a psychologist to figure that one out, huh?

Dallas Blue said...

I have really intense, realistic dreams -- I often wake up, wondering if that hasn't really happened. And THEN, I often get a sense of deja vu, because something similar to the dream will happen.

A black bottomed swimming pool sounds HORRIFIC. Like, it gives me shudders just to consider it.

Chi Omega -- that's one of the female fraternities, isn't it?

Mocha said...

I'm unfamiliar with Chi Omega because no sorority would have me. If only there were ones with hot, young moms in college... *sigh...

There's no way I'm going to recount my nightmares here. I'll be sure to have one of them tonight and that would suck.

Oh! But my mom once said her worst one involved me barely reaching out my hand to save her from drowning and that's kind of haunted me since she said it about 20 years ago. Like I wonder if I really feel so crappy about my mom, ya know?

Anonymous said...

P.S. You know they are THONGS. xD

Unknown said...

Ha! Aly called them Flip Flops! We shall Americanize her yet!


Props to you for being so open about your nightmares. I tend to keep them to myself, for fear that rehashing them will be nothing but an unpleasant experience. Haven't had many lately (one absolutely terrible one in Vegas, though), but it's hard to tell when or why they appear. Here's hoping I'm nightmare free for a bit.

Anonymous said...

Is being able to remember your good dreams sufficient compensation for having to remember the bad ones?

Lara said...

aly - i'm glad i could remind you of your awesome flip flops!

tali - yeah, nightmares like that are fairly common, but seriously awful. yours sounds bad, too. :(

jo - i hate the dreams where i'm running from something, but it feels like i'm running through molasses or something. or where i'm hiding, and i know my hiding place isn't very safe, but i can't seem to move, so i'm just waiting to be caught. ugh. sorry, too, about the most recent dreams. how are things going with bf these days?

sassy - i end up wondering whether a dream was real or not most often when it's just a conversation with someone i know. i end up going to them later and saying, "did i talk to you on the phone last night?" usually it was just a dream, but once in a while, it turns out i had had a conversation while half-asleep. and yes, chi omega is a female fraternity, or sorority. :)

mocha - awww, *we* would have loved to have you in our chapter. totally. and yeah, i think my mom felt guilty about that alligator dream for a while after i told her about it. the important thing to remember about dreams, in my opinion, is that while the feelings are often accurate, the specifics aren't. so maybe your mom felt helpless and like she was being abandoned by people close to her, but that doesn't necessarily mean it was you. make sense?

aly - um, no, dear. thongs are what you buy at victoria's secret when you don't want VPL. they are never, EVER to be worn on your feet. flip flops are what we wear on our feet.

teacher - aly's learning, slowly but surely. i'm hoping your'e nightmare free for a while too!

TB - not really, no. especially because sometimes, i have a dream, and it seems good, but then as time goes on, i realize it was actually bad. and then instead of being glad to remember it, i wish i could forget it. but i can't remember a single dream i've ever had, the memory of which was good enough to make up for the bad memories of these nightmares. and the others not discussed here.

Teacher Anonymous said...

I don't really have nightmares anymore, just scary dreams. I classify nightmares as anything that makes me afraid to go back to sleep. I did have a frightening dream last night, though, that left me all sweaty when I woke up. In it, I was performing an exorcism on a button. It was a really evil button, and just kept following me around. In the end, I had to melt it into nonexistance with holy water.

When I was little, I used to have nightmares about rats climbing up onto my bed. Somehow, I don't think my dad hunting rats in the garage with a pellet gun and a flashlight helped that fear go away any faster.

My last real nightmare happened in first grade, and you can really see all the threads of real life in there. We had just recently read "Where the Wild Things Are," the bed in my room had an ocean-themed comforter, and we had been listening to "Songs of the Whales" as our going-to-sleep music lately. Put that all togeather, and you get a nightmare that involves fleeing the island of the Wild Things in a boat, the boat capsizing, and being able to see and hear the things living underwater (that were probably going to get me) as I laid there on top of the ocean.

One of my more memorable scary dreams happened during the long drawn out process of my parents' divorce. I was swinging through the canopy of a jungle, persued by my mother, who was a panther. I could hear here behind me, and she was whispering, "Only the sum of your parts." It was quite disturbing. I actually had a lot of dreams about being chased by my mother during that time, though. Not fun.