Throughout my life, I’ve been blessed – and cursed – with rather vivid dreams. I can’t qualify them as “extremely” or “extraordinarily” vivid dreams, because I don’t spend a whole lot of time in other people’s dreamscapes, but I do know that they are vivid.

When I was pretty young, early elementary school-age, I had a dream that my brother shot me with his BB gun and the bullet went into my wrist. It left a gaping hole that didn’t bleed, but kept flapping open and closed. Then, suddenly, an eye appeared inside it, staring up at me.  When I woke shaken from the dream, I discovered a white scar on my wrist. It’s a chickenpox scar – which I must have had since I was nine months old – but it’s the first time I ever remember noticing it.

It’s such a mysterious thing what the subconscious does with the information it absorbs.

When I was in high school, I remember my alarm clock ringing in the midst of dreams from which I never wanted to wake, dreams so perfect that all I could think about the next day was going back to sleep. Of course, the dreams never started back up the way I hoped they would, but it didn’t stop my recurrent quest to get back to the same dream worlds.

I’ve had recurring dreams from time to time, but I’ve never been able to revisit a dream by choice.

As an adult, I have experienced a couple of dream disorders that I am glad to be largely past, but, still, I cannot control my mind. Most of us can’t. Every so often, I am amazed anew at the fact that, in sleep, my mind doesn’t answer to me. It consumes me.

The dreams of adulthood have taught me that monsters and gross things aren’t the true terrors of my subconscious. My fears, the ones that feel real both in sleep and upon waking, those are the things that make up my nightmares. I’ve never woken up crying because Freddy Krueger was hot on my tail.

Of course, now that my mind has latched onto that nugget, I’ll probably be meeting old melty-face in my dreams tonight.

Two nights ago, I dreamt that I was riding in a car with Robert Downey, Jr., who was playing the part of my dream uncle. I also had the cutest little Indian niece and she kept grabbing my hand from the backseat. Uncle Robert was driving quite terribly. It was a bumpy ride under an overpass on the graveled shoulder of the road.

Last night, I dreamt I was standing with my real brother – the oldest of my two younger ones – and I couldn’t stop hugging him. Which really isn’t all that subconscious. It’s not always easy for me to be around my family, but distance doesn’t make me love them any less. I often wonder if they really know how much of my heart stays with them.

I’ve also been thinking about my brother lately because I’ve decided he bears such a striking resemblance to Prince Harry that I’m starting to wonder when my father might have had the opportunity to hook up with Princess Diana.

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