Soulful Saturday: Nightmares

Hihi, guys! How are you? I’ve been doing a bit mixed in terms of health and other things, but I’m still alive and kicking, so that’s good! Now if I could stop dying in minecraft, that’d be even better. Honestly, I’ve seen and died to so many creepers and skeleton archers, I’m surprised I’ve yet to have a nightmare about them when I’m terrified of them in reality. And it was that concept that lead to today’s post: nightmares.

Not all of the dreams I have are nightmares, mind you. I’ve had good dreams- but my bad dreams, or just the weird ones, are so vivid! They’re far more realistic than my good dreams that I wake happily from. The weird and wild dreams usually fall in line with the nightmare side… So I’ll be sharing some of those as well. I won’t go into excessive detail, but I’ll give you enough to learn how my mind has worked since I was young.

The most memorable nightmare I have ever had was when I was in elementary school. My dad thinks it was induced by stress from overhearing a DYFS worker saying they planned to take me away from him because she didn’t like how our apartment looked or something like that, but I don’t know for sure. All I do know is this is one of the most bizarre nightmares I’d ever had at that point, and for most of my life, to be honest.

It starts with a news flash: Clones of all the people in the world were starting to appear. At that same time, aliens were invading, particularly colorful animals that otherwise seemed harmless… except for the ducks. The purple ducks with black spots were far from cute and innocent looking birds. They had sharp teeth and were eating anyone in sight, original or clone. The dream ended when the ducks got into our school, which was at max capacity because of the clones. I believe it was around the time I was about to get eaten that I woke up. This no longer counts as the weirdest dream I’ve had, but it’s still pretty damn creepy to remember!

I won’t tell you much about the weirdest dream I’ve had now, as I plan to use it to write a story- most likely in comic form. What I can tell you is it’ll be a psychological thriller of sorts, focusing on magic in a world that no longer actively has it, and a death game that brings magic back to life.

Not all my weird dreams count as nightmares, but sometimes they came from something that I think of as a nightmare to deal with. Once, when I was young, I had a migraine. I was sleeping at the time before the pain started- and to warn me it was there, my mind gave me a peculiar dream. I lay flat on the ground, in a barren world. There was only the sky, me, and random feathers floating softly to the ground. I’d pick up one of the fallen feathers and drop it on my head with a giggle. But then, I picked one up and dropped it on my head again, only to feel like I’d dropped a brick on my head instead. I tried another and another- it just kept leading to worsening pain. When I woke up, my head felt like it did in that terribly painful dream. It’d been so picturesque before my migraine decided to make itself be heard.

Now, let’s roll back the clock even further. See, I have a couple of memories of dreams I had as a toddler. One I even have a vivid image of in my head. For some reason, as a tot, I had a lot of dreams about being chased by food- the most memorable one being a strawberry. Every time I’d have one of these nightmares, I’d refuse to eat the food involved, slowly but steadily limiting my intake of food in general until I got over the dreams in time.

Another one I remember well was Reader Rabbit popping out of my computer screen and trying to kill me. I mean, he was pretty tiny- it was hard to understand at the time I was safe at all though. And it wasn’t just Reader Rabbit. Mario, one of my cereal box mascots… Many of them apparently had a violent streak and wanted to off me. I’m not really sure why.

The final nightmare I intend to share is something that’s very triggering for a lot of people, including myself. If you’re triggered by any form of sexual harrassment or misconduct, please skip over the next paragraph.

When I was about six or so, I started therapy. Then, one night, I had a terrifying dream that my therapist raped me. I couldn’t remember being raped, or anything like it, but somehow I had vivid images of the act, and I’d wake up terrified every time. Yes- it wasn’t a one time thing. I had similar nightmares with a lot of people in them. I had them since childhood, but they didn’t really stop completely. I get them once every few years at most now, but the fact is, they happen. And the impact was so strong that I ended up with a notable case of androphobia.

Anyway, that’s all the nightmares I can think to share with you today. If you’d like, why not share some of your own? To talk through the scary things in life can be quite liberating. I know this was for me! So let me know in the comments, what kind of nightmares do you get? And, if you have any, tips on how to avoid them. Until next time- take care, friends!

Soulful Saturday: PTSD

Hey guys! Today’s Soulful Saturday is going to be a little deep and dark. Today, I want to discuss flashbacks, actually. But these aren’t any ordinary flashback… they’re flashbacks from PTSD.

I have been through a number of traumatic situations. I’ve been in many car crashes, I’ve had a crazy neighbor attack my dad, and I’ve had someone sexually harass me and I just couldn’t get it to stop on my own.

Each of these issues put together encompass the majority of my PTSD. On Friday, I had a severe panic attack after having a flashback of my uncle sexually harrassing me. And you see, here’s the thing: my uncle isn’t a great person, but at the time most of us thought he was a good person all together. The thing is, he’s a drinker. And when he drinks, he unthinkingly starts touching you in places that make you very uncomfortable, such as your butt or getting really close to your chest. He’s tried kissing me right at the corner of my mouth, and honestly, I was disgusted. All of this just disgusted me… And I was afraid for a long while to tell anyone, “Uncle Bob [not real name] has been harassing me”.

The day before Friday, my dad left the room while on a call, and I went to look for him and make sure he was alright. I ended up hearing him talk about issues with my uncle. And I broke down in SECONDS.

Friday, however, was a strange one. My panic attack took a variety of coping skills and tissues to calm myself down enough to write this. So yes, this was written on Friday instead.

Today, I had a flashback of when he’d touch my butt even after I said no. I felt it as if it was happening in real time, and it scared me so much I literally got up and took an anxiety pill immediately. Also, that was the last one I have… or… had? I’m not sure whether it really makes sense or not with tense, but oh well.

The point is, something so simple broke me at my core. And that’s just one of three major triggers. I don’t want to talk about them though, because I want to focus on writing out my pain from this particular experience. If you guys want to read about my other PTSD triggers, I’d be more than happy for you to comment and tell me.

I don’t know how long the backlash of hearing that conversation is going to be. All I know is I’ll recover. But, it’ll take a lot of time to truly heal…