Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Crazy, But That's How It Goes

    
     When I am stressed (a.k.a. always,) I have a tendency to downplay whatever is bothering me.  I like to call this "pathological optimism."  One of the downsides to this is stress dreams.  Once upon a time ago, when my life was relatively carefree, my stress dreams almost always involved waiting tables at a certain restaurant.  We will call it the Crimson Crustacean.  Years after I stopped working for this establishment, I would still have dreams that the hostess was seating me back to back to back.  In the dream, every time I would go into the kitchen, I would have three new tables when I came back out.  Pretty tame, right?
     After I got back from Iraq, and started dealing with my son's autism and the adjustment back to civilian life, my stress dreams got a little more awesome.  They were about zombies.  (I told you they were awesome.)  Now, these were not nightmares, they were stress dreams.  I was not running through some desolate, burned out cityscape, avoiding a messy death at the hands of the zombie hordes.  No, no.  My zombie stress dreams always took place at my grandma's house in the country.  And I was not scared.  Rather, I was irritated at all the logistical demands being placed on me during the zombie apocalypse.  Why aren't those windows blocked?  Who has been dipping into the rations?  Where's my lobotmizer?  Has anyone seen Skeletor?  Maybe he defected?  These are the things that I worry about when it's stress dream time.  Until recently, anyway.
     It seems that my subconscious no longer finds the thought of the dead rising to be upsetting enough to be the stage upon which I act out my anxieties.  What can I say?  I adjust quickly.  No, it seems the old canoodle had to bump it up a notch.  A few days ago, I had a stress dream about finger amputation.  Again, this was not a nightmare.  In the dream, obviously, three and a half of the fingers on my right hand were amputated.  Surprisingly, I don't remember how they got cut off.  I find this mildly disconcerting.  I'm not running around like a crazy person, bleeding all over the carpet.  Instead, I've got a dishcloth wrapped around my hand, and I'm looking all around for the fingers.  I have a cup filled with ice, and it's my intention to gather all my errant digits, and get to the hospital.  One by one, I find the little suckers.  Only, because this is a stress dream, I somehow keep losing one every time I find another one.  This doesn't end.  I don't ever get to the hospital.  I just wake up.  That's right.  I've thrown down the stress dreams gauntlet.  I'm such an over-achiever.  Tell me about your stress dreams in the comments.  Please?  So I know I'm not completely insane?

34 comments:

  1. You are fantastically effed up!

    Congrats.

    Just kidding. I have them all of the time, but they're never so interesting. I'm usually cleaning, and that is the WORST because I don't clean in real life.

    It just makes me angry.

    This post was hilarious.

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    1. Ewwwwwww, stress dreams about cleaning? No, thank you!

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  2. I can't remember most of my dreams. I wake up and remember them for a second and how upsetting they were but then "Poof!" it's gone. THen I try my best to remember why it made me so troubled and upset and what exactly happened, but nope, it's gone. Can't remember. I'm like that with exes too. Can't remember. Gone! I did have a dream about black poodles the other nigh. Can't remember what they were doing though.

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    1. I think I read somewhere that dreams about black poodles are a sign of the end times.

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    2. It's like "The Grim" for Muggles.

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  3. Okay. Same one since college...realize today is the beginning of finals, but that I've completely forgotten one class all semester. Have to read all the assignments, study, and take final. Spend whole time trying to find classroom on campus, which turns into my middle school, trying to figure out how to explain my sudden appearance.

    No amputations, no zombies. Worse. Potential failure.

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    1. I turn up at my old high school all the time in my dreams! But it's one of those things where it's like, "It was my high school, but it wasn't my high school." And, you're right. Potential failure is so much worse than zombies. At least if the zombies get you, you don't have to know about it for very long.

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  4. As a professional flutist, I'm always dreaming about performances. having a flute break. Realizing it's the day of the concert and I have not prepared. Forgetting to bring the programs. Having my concert dress be the wrong color. Having pieces of my flute fall off.

    Yeesh.

    More recently, discovering that I'd never actually gotten my undergraduate degree. That I had forgotten to re-take a class I failed. And of course, trying to get to the last session of the class so I had a chance of taking the final. Getting lost on campus. Not having a student ID. Not being able to find the academic counselor's office, and not getting an appt. because i have no student ID.

    Suckage.

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    1. I have had one similiar to that where I never really graduated high school, so I'm like an actor on 90210, walking around campus all obviously not a teenager. And sometimes I'm pregnant.

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  5. I wish I had zombie dreams. That would be awesome:)

    I have stress dreams about tornadoes, and becoming addicted to smoking. Occassionally, I have nightmares of things happening to my children because I'm not being careful. Those screw me up for days:(

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  6. I used to have waitress panic dreams all the time. I even had it years after I had stopped serving tables.

    Then I had the I left my kid somewhere or trusted someone to take care of my kid and they didn't do a good job stress dream.

    I am waiting for the nightmares of my being the teacher and the kids are being total jerks to start. I've heard they are common. I guess That's when I'll know I'm really a teacher.

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    1. My mom's been a teacher for nearly 35 years, but I've never asked her if she had stress dreams about it. I need to ask!

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  7. Normal stress dreams are trying to collect things/ pack for a trip. Constantly running, but never managing to catch the train, etc.

    Having a simple to do list that multiplies like "If You Give Moose A Muffin" on steroids. Never being able to finish one thing because it calls for something that I then have to track down. IEPs, much?

    Scary is stress, right? I used to be chased by monsters. I blame the original "Dark Shadows," "Kolshack," and "Alien" for amping up those. Curse you for making me watch every chance I got!!!

    Have also had the dreaded return to high school dreams. The bell's about to ring and I have NO IDEA what my schedule is, which means detention and panic. Usually, I know I've finished college, but I am being hauled back to repeat my senior year, which was not fun the first time around. I know that Sister is waiting for me in the Dean of Women's office, and she isn't happy.

    I've actually figured out, when I have these dreams, that I can wake up at any time and not let them push me around. Sometimes, I wake up enough to change them into something else. Those are awesome.

    My dreams used to be pretty awful. I watched strangers die almost every night. I don't know why. I am glad to have moved on from those.

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    1. I have had almost all of those, too! It's so funny how many other people have these kinds of dreams!

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  8. Funny you mention zombies becuase on the radio today they were talking about some company who wants to buy 200 acres of abadnoned land in Detroit and turn it into a zombie appocolypse game where you kill zombies.
    Weird.
    Anyways, since I take medication, my dreams are ridiculous and very vivid. Don't worry, they are prescription meds.

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    1. Um, I would go play the shit out of that "game!"

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  9. I want stress dreams about the zombie apocalypse! That would be SOOOO much more interesting than stress dreams about my old job.

    And my old job? IT project leader. Not even some gore to make it interesting... just the never-ending fear that we accidentally deleted the back-ups on some company-critical data.

    Maybe if I watch more zombie movies???

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    1. Haha, unfortunately my zombie stress dreams aren't exciting, either!

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  10. I have similar dreams. My main one is that a tornado is coming and I'm the only one wanting to do anything about it. I'm not panicking, but I'm, like, "shouldn't we all go to the basement?" and everyone else is like "eh, it'll be fine."

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    1. Yep. And then you're like, "Seriously, guys, certain death awaits us all." And they're still all, "But I want to watch Spongebob."

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  11. I have really vivid and bizarre dreams a lot, but my stress dreams always have one factor in common - i don't exist in them. i'm at a party or a store or at home and i'm following people around nattering at them like crazy because no one acknowledges that i exist, and then it gets all scooby doo and there's a mystery to be solved and i know all the answers and who the bad guy is but everyone else is all bumbling around because they can't hear my crazy smart (in my dream opinion) insights and i can't help...sigh...i did have a dream about zombie lemurs once (swear to god) but we got rescued by Sam and Dean from Supernatural, so THAT was alright

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    1. Your dreams sound amazing! I'm jealous!

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  12. I've never thought about stress dreams but if I had to classify mine, it would be that I am on a trip by myself (which would never happen) usually in Vegas (I lvoe LV, even in my dreams) and I get lost. I have those dreams often. Dreams are interesting, I'm always wondering why the hell I'm dreaming certain things!

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    1. I'm scared to even try to figure out what some of my dreams mean!

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  13. I must say that reading this is waaaay funnier than trying to read this new insurance company's website ;)

    I adore you even more than I did 10 minutes ago.

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    1. The feeling is mutual! (And, just so you know, I always pronounce that word like "muuuushual." Because it sounds all foreign and sexy in my head.)

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  14. I love that instead of being scared of the zombies you are annoyed at the logistics of dealing with them. You are so a girl after my own heart! Those zombies are damn inconvenient.

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    1. They are! And, we all know, if I didn't take care of the technical aspects, then my whole family would perish.

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  15. So many. Let's see. I'm running through the airport trying to find my gate and I have four minutes to get through three concourses. At some point I recognize this as a dream (because I've been doing it nightly for weeks) and I wake up and think, whew. Glad I didn't have to make that flight. Then I fall back asleep and ACTUALLY WALK TO THE TICKET COUNTER to rebook, and the lady says you can make it on this flight over here, but it's leaving in three minutes, and it's a half mile away, so start running. Great. Not only do I have to have this dreary dream, but I'm having it in the sunny past when you didn't even have to go through security or anything. It's an antique stress dream.

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    1. Hahaha, if it's antique, that makes it worth more money, right?

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    2. I just re-read what you said at the beginning. Anyone who knows me would accuse me of pathological optimism. And I have stress dreams to the exclusion of any other kind. Flying? Never. Sex? In your dreams. Not mine. Hmm.

      And also, I forgot to thank you for FINALLY pushing me over the 300-follower mark!

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    3. Yay, I'm making a difference!

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