On Not Sleeping Well

Since I was a small child, I haven’t slept well.

Around age 6 or so, I started having nightmares on a consistent basis. Every night basically saw me having a nightmare about something, almost invariably aliens.

I had bad dreams at other times in my life- dreams that were creepy or unsettling in some way but rarely left me in panic mode or woke me up in the middle of the night.

The alien dreams were pretty terrifying- you know the ones, the big black eyes and grey skin. My eyes do a weird jumpy thing even now when I saw a picture of aliens unexpectedly, though the fear has abated somewhat.

Before the aliens, I had a fear of skeletons, and I would often dream of skeletons being hidden in closets or in the shower or something- you know the sort of dream where you walk into a bathroom and pull back the shower curtain to find a skeleton just standing there.

In other dreams, I would walk down a dark hallway to my room, and I would see a skeleton standing in the doorway.

This went on for years.

In one dream, I was in the Master Bathroom, and my family was in there as well. A skeleton appeared in the bathroom, and I looked desperately around to my family- all of whom ran out in a sort of cartoon-like way, you know where the characters’ bodies zoom out, followed by their now-elongated neck and head snapping to catch up with the body, and I was left to contend with the skeleton on my own.

That was one of those nightmares where I desperately wanted to wake up but couldn’t.

That was the kind where no matter how hard I shut my eyes in the dream or tried to cover them, I could still see.

All such things eventually led to my getting up as early as possible when I was young.

That’s since changed- somewhere around adolescence I began to enjoy sleep more and have less nightmares. That’s around the time that the nutcases at the  church we attended started preaching about how sleep was “evil” according to the Bible and other idiotic statements that could go in a record book of How and Why Ignoramuses Ruin Religion for good, decent folk.

The real issue these days is twofold- I wish I slept better, and more than sleeping better, I wish I could awaken better. I wish that I could awaken in a good mood with plenty of energy.

Instead, I wake up feeling like a bus slammed into me.

Maybe one day I’ll figure out what’s causing that and won’t attribute it to old age. 30 is hardly the age to start falling apart.

So if you sleep well and have nice dreams, can wake up well and feel energized, then CELEBRATE that reality.

Steve

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