Friday, May 10, 2013

Why Dreams Are Important (Growing Old Together)

I'm one of those people that believe dreams mean more than we realize. I think dreams are a way for the subconscious to express itself, and they usually mean something. And this is why.

I used to be pretty terrified of crocodiles. The most common nightmare I had as a kid was one where crocodiles would be hiding under my bed. My foot would brush the carpet, and a giant pair of alligator jaws would crunch down on my ankle. Screaming, I would be dragged underneath my twin bed and fall onto a spongy swamp floor. Water would ripple, and my limbs would disappear in a bloody mass of flying tissue and torn skin.

But I wasn't deranged or anything. Just imaginative.

Then my nightmares suffered from my middle-child syndrome. The one where you think your family doesn't really love you, they just act like it. I had dreams of my parents getting divorced; my mother would keep my older sister, my father would keep my younger brother, but neither one would want to keep me. So my sad, curly-haired little self would be left in an orphanage to face all kinds of bad people. I understand now (at my mature age of 21, a-ha-ha) that this was all rubbish. But teenage-dom is the age of self-centered angst, after all.

Maybe I watched a little too much Annie.

Just recently, I worked a job that I grew to absolutely despise (for obvious purposes, no names will be dropped here). For quite some time now, I thought it would be really awesome to become a bartender. Good money, good people, good times, it was all located in bars. I found somewhere that was willing to hire me, and I was so stoked for the opportunity. But it wasn't exactly what I was lead to believe it would be. It wasn't anyone's fault, but I just was completely uncomfortable with the situation and felt unprepared to do the things that they were asking me to do.

Anyway, my anxiety about this job was through the roof. Completely high-strung, ridiculously distracting from the entire rest of my life. Including my dreams. Last night, I had a dream that I was at this job. I was working the bar all alone, and I also had to work a kitchen. Scrambling to serve a bunch of customers that had just come in, I threw some hot dogs in the microwave. When I took them out, the hot dogs had turned to snakes who were attacking my arms with their venomous fangs. This morning, I realized the time I was wasting trying to like this job that seemed like such a good experience. Something was obviously wrong if I was spending so much time worrying and obsessing over it.

So I quit today.

Some people think that dreams are just some nonsense, something that just happens while you sleep. But I truly believe they are worth paying attention to. If they weren't, why would dreams be so specific to the things that are going on in your life? Why would some dreams terrify us so much, that we jerk awake in a frenzy? Or make us so sad, that we wake up with tear-stained pillows and salt crusted eyes?

Dreams are worth it, watch your subconscious closely.

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