Does anybody ever have reoccurring dreams? That was a stupid question, of course people have reoccurring dreams. I was just thinking of an interesting way to open this up, but that wasn’t interesting at all, that rhetorical question. I don’t get reoccurring dreams. Not in the sense of an identical dream happening on different nights.
I do experience reoccurring themes in my dreams. And from what I’ve read online, some of this stuff is pretty universal. Like the dream where your teeth fall out, apparently that’s common. And I’ve had that dream, kind of. It’s not like they just fall out, it’s usually more of, I’ll be really angry in the dream, and my jaw is just really clenched, like totally clamped down, to the point where my muscles are cracking my teeth, and slowly they start breaking and crumbling and falling out of my mouth.
A few times I’ve woken up suddenly with these images fresh in my mind, and my jaw will be tight, as if I’d been acting out the dream with my mouth. My bottom teeth might even be out to the side, or locked in a weird under bite, and it’ll take half a minute or so for everything to relax itself, all the while I’m still coming to, running my tongue along my gum line, making sure that everything is still where it was before I went to bed.
Or there are those dreams where I’ll be in a fight with someone else, I’ll be really angry, a full-blown rage. All I want to do in my dream is to pummel my opponent with my bare hands, but all of my blows land without any force. I’ll punch as hard as I can, but it’s like I’m underwater, there’s some sort of invisible resistance rendering my attacks totally useless. All the while, whoever I’m fighting is just standing there, laughing at me, not even bothering to fight back.
Speaking of underwater, what about the dreams where you’re face down in a puddle of water, but you can’t muster the strength to roll over? I’m thankful that I don’t get these too frequently, but they’re an often enough thing that, when I do find myself in dreamland being suffocated by an inch or two of standing water, something in my brain kicks in, it says, easy Rob, this is that puddle dream, you’re going to be fine. And even though I’ll realize it to be true, I still can’t help but to resist, futilely rocking my immobile body from side to side, the imminent sense of suffocation inducing a palpable terror so real that, when I finally pry myself awake, I do so with exaggerated breaths, I’m gulping for air. I think, is this like my jaw being locked, was I really not breathing in real life?
Probably one of the more frustrating reoccurring dream themes I experience is where I’ll realize that I have the ability to fly. Sometimes it’s just me that has this power, but a lot of the time it’s like everyone can fly. I look above me and there are swarms of people taking to the skies, everyone is euphoric, it’s like the whole population discovered their abilities all at the same time, and it’s this mass celebration, there’s not a single person left on the ground.
Except for me. I can fly, but only kind of. I’m trying as hard as I can, but the best I can manage is to float maybe six inches off the ground. And it’s a struggle just to maintain what little height I have. I can feel all of the muscles in my body clenched, and every minute or so, I have to rest on the ground, like I can’t keep it up, even though I know that I have it within me, if only I could just figure out what I’m doing wrong.
But then maybe I’ll be floating along, six inches over a puddle when I’ll lose it, I’ll plop down into the water and I can’t breath, so I struggle and I squirm but I can’t push myself back up, and I’m getting so frustrated, every muscle in my body is tight, even my jaw, especially my jaw, and through the muffled sounds of my choking for breath, I can hear the cracks, my teeth are splitting, cracking, they’re all falling out. By now I totally know that I’m in a dream, but part of that terror is still so real, despite the realization that I’ll wake up any minute in my bed, caked in sweat, checking to make sure that I haven’t chipped a tooth or punched the wall behind my bed.