Beware: this post may contain slightly disturbing imagery. Although I love sleep and genuinely look forward to falling asleep most nights, I struggle with periodic bouts of vivid nightmares. Typically these nightmares happen on the nights that I fall asleep early and forget to take the Tylenol and muscle relaxant I am supposed to take each night before bed. Well last night was one of those nights. The dream didn't start off too strangely, but contained some odd symbolism: My mom informed me that a koala bear expert was coming to town and that I should consider interviewing him. So my friend Nikki and I set out to find the koala bear expert's house and visit him in person. We found it and let ourselves in without an invitation and without even bothering to knock. Inside we found the expert (who was the spitting image of the villainous Bachelorette contestant Bentley) and his wife who was a blond woman with creepy eyes so light they were almost completely white. They were both singing songs together and invited us to join. Shortly thereafter the man tried to inject us with something from a giant syringe. Ever inquisitive even in my dreams, I asked what it was. He said he couldn't tell us. He followed us around the dark home with the syringe and we politely informed him that it was time for us to go. He continued to follow us out to the parking lot, syringe in hand walking slowly behind us. We got into the car and slammed the doors without ever getting an interview. And then I woke up.
In this dream I got the impression that this man was either evil and trying to kill us with an injection of poison, or perhaps trying to exploit us for some kind of secretive experiment. Either way, the feeling I got was certainly not a good one. And sure, I can see how my unconscious brain concocted this curious combination of imagery (I had watched The Bachelorette the night before and remember thinking what a creep Bentley was, koalas are my favorite animal, and I had been talking to my friend Nikki earlier that night). The injection thing I can only guess has something to do with my mistrust of doctors coupled with the feeling that family members and potential employers are figuratively poking at me right now by constantly expecting me to prove my worth to them, something that has certainly been nagging at me lately. This has been my first nightmare in several weeks and I am hoping it was just a fluke that had something to do with me forgetting to take my meds.
A few months back I experienced a series of peculiar nightmares, but they all ended okay, that is, a resolution was achieved and I knew I was safe from danger before awakening. The real problem with these nightmares is that they are so darn real. Everything is so vivid and unlike my current reality there's no woozy spells, blurry vision or lightheadedness to make me feel disconnected from my surroundings. The first in this bunch of nightmares involves me standing at a busy 5-way intersection where the traffic lights aren't working. It is a foggy day and everything is in shades of black, white and gray (but then again that's not too unlike a dreary pacific northwest day anyway). I stand there alone watching the cars coast through the intersection and wonder how I will ever make it across five lanes of uncontrolled traffic. Emerging from the fog walks Lenny Kravitz toward me complete with signature sunglasses on. He offers me his hand without saying a word and without hesitation I take it and instantly realize that I can trust him and that he will get me safely to my destination. His mere presence somehow magically stops the traffic as he walks me across the street and to the nearby college where I was apparently enrolled in an art class.
The next dream involves me outside of my old studio stomping grounds searching frantically for my cameraman. The scene is also foggy and black and white. I am literally running around the campus looking for my cameraman and somehow get my foot stuck in the railroad tracks as a train is imminently approaching. And once again, out of nowhere who comes to save the day but Mr. Kravitz himself. He gives me his hand and literally pulls my foot loose from beneath the tracks and I make it safely to the other side back on solid ground.
The third and final dream in the Lenny Kravitz series is simply me drowning in the deep saltwater beneath a bridge. I have no idea how I got to the middle of the sound. It is another gray and foggy day and I know I am far from land. A lifeboat miraculously appears out of the blue and Lenny Kravitz pulls me safely into the boat.
Now although these dreams were very scary and I was either on the brink of imminent danger or death, at least there was a trustworthy figure there to rescue me. The fact that he happened to be Lenny Kravitz, I have no idea why. I have always known who he is, enough to at least have recognized him in my dream that is, but to tell you the truth I was not all that familiar with him until I looked him up after I started having these recurrent dreams. In the dreamworld he was not showing any piercings or tattoos and his hair and attire were both quite subdued. His only memorable features were the sunglasses and his outreached hand, and the fact that he never spoke a word. Almost as if he was a ghost or a guardian angel or something. After conducting some Google research I discovered that he has a daughter about my age, is a very spiritual person without a specific allegiance to either Christianity or Judaism, and is of course a talented singer/songwriter/producer/musician/actor. Ironically enough, he played a very similar figure to the one in my dreams, a comforting male nurse in the movie 'Precious.' I saw that movie prior to any of these dreams, but never realized that it was him who played that role.
However, now that the Lenny Kravitz dreams have stopped, I have had to save myself from predatory white male middle-aged villains in the nightmares since then. Perhaps I will save those dream descriptions for another post as they are even more disturbing and include guest appearances from an array of even more random celebrities.
I know people struggle with nightmares from time to time regardless of any particular medical conditions, but my question is, are they always this vivid? If you do suffer from strange dreams, have you always? Or is this yet another weird symptom of dysautonomia?