Saturday, December 17, 2011

When dreams resemble reality and reality is like a dream

Hello! Remember how I said I was going to write every other day this month?

There are several reasons I did not. Aside from the ones that fall under the category of "busy," there is one compelling reason, which is that my eyes (well, actually only one) were acting up and I was trying to limit computer time since I spend so much time on the computer between work and school.

The thing with my eyes. Well, it started in November. I was washing dishes late one night while HM was out somewhere. I was hoping he'd come home soon; I was starting to get antsy and paranoid about how if someone managed to break into our third-floor apartment (not likely) they might attack me with my own cast iron skillet or hot canning water or who knows what. (Anne of Green Gables fans might remember the Haunted Wood chapter--the moral of which is that imaginative people think of very imaginative creepy things.) Anyway, I was washing dishes when I saw, out of the corner of my left eye, a big giant FLASH. It looked like someone fired off a flashbulb right in my kitchen. I looked and saw nothing out of the ordinary. I turned back to my dishes. It happened again!!!!! I turned, looked out the window, and stared for awhile. Eventually I observed that my neighbors, about a block away (but visible because ours are the only buildings with third floors, so the shorter buildings in between do not block our view into each others' houses) were watching TV. Somehow, my eyes were interpreting the FLASH of the TV as something much greater and closer. That or I had been abducted by aliens and blocked out everything that truly happened between FLASHes, creating a false memory of continuing to wash dishes.

It happened again, a week or so later, on the plane to New Jersey. Handsome Man was sitting next to me watching a movie on his laptop. When his screen flashed, I saw a FLASH as though a big giant camera had gone off next to the airplane window. Since that is not possible, I knew for sure that something was wrong with my eyes.

When I got back to Portland, the big tree in Pioneer Square was already up and lit. The following is a picture found on Google Images:

As a side note, if you look up the Pioneer Square tree, much of what you'll find is a mug shot of a Somali-looking guy. I guess it's the guy who got arrested after not managing to bomb the Portland tree lighting. I mention this because to non-Portlanders, this is probably the only reason one might know what the Pioneer Square tree is.

Anyway. I chose this picture because it shows most accurately, of all the Google Images, what this tree really looks like, which is blue. Also, it has these GIANT FLASHING twinkle lights. Or...wait...are they really GIANT and FLASHING? Perhaps they are normal twinkle lights. But the first few weeks I was back in Portland, riding the MAX every weekday, watching that tree out of the corner of my eye for the five minutes that the MAX would wait at a stop near Pioneer Square, what I saw were a multitude of crazily huge bright FLASHes. That tree made me feel like I was losing my mind. Being on the MAX at Pioneer Square was like being in a surreal dream.

I have since seen a doctor and found that there is currently nothing seriously wrong with my eyes--just a pigment clump (but not a tear) on my left eye's retina. This and other things are being monitored, but for now my eyes are fine.

So, while reality has felt, because of these flashes, like a weird dream, my dreams resemble the most humdrum aspects of reality.

Yes, some of you may have guessed right. I am dreaming about work. And schoolwork. And housework.

Another co-worker has shared similar thoughts, so I don't feel like a huge nerd for admitting this. Sometimes I wake up in the morning thinking about file numbers. Sometimes my dreams are a certain screenshot of the esoteric program we use at work - the one that shows documents merging - and I am peacefully watching lots and lots of file numbers go by as the documents merge without any error messages. [Part of my job is being the IT lady, so if there are error messages, it's my problem to find out why.]

I've heard that some people get mad at their significant other because of dreams. Such as they dream that their significant other is cheating, and wake up mad. Usually, I do the opposite. Once HM and I got in a dramatic fight, then went to bed, and I dreamt about what a nice person he is. I dreamt that he was helping the less fortunate or something sappy like that. I woke up happy and had completely forgiven him.

The opposite happened this morning. This morning, HM awoke to find me in the kitchen, angrily, grouchily making a frittata. Angrily making us both breakfast, I barked at him to make coffee. After awhile, I realized why I was so angry at him (besides need for caffeine and low blood sugar.) I had dreamt last night that while I was asleep, he had snuck into the kitchen to "clean out" the freezer and started throwing out things I was saving. In the dream, I woke up and was frantically trying to rescue gallon bags of frozen peaches and my unhealthy frozen burrito's from WinCo.

This post (and its bad punctuation) brought to you by liquid Christmas tree, in a good way


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