When I woke up, I wasn’t sure if I was dreaming or awake. My dreams were a lot like memories, and I know this sounds like Inception, but nothing was cool or upside down, and Joseph Gordon Levitt was definitely not there.
I dreamt I was in an elevator. And correct me if I’m wrong, but I think when you enter an elevator in your head, you start penetrating deeper levels of consciousness. I went through an elevator of high school and college. It was strange. I don’t want to know what’s there. Even in just a dream, I don’t want to visit the deeper levels of my brain.
We build walls of sanity up for a reason, you know? With medicine, therapy, and just with general, rational advice. It’s unsettling when irrational thoughts seep through the cracks. I don’t want them.
But they just come through anyway. Then it’s like…one day, I just turn around and all of these nutty thoughts are in my head and I don’t know how they got there. For instance, last night I was watching The Family Man with my Dad last night. An innocent movie with Nicholas Cage on ABC Family. Except for it isn’t an innocent movie- it’s a piece of shit movie that makes white men look like they’re the center of the universe.
These nutty thoughts kept popping up during the movie like: you better not age. You better take who will have you. You better not expect too much from these men. Lower your expectations. Improve yourself. Make yourself better, but lower your standards.
It’s sick, nasty logic that makes me feel bad. And I don’t believe it all the time, but sometimes sick, nasty thoughts will creep up on you and jump you in your sleep. Some people refer to these sick, nasty, untrue things as “demons”, but I don’t know if they’re as clear cut as that.
For me it’s just a fog: a fog of confusion that casts over me. There’s no face or body to the thoughts. They’re just these thoughts that can consume me, and sink into my skin.
It does feel a little bit like being possessed. Like yesterday, I was standing in Starbucks, waiting for my mom’s coffee, and I just started gazing at these two women. These two woman with dyed blond hair holding cell phones in their hands. And I just started thinking and thinking and wondering what the rest of their lives were like. I wondered who they used to be- were they like me? And I was doing what people generally call “spacing out”. And you know what I fucking hate about that?
When you’re staring into space, someone usually waves their hand in front of your face. Why are you doing that? I’m clearly in the middle of an all-consuming thought, and probably because I’m bored with the actual situation at hand. So let me float away into “space”, which is not space at all. It’s my head- it’s not space. Why call it “day-dreaming”? Since it’s not. I’m processing everything around me, and I’m just choosing to do it alone.
I’ll tell you this, if I’m ever a teacher, I’ll never call a student a “day-dreamer”. ‘Cause I know they’re not dreaming- they’re thinking. I’ll call them a day-thinker. And just because they’re not thinking about what I’m saying, doesn’t mean what they’re thinking about isn’t important. I’d really like to ask them one time: what are you thinking about? Clearly, things you’d like to know the answer to.
Are dreams really so insignificant? No. But of course, we can’t drive ourselves about it. But maybe people should pay a little more attention to their dreams, and to their thoughts. Because I don’t like it when dreams and thoughts just sneak up on me.