September 09, 2009


I wasn't sick very much growing up, but on a few occasions when I was so sick that I was bed-ridden, I'd have the same recurring dream of balancing a checkbook. It wasn't always my own checkbook, sometimes it was a company's ledger, a friend's budget, but it was always the same formula -- some type of elementary math pertaining to money and the frustrating feeling of numbers never adding up correctly. It was exhausting and the sleep never felt restful. I'm sure it had something to do with my fever rather than a deep seeded hatred of math, but I like to think those dreams are at least partially responsible for steering me clear of any career involving numbers. Being an accountant, for me, literally would be a nightmare!

I've always had incredibly vivid dreams. I like to bombard Garrett with the detailed stories about things I've seen or done in my sleep right when I wake up because it's such a unique feeling to put dreams into words immediately after having them. Most often what was just so clear in sleep comes out like a drunken Lewis Carrol imitation. Everything that made perfect sense moments ago vaporizes into absolute gibberish in a literal blink of an eye, and as someone who loves finding the perfect words in order to communicate an idea -- it's sort of an amusing exercise in futility.

Granted, Garrett is not always amused by my effusiveness, since I often do this in the middle of the night if my dream was particularly noteworthy. Most of the time he at least he plays along and acts impressed with my spectacular feats of subliminal imagination, although he usually patiently commands that I go back to sleep. For the record, however, I also sleep-walk, sleep-shower, and sleep-get dressed for work in the middle of the night, so I guess in comparison my midnight monologues sort of pale next to waking up and finding that I have turned into a zombie-like version of myself, but you know, you take the good with the bad, right?

I know, I know. Sorry boys, I'm taken.

Shortly after my father passed away, a number of people who surely intended to be a source of comfort told me I should "watch for him" in my dreams. I kind of chuckled at the hippy-dippy thought of all that, but 11 years after the fact, my father and I have had a remarkable number of very spirited sub-conscious interactions while dreaming. One of the most memorable dream encounters with my father found me sitting at the kitchen table in my grandparents old house (why, I have no idea?) looking for relationship advice about this new found crush of mine named Garrett. It was shortly before we started dating and Garrett was being Mr. Mixed Signals, so obviously I must have been having a frustrated moment. As an aside, when my dad was alive we were totally prone to these "Girl Talk" chats, so it was no surprise to be table-side with him listening to my romantic woes. Though I can't even remember what dramatic thing I was complaining about, what I do remember is my dad just laughing hysterically and in a clear throwback to his University of Hawaii days, giving me the Shaka sign and saying, "Calm Down, Holly," in his oft-used Hawaiian Pidgin. "Everything's gonna be alright." And every once in a while when I realize Garrett has yet to kick me and my crazy night time behavior out of bed, I think to myself -- it totally is.

1 comment:

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