wings and things


on November 4, 2013

I had a dream last night that someone I knew (it wasn’t clear in the dream who exactly he was), took me to a holiday house somewhere near the sea. It was a really shabby old house and I felt a bit reluctant to go in but I did anyway because I didn’t want to hurt his feelings. Then, once I was inside, the door shut with a clang, and I knew immediately that I was doomed because a hanging rope was already in place for me and the someone-I-knew became a cackling stranger who was going to hurt me before killing me. The terror I felt within that dream woke me up, and I entered the day in a daze of perspiring relief that it was just a nightmare.

Have I read too many books, seen too many movies, thought too many thoughts, felt too many emotions? Yes, probably, but this was the most frightening nightmare I have ever had. Of course this nightmare is not hard to interpret at all I guess – a bunch of mixed emotions following trauma; ongoing anxiety for all those affected by trauma; shame, guilt and embarrassment over the stupid things I’ve said and done since the trauma; and a momentary wish that I would die.

The nightmare has made me see much better what it must be like for Anthony when he experiences the night terrors and and hallucinations of his PDD. If I can experience such a vivid nightmare whilst being physically healthy, and wake up with my face covered in the sweat of terror, then what is he going through?

50 responses to “Nightmares

  1. With everything you’ve been through lately, your brain needed an outlet. Nightmares are horrible but they act as a safety valve.

  2. Rhonda says:

    While it is so like you to turn your own night terror into thoughts of what your beloved goes through, pay attention to your own stress levels too jules. Releasing them while you sleep is a good thing, but recognizing them in the daylight is important. You can do no one any good if you don’t take care of you. Make sure you use the outlets you have to help you deal with everything hanging over your head…and by that I mean US…keep writing, keep letting us in, and keep feeling the love and support we throw your way….xo

  3. I was thinking the same thing…how this nightmare would help you understand Anthony’s situation. What an awful dream though Jules… HUGS

  4. Tilly’s right as always, :), nightmare are ways for the psyche to cope and with the stresses that you have had, your mind was doing some housecleaning. What you said about having a taste of what Anthony goes through was spot on, but I hope that it doesn’t give you any more stress, now having a taste of what he may be feeling and not being able to change it. Hugs Jules.

  5. The terror in those nightmare moments is absolutely real. Then to have someone come along and started to manhandle you in some way during those terrifying moments. Wow. Sheer panic. Hugs to both you and Anthony.

  6. janechese says:

    That last question is a humbling thought.

  7. tersiaburger says:

    I have been having nightmares too of Vic needing we and me not being able to get to her….Hugs and sweet dreams my dear friend!!

  8. Perhaps it is an empathetic glimpse. Certainly you’ve been under an enormous amount of stress, which acts like shock upon shock on the system, needing release or refueling somehow. Take good care to do whatever you can for you, what brings you slow relaxing breaths, smiles, inner good feelings, however small. All these little things are boosts to your immune system to help you cope. It’s awful to be a stranger a million miles away wishing I could do something to help. I never feel my words are adequate and sometimes even too glib, especially after reading your last one with a deeper look at what your Ants is going through. From my own failings and shame, I can only imagine all you’re doing through. Sending you love and hopes for good moments in your days and gentle dreams in your sleep.

    • jmgoyder says:

      You are such a special person to me and nothing you have ever said has seemed glib. Thank you for your concern and support and friendship. It means a lot to me.

  9. tootlepedal says:

    I hope that you don’t have too many of these.

  10. ksbeth says:

    so sorry you are going through this as well as everything else you are dealing with. dreams let us feel things we may not be able to feel in our waking hours.

  11. I had repetitive horrible nightmares about people wanting to kill me years ago and it was at a time I was under stress. It is a most terrifying experience and it does linger for sure… In the past while I have had the hallucinations as well …which I hadn’t before.. It sure makes you wonder what on earth is going on .. So as you say … for Anthony to be having these types of things happen has got to be very scary for him.. .. I hope these are not recurring for you… take care … Diane

  12. WordsFallFromMyEyes says:

    It’s soulful of you to think of what Anthony must experience, when you’ve had such a horrible nightmare. You know, Julie, I often google ‘dream interpretation’. Do you ever?

    I couldn’t find anything on a hangman rope, but re ropes, “Ropes
    To see a rope in your dream represents your connection and attachment to others. It is symbolic of what is holding your relationship together. Alternatively, a rope signifies bondage, restriction and captivity.” Don’t know if that means anything to you.

    Thank goodness for waking up, though.

    Hope you are okay. N’n.

  13. To experience the trauma and guilt on top of the already the long-term care of Anthony and its associated grief all adds up. It sounds like a frightening dream. Take some time out if you can, for some self-nurturing.
    Take care.

  14. Vicki (from Victoria A Photography) says:

    Sorry to hear about those nightmares, Julie. Sounds horrible, but I believe nightmares, unless you’ve been watching a tv drama or doing something confronting, are usually brought on by our inner thoughts and emotions which we don’t release during our waking hours. I believe its the subconscious revealing itself.

    Saying that doesn’t mean they are not terrifying at the time we have them.

    Yes, it must be awful for Anthony to have them on such a regular basis. Nightmares are mainly distressing because they appear so real when we are awakened from them. The pictures keep flashing through our minds after we awaken, to the point where we feel as though we’ve actually been through the physical torment.

    I hope you were able to get some meds for Anthony on your last doctor’s visit (to help him). If you have more nightmares, you may need to follow up on some more counselling or regular meds yourself. Ensure you’ve got someone objective to chat to about your worries on a regular basis. Friends & Family can’t always be objective and helpful. Sometimes you get the feeling that despite their reassurances and nurturing, they don’t really understand how emotionally draining it is to have your partner going through PD & dementia. It’s very difficult to ‘let go’ and keep your own life on an ‘even keel’ at this difficult time.

    Sometimes it’s better to discuss these things with a qualified and experienced ‘stranger’ than a close family member or friend.


  15. Fergiemoto says:

    It’s been such a difficult time for you. I hope the nightmares calm down.
    I have had a bombardment of bad dreams lately, some very very intense. I know it is mostly from what is going on right now in our lives, coming out in different forms in my dreams. But still very difficult.
    I empathize with you.

  16. I so admire you for your constant attention to Anthony and how he feels, and trying to be a part of his moments, to understand them, and be there with compassion and never ending love. What a beautiful love you two share.

  17. Terry says:

    I hate dreams like that, especially when they are so real and I can remember them in the morning

    • jmgoyder says:

      It is probably because you and I are in such a daily struggle to cope – your situation is much worse, Terry, and I worry about you so much – you must be so exhausted. I love you.

      • Terry says:

        I am totally exhausted. I get dizzy from being so tired. Al keeps waking up during the nights now and this hurts my sleep, but I have no other choices, but now I am starting to really dig into finding different kinds of help. I love you too Julie and I think of you every day

      • jmgoyder says:

        Me too to you Terry – you need more help than your are getting!

  18. dcwisdom says:

    For them, it’s not only the nightmares but also the hallucinations they deal with. I hate it

  19. dcwisdom says:

    oops! I hate it for what it does for the entire family! I’m sorry, Julie. Prayers for your peace. XO

  20. I also have a share of nightmares and I have often wondered if the actual nightmare is not some sort of mental release in a sense? Don’t know. I hope things calm down and that you get a good nights rest.

  21. Judith says:

    I find it amazing that when you experience something disturbing, painful, or uncomfortable, you immediately apply your experiences to understanding others better. What a giving person you are. Admirable.

  22. I have had a few nightmares like that over the course of my life; all were memorable and caused the awful feelings that you describe. I hope they will be few and far between for you.

  23. janeslog says:

    At least it was a nightmare. It didn’t happen.

    I was once chased by a nutter in a country park while out running 10 years ago. He said he was going to slash my throat. I ran like a lunatic thinking I was going to scream, but there was nobody to hear me.

    I then asked God to help me and he did. I turned a corner and an elderly couple were in front of me. I screamed that a man was chasing me and he run away. When we got back to the visitor centre the police were contacted. After about a year, I was contacted by the police who told me the attacker had been caught and admitted 9 offences, including mine.

    He ended up in HMP Barlinnie jail (Bar L) in Glasgow for a long time.

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