I woke suddenly and sat up. Terror reverberating throughout every piece of me.
I looked over. My five-year-old son had crawled into my bed at some point during the night. That’s not uncommon.
In. Then, out.
At some point a little over a year ago, I stopped remembering my dreams.
I remember some. But almost never anymore. This sticks out to me because I’ve spent most of my life having very vivid and memorable dreams.
I can remember reoccurring ones from my youth. Some frightening. Some happy. Some sad.
I can remember some sexually explicit dreams. Basically, if you’re female and we’re not related, my subconscious has had sex with you while I was sleeping.
- I’m sorry.
- I hope Fake You liked it.
But this week, I’ve had two dreams that have REALLY resonated with me.
They are different than any dream I can ever remember having before. And I want to be open-minded about what that might mean.
The night after reading this post by a lovely wife and mother that goes by K—and who says nicer things about me than anyone who is not my grandmother—I had a dream about an owl.
A white owl.
It was huge. I was in a strange house. The kitchen in this house was sectioned off by a large L-shaped island with overhead cabinets.
And looking through the gap between the cabinets and the counter below, I could see the owl.
But I was afraid. So afraid.
I didn’t want it to know I was there.
Still. So still.
Then it turned its head toward me.
And then I awoke.
“To see an owl in your dream symbolizes wisdom, insight, magic, expanded awareness and virtue,” according to Dream Moods. “You are highly connected to your intuitive senses and psychic power. The owl is also synonymous with death, darkness and the subconscious. The appearance of an owl may be telling you to let go of the past or certain negative behaviors.”
First I was walking the streets of a foreign town. Asia, maybe? Street vendors. The kind I’ve only seen on television.
And then, as dreams often shift suddenly, I find myself on a commercial jet, flying home.
I was in the front row. Alone, on the left side.
There is so much talking. Talking. Talking. Talking.
And then most of it stopped. And it sounded like it does on red-eye flights in the middle of the night.
Dark. Just the hum of the engines and air conditioning system.
I turned around, surprised that the talking had stopped suddenly.
Everyone had bags over their heads. Everyone for as far as I could see. Bags like this.
I turned to my right. There was one other person sitting up in the row opposite me. Then he leaned forward and covered himself with his coat.
I looked in front of me.
Even though there’s no way it could ever happen in real life, I could somehow see into the cockpit. And through the windshield into the lit sky.
And then the plane dove. Hard.
As if the pilots had done so intentionally.
No one screamed.
Like they knew it was coming. Like I was the only one to get on the plane without realizing it would never arrive at its destination.
I knew I was going to die. I accepted it more easily than I would in real life.
“Father, forgive me.”
Then, before the lights went out…
Breathe. Just breathe.
Your son is safe.
“To dream that a plane crashes signifies that you have set overly high and unrealistic goals for yourself. You are in danger of having those goals come crashing down,” Dream Moods said. “Alternatively, the crashing airplane represents your lack of confidence, self-defeating attitude and self-doubt. You do not believe in your own ability to achieve those goals. Loss of power and uncertainty in achieving your goals are also signified.
“To wake up before you crash in your dream may simply be the anticipation of the crash that jolts you awake. It is similar to the notion of waking up before you hit the ground from a fall.”
Maybe there’s some truth there.
After all, it’s not hard to recognize because it often hurts.
But I didn’t like the part suggesting I don’t believe in my ability to achieve my goals. Because I do believe I can.
And I don’t like the part where both dreams signify death.
Because I’m not ready. There’s so much left to do.
But we don’t control that. The hourglass balance is what it is and none of us will know until those final grains of sand hit the bottom.
All we can do is make the best of right now. Today. This moment.
So that’s what I’m going to do.
Because I woke up this morning thinking I was going to die.
But I didn’t.
My child, sleeping peacefully at my side.
In, then out.