When You Wish Not to Dream


I don’t often post about my dreams but this one has managed to stick with me, whereas that is far from the norm. Most of my dreams evaporate even before my eyes open, once my mind is woken from sleep, regardless of how detailed or long they have lasted throughout the night. Not this one. This one I remember just about every details, every emotion, and that might be because this was a nightmare.

I stood in line with Elizabeth at bakery or a deli, waiting for our turn to order and pick up what we wanted. Behind me, a man started to play with my hair, pick at it, saying I had “nits” in my hair. I was extremely uncomfortable and turned, telling him not to please not touch me. He just grinned in an unsettling way and reached for my hair again, which garnered a more forceful, “Don’t touch me!” A good Samaritan standing nearby interjected, reiterating to the man who I had said not to touch him. When the offender, simply shook him off and turned for me again, the man trying to help grabbed him up by the collar, dragging him from the line and away from me. I grabbed hold of Elizabeth’s stroller and tried to get out of there; I was scared, no doubt.

The first man, however, shoved off my defender and pulled out a weapon, a gun, which immediately set the store into a panic! I huddled in a corner near the door, covering Elizabeth in her stroller with my own body. I felt like I was drowning, my heart was pounding so fast and I was so afraid. The man with the gun grabbed another nearby woman. Holding her as a hostage and shield and pointing the gun at those gathered in the store, he ordered that everyone was to get down, no one was to call the police, and he was leaving. As they backed out the door, I clung to Elizabeth’s stroller for dear life, trembling. I heard him stop next to where I was crouched near the door, mutter something intelligible, and then the gun fired. And I screamed. I can still hear my scream, can still feel the bullet tear and burn through my lower back again and again.

I awoke in a fright, sitting up in bed. I turned towards Elizabeth’s room but hearing no disturbance there, I rolled over and grasped my husband and just cried, forcing myself to stay awake for as long as I could manage before exhaustion claimed me again. All day, that horrific nightmare has stuck with me. I can still hear myself screaming, I can still feel the burning pain in my lower back. It’s the only dreams lately that I have had that I can remember, and I really, really wish I could forget it.

Maybe writing it down here isn’t necessarily conducive to forgetting but I am trying to exorcise this from my brain so, hopefully, I can get some relief from it.

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