I am disturbed by my dreams.
I've always had vivid nightmares featuring myself in some completely freakish scenarios in which I often die. People say if you die in your dreams, you die in real life. Not true. I'm still alive. Last I checked.
I woke up this morning a few minutes before five o'clock, and apparently I had been either thrashing around or doing that strangled screaming thing that I do, because I woke Eliot up as well. (He's been crawling in bed with me a lot lately, and frankly, I don't mind the company.) I had been dreaming that I suddenly became unable to breathe, that my chest felt as though something were crushing it, and I couldn't speak. I had to use emphatic, frantic gestures to alert my sister and mom that something was wrong. Somehow they were able to diagnose me as having a collapsed lung; as soon as she said it (I don't know whether it was Mom or Elecia), I realized that, yes, that was exactly what was wrong. My left lung had collapsed.
The dream then switches scenes to some sort of rudimentary doctor's office, where a scary looking dude with wild hair and dirty scrubs shoves a gigantic pair of leather(?) tongs down my throat and pulls out, not one, not two, but THREE live rats, one at a time. I can feel them struggle as they're pulled up and out of my mouth, and they scratch and tear me from the inside.
That isn't even the worst part.
The worst part is that the "doctor" concludes that there is one more rat down inside me, but he can't reach it, so he's going to have to leave it in there. The pressure on my chest is somewhat relieved, but I can still feel a lingering heaviness and the squirming of the remaining rat and he struggles inside my left lung.
Is this psychotic or what? I think the part that disturbs me the most is that the tongs are leather. Why are they leather?!
So I'm sitting up in bed, completely freaked out, thinking, "Egads, I thought I was crazy yesterday, when I woke up with a random Rick Springfield song running through my mind. Bring back the Rick Springfield! I'll take him over lung rats any night! What twisted, sick material lurks in my brain that leaks into my consciousness at night? How did it get there? I don't watch horror movies. I don't like gristly television dramas about DNA evidence and blood splatter patterns and rotting corpses. I don't even read Stephen King. So where does this crazy shit come from?
Eliot sits up and blinks a few times, sleepily, and asks, as though we're in the middle of a conversation already, "What's the green one's name?"
I'm puzzled. "The green one?"
"Yeah. The blue one that plays music is DJ, but what's the green one's name?"
And then I know he's talking about the characters in the Disney film Cars.
"Boost?" I offer.
"No. That's not it. The green one!?"
"Oh. You mean Wingo?"
"Yeah, Wingo. That's it. Wingo. He's green."
He turns back over on his side and sighs.
"I love juice."
"I know you do, sweetheart. Go back to sleep."
"Night night, Mommy."
I envy Eliot his ability to dream about Cars, about the things he thinks about most often during the day, and the things he loves. But mostly, I'm relieved that he apparently didn't inherit my gene for crazy-ass, twisted nightmares. I gave him asthma. I guess that was enough.
Tonight when I go to sleep, I'm going to cross my fingers and focus my thoughts on dark chocolate, my pink Chuck Taylors, and the movie You've Got Mail. We'll see what happens.