Sleepwalking

There were a few months I spent in flux or in purgatory or wherever it is when you’re trapped between everywhere and nowhere. I had some jobs but not the job, a place to sleep but one that didn’t belong to me; it was like I was on my way to a real life but had run out of gas or misplaced the directions. And inside of me was a seed; a tiny grain of stress implanted in my brain that grew larger and larger each day like a limbo tumor. Begging for acknowledgement with all the grace of a middle child. But I didn’t water it or rip it out of the ground, I simply ignored it and so it grew and it started to act out.

During this time I would go to sleep in one place and wake up somewhere else. Asleep in bed, awake on a couch. Asleep in a guest room, awake in a basement. I would climb stairs and make a new bed in a new room and I’d have no idea what’d happened when I woke up. It’s like my body was trying to run away from my mind.

When life became a bit more structured, the sleepwalking ceased but the stress remained and manifested in other ways – hives, insomnia, panic attacks. I still sleepwalk occasionally but it’s different now. Now I sometimes walk through an entire day on autopilot, conscious and unconscious at the same time. I numbly and mindlessly complete tasks, I see friends and acquaintances, I ride the subway and physically, I’m there. You can touch me and talk to me and it’ll feel like a real interaction.

But the truth is, some days I only know where my mind is when I’m sleeping. I have these frighteningly vivid dreams and in them, I see people I can’t talk to in waking life. We work through our issues together; we are fighting or making up or just, being something we’re not anymore. I’m traveling and taking risks and coming to terms with things I can’t change. It’s all incredibly lucid; it’s like having a second life – one where I have control. Night after night, I gain a sense of closure only to have it ripped from me when an alarm sounds. Alarm is exactly what I feel when a dream culminates.

When a dream ends, I feel this artificial peace; something and nothing has been solved inside of me. And it feels euphoric, momentarily, until I remember that it was just a dream. I am not in love, I am not in Europe, I did not set the world right in seven hours. All I’m left with in the morning is a question – when am I going to wake up? TC mark

image – Luca Sehnsuct

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  • lalala

    have you met your Tyler Durden?

  • CUinNYC

    It’s not a tooomah

  • Michelle

    So beautiful. 

  • Anonymous

    “I have these frighteningly vivid dreams and in them, I see people I
    can’t talk to in waking life. We work through our issues together; we
    are fighting or making up or just, being something we’re not anymore.”

    So so true and great and perfectly put.

  • http://twitter.com/miatard mia

    dreams are practice, science says, now you know what to do

  • http://twitter.com/Erikhaspresence Erik Stinson

    the only cool article on TC today —> 5 comments

  • Sam

    “It’s like my body was trying to run away from my mind.” 
    You get me. Thanks for all you write.

  • Anonymous

    phlpn.es/7x9vmd

  • Guest

    One of my favourites that you’ve written to date. Keep writing, this was beautiful!

  • Anonymous

    phlpn.es/7x9vmd

  • http://twitter.com/Tiggeruth Ruthy

    Wow! I can honestly say that this and “A Thank You To My Body by Abby Perkins” are my favorites of ALL Thought Catalog articles. 

  • http://www.twitter.com/mexifrida Frida

    I think we all want to just wake up.
    Perfect article.

  • Joanna

    This was really, really nice. Thank you!

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