At the end of a busy day there is nothing more comforting than to curl up under the covers, head resting gently on a pillow. The muscles relax, the body settles, sleep is nudging at your brain cells… Soon… Soon… Sleep. “To sleep: perchance to dream. Ay, there’s the rub . . .”
Excessive amounts of time and money have been spent trying to explain why and how we actually dream. Sometimes a difficult problem can be solved while we sleep. Sometimes we live in a fantasy. Sometimes we get the knickers scared off us! And sometimes we either do not dream or we simply cannot remember them. There are times our dreams leave us unsettled, irritated for reasons we do not understand. Have our dreams touched a nerve that we are not aware of? Through our dreams have we touched another? What does our mind do when we are sleeping, when our bodies have no control?
They say that we are at our most restful sleep when we reach REM: Rapid Eye-Movement. We may appear to be comatose but our eyes are moving constantly hence the name. When we are sleeping the deepest is that when our minds are active? When our eyes are closed what does our brain see? What does our mind extrapolate? These are questions I am not sure I want answered.
I love to dream. I think of it as a very inexpensive quick vacation. In University I took a psychology course where they encouraged us to write down our dreams. For years I kept a note pad and a pen near my bed and as soon as I woke up, I wrote down impressions or ideas, thoughts that had come to me in the night and I had been able to retain. Some were nonsensical but others… Within a few hours the memory of those thoughts had evaporated. When I looked back at my notes, I was often surprised. But I occasionally found solutions to problems I had been cogitating for days. That intrigues me. Does our mind have the ability to work without direction? Are our brains and our minds actually two different entities that work together but have the ability to work separately? There is a scary short story in that… Yes, I have gotten many of my story ideas in the middle of the night, not always when I’m awake.
I find going to sleep is like going into a movie theatre not know what movie I am going to see. I don’t even know what kind of movie it is. I find that exhilarating! Sleep well tonight, you never know who you might meet. Maybe I’ll see you there . . .