The Dreamer

When I was a child there were events that stuck in my mind for life. There is one of them below. Once I and a neighbors’ girl, a year younger than me, were playing dolls a la Barbie at her house. We did not have authentic dolls by Mattel, and we got by with their imitations made in China. And so I asked my neighbor, “What do you dream about before going to bed?” I don’t even remember what made me ask this question. She did not understand my question, and then, upon that short conversation I found that she usually went to bed, closed her eyes and fell asleep. She did not lie in bed for two hours, or more, even all night through; she did not experience in her mind any other times, worlds and bodies. My surprise at that moment was drilled into me and knocked from time to time, and so at the age of 37 it could knock until I decided to tell about it.

I thought all people dream, especially before going to bed. Maybe, it is hereditary? 😊 My father and I sometimes even could bump into each other at night, being so intensely absorbed in thought that we could not lie quietly. And we exchanged our thoughts, “what are you dreaming of?”, “And you?”. And then over dinner we were discussing our thoughts.

I can conveniently classify my dreaming processes into two types. The first type is a dream to dream for a while. And the second one is a dream to get possession of.

The dreams of the first type. Many a time this ability to be deep in thought saved me. When someone in real life inflicted soul wounds on me, I ran into one of my fantasy worlds. I didn’t run from life, and I didn’t shelter from it. I was sheltering in my hideout, where in my mind I was in those places where I needed to be and with only those whom I needed. In that world, I was surrounded only by that and those who could help me recover from my anguish. In my world, I licked my wounds, rehabilitated and prepared myself to return to the real world with renewed vigor. I didn’t run away, I didn’t hide, I was sitting out. They say it is dangerous to live in a world of fantasy, that you can stay there forever and not return to reality. Even if it is so. That means that the mind of such a person considered that to be the only way out to live on. That means that reality turned out to be too hurtful and unsuitable for life.

For me, the significance of the ability to dream is defined in a single sentence. I read it one day back in my childhood, and it is one of those sentences that imprinted on my heart. “Dreams are not an escape from reality, but a means to approach it.” I do not know the author of these words, and I have never even wondered who he is, but perhaps it is time to find out it, since it is the case of my essay. So, Google tells that the author is Somerset Maugham, a writer and British spy in Russia. Now my reader and I know a little bit more.

The dreams of the second type. For me, ever since I was a child, this opportunity of unity with myself, with my thoughts, has been one of the most valuable moments in my life. Before going to bed, or while taking a bath, waiting my turn, or at the dentist’s having my braces fixed, and so on. But the most favorite of such options is while driving a car, alone, especially very early in the morning, and for the whole day on business. Everything makes sense there – the music making a background for dreams and often generating them itself, and complete immersion no one can distract from with their calls and messages for they are still sleeping, and the fact that at this moment you are busy for you are driving on business, not “doing nothing”, as in the case of taking a bath. For me, taking a bath is probably the most difficult moment of compromise with myself. I really do not like spending time without bringing anything to this moment, as if I see time aimlessly flying past me, and it depresses me. I may not need to take a bath for a while. Only shower. Muscle pains, cold, or complete physical and emotional exhaustion can make me take a bath. And the fact that, as a result of a beneficial effect, while taking a bath wonderful thoughts and ideas, and solutions to various issues often cross my mind…

What do I dream about? Well, about everything. And it’s pointless to even try detail. However, as challenging as dream can be in its realization, my mind divides it into simpler dreams realizing which would make the original dream possible. And then, in my mind, I have options and ways to achieve these dreams lined up. And at a certain moment, it occurs to me – it is realizable for human capacity, and not only for a hero with superpowers. And at this very moment, I start drawing up a precise plan in my mind. And any dream, absolutely any, becomes the last plan item. All that is left to do is step by step to carry out step by step the items located in ascending order of impossibility. And upon passing a certain number of points, and looking back at what you have already managed to do, at what back in the day seemed unrealizable, you think that those thongs ahead are feasible, that everything is possible. And it motivates me to go ahead. Sometimes fly, sometimes walk, sometimes crawl. But still keep this motion vector. When you have a new plan, and you are on the way of realizing the very first items, and there is nothing to look back to and get motivated, then it is terrifying, often depressing and it is tempting to yield. And the more complicated the plan, the more intense this fear.

And now I have a new plan, and I’m terribly scared.

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