2019-08-15 Nightmares and the Spoken Poem

I don’t have much to muse about today. I could ponder longer the nightmare that I had last night which was super creepy but I kinda don’t want it to linger any longer than necessary. What was interesting was that I was having trouble falling asleep and at about midnight I got up and went upstairs to grab my phone off the charger where I keep it overnight (I don’t usually keep it by my bed anymore .. to tempt me into distractions). I brought it down to put the noise app on thinking that might help with my sleep.

Last I checked my Fitbit the time was 12:10. Incredibly I was stirred awake less than half an hour later by the aforementioned nightmare. I woke up and looked at my Fitbit and it was 12:38. That means that I fell asleep and fell into REM sleep and had a dream all in like 25 minutes. Who knows how long dreams actually last but it felt like a long sequence. It makes me wonder if we dream in fast motion. Is our brain playing out a scene that in real life would take 10 minutes in like 1 or 2?

I don’t have much insight from the Fitbit app interpretation of my sleep cycles other than the confirmation that I was in REM around that time. I also had a spike in heart rate which is another stat that is tracked. I’m like, no shit, that dream was terrifying, no wonder my HR was elevated. It was one of those that was so real so when you wake you’re all like over the top grateful that it was a dream. Why does our brain make nightmares. What is THAT about anyway?

***

Today the kids are back in school and I have the whole day to work on reading and writing. After my morning walk and Jazzercise, I’m gonna get down into it.

Tonight there is another poetry reading I want to attend. I know two of the readers, sort of, and am interested in hearing them read. I find that some poems are better read on the page and some are better heard out loud. I can definitely say that I’ve written a few that I think really suck on the page but with a little performance they kind of “pop”.

I enjoy slam poetry events too but sometimes I feel like the poems all end up sounding the same. Same topics, same drama, same voice. People don’t slam about their gardens and actual love poems are rare. It seems to be that slam poems and the rest of the written discourse doesn’t intersect very much. Perhaps that’s just a green assessment from someone with fairly limited exposure.

Whatever.

That’s all I got today..Time to Jam.

Cheers,

~Miss SugarCookie

2019-03-29 Those are Not My Cats

This morning I woke up in the middle of a dream where I had just realized my cats were standing next to each other and they were not hissing in offense or defense. I was all like “hey, look at that! Do you see that?” And the cats in my dream did not look like my cats. They weren’t my cats but in my dream they were. What’s even stranger than that is that I was with my ex-mother-in-law who was showing me some cool new feature on the iPhone that makes it super easy to share pictures and videos.

She had some thing she wanted to share with me that had to do with the kids and I just didn’t know how I was going to access it. She was showing me the settings to change to turn on this super cool new sharing feature and then I got distracted by the cats, amazed that they were both just sitting there like normal cats. When I said “do you see that?” I’m confident I was saying it to Jim, so he must have been with us but I never saw him in the dream. Then I woke up.

Now I haven’t seen or talked to my exMIL in years. I was always her favorite DIL (she had 3), right up to the day we told her we were ending our marriage and I ruined her sons life and her picture perfect family. Well, yeah, on the surface things always look perfect because that’s what we’re programmed to do. Beneith that thin veneer, though, were secrets, lies, grief, alchoholism, and infidelity.

The day we broke the news she said to me “you are a strong woman and you can get through this, I survived and so can you”. WTF was that supposed to mean? It took me a bit of time to put the pieces together enough to recognize that she had gone through much of the same things I was experiencing. They stuck it out and managed to maintain that picture we are all taught to believe is the ideal life. Perhaps by then things were back to good for them, that there was an end to the very dark tunnel I was in. But I was not going to try any longer or waste any more time on what felt like a lost cause. A marriage isn’t supposed to be a “cause” anyway, it’s supposed to be a partnership.

No, I said “F that noise”. She was right about one thing.. I’m a strong woman. I was strong enough to leave her son and take my life back. It was a hard road, but I did it. Sometimes one day and one step at a time, and of course I’m still alive and tied to that part of my life and my ex through our beautiful children so the struggle is still challenging at times.

Like I said, I haven’t seen my ex-husband’s mom in years. I’m not sure why she showed up in my dream now and why she would be the one showing me a cool new iPhone feature when she was always technologically challenged (and I’m the engineer). Does that mean I have unresolved issues with that family? Does it mean I should hold on to hope for my cats actually getting along? Does it mean I should look into getting a new phone? Dreams are so strange. 😜

It’s Friday again.. and I’m so ready for the weekend. I’ve worked a full week already and am ready to forget all that and enjoy doing a whole lot of nothing important with my sweetie for a couple of days. We’re prolly gonna be doing a careful balancing act between binge watching shows, vacation planning, and getting stuff done around the house. It may not be the most exciting thing in the world but it’s far superior to the alternatives my stupid dream-brain has forced me to think about.

Time to Jam,

~Miss SugarCookie

2019-01-04 Dream-State Writing

Twice yesterday, from different sources, I was given the advice of writing first thing in the day. The first instance was in a lecture where the person giving the talk was explaining that when a person first wakes up, and their mind is still transitioning from the subconscious state of dreaming to the conscious state of being awake, it is the perfect opportunity to write. She said that when you are in that transition, which she called the “Dream-state” (I think), the logical thinking brain has not yet taken over the thought processes. It is the perfect opportunity to write and capitalize on a heightened, potentially more creative and open position the mind is in.

The second instance was when I met with Teri, my mentor from last semester and she urged me to take time each morning, whether it be over my morning coffee or before getting to work on anything else, and just write. Of course her advice was more about just carving out time to do that than anything else I think, but both sources provide a solid argument toward the same end.

I’ve been writing in the mornings about 90 percent of the time. I wouldn’t say I’m necessarily taking advantage of the state of my consciousness though as the burden of my waking state is an almost immediate “on” switch for my logical brain. The moment I open my eyes the wheels start to turn. I’m not sure this is a thing I can control, but perhaps as my life and priorities change I can “learn” how to change it.

Interestingly enough, I started this blog post yesterday afternoon after spending the whole day lost in a bunch of small tasks I was doing to try and make myself feel more productive with .. something. My thoughts all morning we’re about how I was procrastinating doing “actual” work and also about the dream I was having when Jim’s alarm clock went off.

I have an alarm in my phone I set when I’m with the kids and it’s “just in case” I sleep all the way to 7am. I have to wake them at 7. I typically wake before that though, so I’m not used to being abruptly jarred from a sleeping state. Jim’s alarm goes off before my body and mind are ready and I don’t like it. Two mornings in a row I was dreaming when the alarm went off.

So connecting the dots with the idea of taking advantage of a semi-conscious dream state when first waking, I may try to turn the alarm frown upside down by grabbing a notebook when that alarm goes off and write for 20 minutes. The last two mornings, my musings would have been all about the dreams I was having.

In my other blog, I have a category called “from the maker of dreams” and when I have written a dream out into story form, that’s where those are filed. It might be more appropriate to transition those stories to this blog. I think too much about organization and categorization and collection and definition and labels. So what though I guess, that’s just me.

Yesterday my dream was a very clear and cohesive story which seemed to have a point and purpose and was really going somewhere. Sometimes dreams don’t make any sense, but this one made complete sense and I think worth exploring a little. It was so vivid I recounted it at the breakfast table to Jim and that solidified it in my mind. I don’t have enough time now to write it out (it was long and involved) but the theme was very dystopian (or perhaps just alternate reality) and the scene opened with me in a long line/group of women having a small amount of personal effects/essentials gathered in our arms evaluated and scrutinized before allowing us to proceed. As if that was all we were going to be allowed to take with us where we were being sent. Yeah, worth writing out for sure.

Today’s dream was less impactful, more random and more ordinary. I was going to a music concert and had two tickets though I was alone. There was a rush to get to the stage when they opened the doors despite the fact that the seats were numbered. I was in the front row, number 27 and of course the seat next to me was vacant. I offered the girl who ushered me to my seat the open seat and she smiled and thanked me and said she had to get back to doing her job. The most noteworthy thing in the dream would probably be the ride I had to take in the elevator to get down to the concert floor level. the fact that it was insignificant in the dream was significant because riding in elevators in my dreams never, never has ended well before. They typically turn into nightmares, actually, so the fact that I got on and off and didn’t even remember that was part of the dream (at first) was interesting.

Anyway, my thoughts are scattered now, a triangulation between dreams and writing and reality. Reality being work and responsibility and the fact that it’s almost 10 and just like yesterday, I haven’t started work yet. Last week I used the holiday as an excuse of why I only worked 4 hours all week and this week I’ve barely worked that much and it’s already Friday. I’m running out of excuses. If I start now and work until 2, that will be 4 more hours, but that feels horrible. Ugh! Lots more to say on EVERYTHING.. alas I must stop here.

Clash, the Titans Whisper in their Dreams,

~Miss SugarCookie

2018-08-29 Elevator Nightmares

I would not say I necessarily have any re-occurring dreams or nightmares but I definitely have reoccurring themes within them. I could probably go on and on about dreams but it almost always seems like a silly thing to spend time writing about. I mean, the question of what it all means will never really be answered and it’s like a dream itself in that the thoughts about it are fleeting and quickly forgotten.

Every once in a while though I have one that’s so crystal clear that it lingers. Last night (or rather this morning), I had one just before I woke up and it had one of the classic elements that appears frequently in my dreams, which is the inclusion of an elevator. It’s always bad news.

This time I was going for a job interview in a building and the appointment was on the 5th or 6th floor. I made it up to the lobby of that floor just fine but realized a little too late that I had forgotten to put a new top on. That’s right – I was topmess. I’m sitting in the lobby waiting to be introduced to my interviewer holding my arm up to my chest so as not to expose my bare breasts. I was horrified but also apparently equally horrified by the proposition of going back to my car to get my top and being late for the appointment. What? Cuz being late is worse than being topless ??!!

So then the administrative assistant came out into the lobby with the dude I was meeting and he took a look at me and said “we’re done here”. I was mortified. After that I decided to go back to my car to finish getting dressed (thank goodness) and proceeded to think I could somehow explain my way out of the situation.

I went back in the building, now fully clothed, and got on the elevator with the intent of going to the 5th or 6th floor. I spent the rest of the Dream in that elevator. The doors would open and close, People got on with me off agaun, and I even had conversations with them but I never landed on the floor I wanted and never got out.

There was a floor with a gym, which was really cool. It was my gym too so if I were to get a job there, I could join those people every day. I thought about how great of an idea that was, to have a gym in the same building where you work. Another floor was a daycare. Then there were other floors with offices and I People who got on with whom I tried to explain my situation and reasoning I was going to use to explain to mr. Interviewer why I showed up half naked.

They all found the floors they were looking for without any trouble. Finally I was on floor 4 and going up and was sure the next stop was redemption. But the elevator just kept going up, up. The girl next to me said she was going to 22. “Great”, I said.

As we neared that floor the elevator started to sway and I realized for the first time that there was a window to the outside. I’d been in tall buildings before and had felt the sway of the building being up so high. She said “yeah, that happens up here”. Then it got worse.

The building was tipping and bending and I was stuck in the damn elevator staring out at other buildings were were about to collide with. Defying the laws of nature, the building recovered and started swaying back up again. She said, “you get used to that working here”. Then it started to sway back toward the ground and this time I could see the ground rising up and was sure the building was going to snap and I was going to die. That’s when I woke up.

I’ve had nightmares with elevators so often that now when I get on one for real, I’m always expecting something bad to happen. I’m gonna get stuck, or plummet to my death, or have to spend eternity riding up and down. That’s ridiculous but that’s how the brain works.

What does it mean?? Well, of course I don’t know but I felt compelled to write this down as evidence in case something ever DOES happen in the future. 😱

Laterz,

~Miss SugarCookie

2018-05-18 My Dreams are Stirring Up Some Shit

This morning I woke up at the tail end of a bad dream that was most certainly my brain trying to puzzle out something it’s grappled with a time or two in the past and potentially still struggling with. I have an inner desire to please People and do a good job and I think that’s ok, maybe even a great quality, but what it requires is a certain amount of external acknowledgement that’s not always given.

In my dream, I was having a perform e review and instead of being conducted by my boss, it was being administered by a PM at my last company… good ole Steve-O. He was relaying some pretty bad news. I’d been graded at a D. First off, that’s not how we were actually rated. Our marks were based on a flawed 4 point scale which was flawed because under the present dictator, a 4 was unobtainable. Before he took over, I regularly scored 4s in most categories and my composit score was about 3.75. The last couple years, though, under his rule my composit hovered right around 3. This was despite working harder than I ever had and pouring the amount of blood, sweat, and tears into each week that breaks a person. Yeah, there’s no denying that my situation there was a contributing factor to my overall declining health. But I digress.

Returning to the dream, I was arguing my case. I was asking for a second review by objective persons. I knew the numbers were skewed by my relationship with the president of the company. Now I knew Steve knew this to be true, but he wasn’t allowed to go against the Man.

I said that I always put 110% of myself into what was asked and challenged him to go do a survey of all my customers to see what marks they would give me. I could see in his eyes he knew I was right, and agreed to do that. This is the point in the dream where I woke up. I was upset.

I got up and wandered to the bathroom. I thought about why I might have that dream now. I’m coming up on the anniversary of the day I quit that job last year. I know I’m not happy about my final performance review there. They did downgrade me in several areas and I’m convinced it’s because 1.) They did not want to Give me a decent raise and 2). They were trying to push me out the door.

Shit went down there late the year before with another employee and I was periferally involved because he was on my team. I was vocal about the President of the company behind the closed doors of HR but I have no doubt my statement was made available to the entire executive team. I was probably tagged as a liability. /shrug

Anyway, I know I always did the best I could so I’m looking for other reasons for this dream now. I don’t get much recognition from my current gig. The team gets a lot of props for hitting milestones and being awesome, but not a lot individually. I think I’m the kind of person that needs that individual validation. It is what it is.

I’ve also been kind of wondering lately if they think I’m doing a good job. It’s not the kind of gig that does employee performance evaluations or 1 on 1s with the “boss”. I might just ask him. Sometime soon perhaps.

Here’s the other late breaking news, which may or may not play into inspiration for my dream… yesterday I saw my elderly neighbor across the street struggling to push an old non-motorized mower through her 12+ inch grass and weeds. JS has one of these mowers and I know it’s tough to use if the grass gets too long. This looked damn near impossible, especially for her. She can barely walk. My heart hurt watching her. I offered to help.

I walked across the street and told her I’d mow after I was done working at 2, which I did. It took me an hour to do the front and side yards which were a bitch. Still, it was gratifying to look back as I walked away to see the job done. After that I saw her back out working on spots that popped up again after I was done. When it gets that long, the mower pushes the grass down flat and sometimes the blade goes right over the top and doesn’t make a cut.

I went back over and told her we could come cut it again this weekend to take care of that and my son might be interested in a regular paid gig. She seemed interested. But here’s the rub.. she didn’t even say thank you. When I came out the first time she broke down crying and saying she didn’t know what she was going to do. “No family in town and her husband is ill”.

Once the deed was done she didn’t even seem grateful. She was only interested in getting more help. I told her I’d bring my kids over and we’d chat more about it. Later I did that and she showed me and C the back yard which was a total wreck. A person could not even mow back there until all the debris was picked up. I wanted to grab C and run away and not look back.

All that may or may not play into my bad dream but it seems likely. Doing work, not being recognized for it (or thanked), and then having someone just want more. /shrug /shrug

So this is how smart, logical people approach the current situation with the neighbor… we write out an estimate so she has a paper to reference what the offer is and we include a price for first time yard prep. We crank it up just a touch so that it’s worth our while and perhaps that will give her pause and cause her to seek other estimates.

I’m also going to say it’s X amount for the re-mow this weekend and that will be a good test to see if she’s actually going to pay. If she doesn’t, then we know the deal is sour. I can feel good about yesterday’s good deed and have a clear conscience if that’s all we ever do.

Yesterday I said I was immune to the shit that happens in life, so now I have to live my word and not just type /shrug, but really mean it. “I will not become a bitch.. I will not become a bitch.. I will not become a bitch.” 😜

On that note.. I’ve got lots to do on this fantastic Friday. Time to jet!

/Shrugging it all off,

~Miss SugarCookie

2018-04-26 Up Before the Sun.. Twice

Sometimes the Universe has an ironic sense of humor and sometimes it’s just a supreme asshole. For real.

Last night I woke when it was still dark. Looking down at my Fitbit (to check the time) all I could see was that the battery had been exhausted and a charge was in order. I took it off and put it on the charger. Then Iooked at my phone and it was 3 something. Ugh.

I woke because I was having a bad dream. Not a nightmare by any stretch of the imagination but bad enough. I was dress shopping (oh the horror 😱) and I couldn’t find what I was looking for. I was in a mall and going from store to store and what I wanted to find was something semi-formal for a special occasion. The racks were practically bare.

I recall thinking that if I didn’t find something I could always wear one of those cocktail length brides maids dresses I already have. Yeah, even in my sleep the logical brain is hard at work. There was only a few dresses I remember seeing that I halfway considered before dismissing. Two more casual numbers reminiscent of “pretty in pink”, probably because they were pink. Yuk.

If you knew me, you might now that I love dresses but I hate shopping. I mean, I really hate shopping. I’ll avoid shopping for clothes at almost any cost. If I can’t pick something up at Target with a quickness, then forget about it. And malls… gross.

I won’t even shop for dresses even though I really like to wear dresses. For one thing, I don’t need anymore dresses and for another, I don’t have a lot of occasions to spur some need for a new one. So this dream.. bad news man.

Awake at 3, I check my email and opened something from Josh about weight loss and hormones. It was a link to a YouTube video, a six minute clip from a joe Rogan podcast. I watched that and it was enough to wet my appetite for more info but I had no desire to search for more just then.

Instead I picked one of the next things in the suggested YouTube list, a Ted talk about how to live a happier life with a more uncluttered mind. The speakers secret? Not giving a fuck. Really. That was her whole talk.. a lesson about how not to give a fuck. And how to politely say no when you don’t want to spend your time or money or energy on something.

I’m all like “no shit”. I could’ve given that talk, especially since I’ve been self taught (even if it seems like I’m not so good at times remembering what I learned on my time off last year). ReLly I think she was just looking for an excuse to say the word “fuck” a lot in front of an audience. I couldn’t finish the vid and moved on to something more interesting. A Ted talk about sex.

(Which makes me wonder what the algorithm is for showing you suggested videos). I mean seriously.. why were those the top suggestions after the Joe Rogan fat thing? Hmmmm. 🤔

The “sex talk” also didn’t tell me anything I don’t already know. I could see sinking hours into interesting videos on the Tubes, but my attention span can’t handle wading though stuff I don’t find valuable or interesting. So I was done. I went back to sleep and that was a success (for a while anyway).

Enter stage left bad dream number 2. This time I’m going to some conference with some co-workers at a remote location. It started in the hotel room with my trying to get ready to go but not finding the things (mainly clothes) I was looking for. Sounds familiar right?!

Fast forward to me with two other people getting out of an elevator and since I don’t know where to go so I follow them. We get to the first little alcove/booth and these people I was following weren’t there. Poof! So there I was at some big convention center with hallways and rooms and audutoriums with no clue where I was supposed to be. And the clock was ticking.

Breakfast buffet from 8 to 8:30 and then the first speaker promptly at 8:30 and attendance is mandatory. It was 8:15 and all could think about was that I was going to miss the opportunity for food (priorities). Ask me how I knew it was 8:15 and I’ll tell you I swear I saw it on the Fitbit on my wrist.

Someone once told me you can’t read words or numbers in a dream. I’ve never been able to confirm or deny this claim, but I suspect it isn’t true. “Horseshit” I say.

That’s me employing profanity to garner continued interest like that lady who said fuck a lot in that Ted talk. Ha!

Anyway, when that dream finally woke me up I was over and done trying to sleep with all this havoc wrecking my dreams. It was 6am and the sun wasn’t up yet. I got up and got dressed and went to Wal-Mart to pick up a few household things I’d been putting off getting in the daylight. Wal-Mart is actually not that bad at 6am.

Now I’m just finishing up my morning cardio and I’m already fucking tired (and hungry). Damn.

Thanks Universe,

~Miss SugarCookie

2018-03-13 Fire 🔥 and Ice ❄️

I said upfront that it is what it is. Organic is a nice way to say unprocessed and unfiltered. That means that sometimes you get unfiltered awesomeness and sometimes it’s just rotten. Today I have a rant about my ex (husband) and if I remember before I’m done writing, I also want to contemplate a dream I had and what it might mean.

First, the ex. This guy! Flame 🔥 on!!

This guy who never cared about being a partner in parenting when our kids were small. This guy who was so career driven “for us” but found time to go out and drink and screw around when he was in town, yet didn’t have time to change a lightbulb or drive his kids to swim class.

This guy who was perpetually stuck in his 20s and wanted what he wanted and didn’t care until well after our divorce.

Having 30% responsibility for the kids when we separated was eye opening to him. He slowly realized how difficult things can be and also what rewards were also possible. Now he cherishes his children and they are his world, but that took a long time.

I remember the first time he texted that he was up all night with Z who was sick. I was all like “how is she now?” (And welcome to the real world, no shit it’s hard).

I went through years getting letters from the school about how my children were habitually tardy and he always said that it wasn’t him. He was always the master of convincing himself he was never to blame. I’m the data nerd, so I had the calendar with the schedule and crosschecked that with the detail reports I requested from the school. Surprise surprise, the kids were late on his mornings. I knew that already because I was rarely late.

Then we went through a phase where his vehicle wouldn’t start in the mornings. Despite it being at least 8 years newer than mine AND the same kind of car (Ford Escape), he would text and say “my car won’t start, can you take the kids?”. What was I supposed to do, say no?

He always made excuses.. and each time that was a reminder to me why were not married anymore. Over time (8 years this week actually), he’s gotten better, and now he has a job again and a girlfriend and takes more responsibility for things.

Every once in a while, though, I still get those reminders. This week Is his daughter’s Sweet 16 party which is a big deal to her, and I’m taking care of ALL of it, including hosting at my house and paying for everything. The only thing I physically can’t do is get 8 people to the escape room event and back. I asked for his help with carpool over two weeks ago and then confirmed again last week.

Then yesterday Z and I were picking something up at his house I’m the middle of the day, and he saunters out in his pajamas and comes up to my car window to say hi.

“I took the day off because I hate my job” he says. I conceal my eye roll by briefly looking down and then just smile and nod. I proceed to confirm the carpool again (because this is necessary) and I’m glad I did because he proceeds to tell me he can’t because he has a job interview IN DENVER. WTF??!

I’m really low on good alternatives. I’m not friends with the other parents and it’s short notice to take Work off early anyway. My sister is out of town and my other sister doesn’t have a car and I’ve got no friends close to this area of town. My parents aren’t close enough for it to be reasonable, but that’s my next best option.

He asked about Uber and I replied, “sure, I’m sure my dumping 3 teenage girls in a car with a complete stranger is going to go over really well… no!”.

This morning I requested he ask his girlfriend to help. She’s lived with him un officially for a while now and officially for the past several months. I think it’s not a stretch to ask. I forced his hand on it and she said yes, so now it’s all worked out. I’m still left feeling a little “WTF” though. Seriously.

There is so much more I could rant about, but perhaps that’s enough for now. I gotta turn down that flame so I can get to more important things, like how I almost died in a dream. It left me with icy chills. ❄️ I say “Almost” because when it happened, I woke up instantly!!

This was the night before last but you don’t experience something like that and forget it easily. I was with a few people at an event and the only one I remember was my step sister, Julie. We were looking up watching some event on tvs. There were multiple side by side screens like they have at the gym or at a sports bar mounted above where we were standing.

The screen on the right was showing some party outdoors with mountains covered in snow on the background. I had interest in this because I had family there too, or so I felt in my dream. It was too small to know for certain but I just felt it.

The scene didn’t last long. All at once you could see in the distance on the TV that there was an avalanche of snow coming down the mountain. At first it was small, and then in an instant it became massive and a spit second later, it overtook that party and I barely had time to consider the fact that my family was all crushed under that snow before a giant white mass came down upon us and where we were. Another instant later I woke with the fear of death in me. I was at that event and buried under an avalanche of snow and debris. I was terrified and it truly took me a few seconds to recognize it was a dream and I was fine. I didn’t really go back to sleep after that.

Like I said, that was yesterday but it’s still lingering in my brain. It happened so fast and what I just described is all I remember. I wonder what that could all mean?

No matter, time to get back to reality now and the party happening in a few hours here in Sunny Nebraska where there are no snow filled mountains! 😉

Flame 🔥 Off,

~Miss SugarCookie