Monday, April 17, 2006

Flash Dreams.

Dream 1: Two children are assembling a swing set, specifically the slide.

Dream 2: Yesterday, in realspace, I rode on the Ghost Town Trail in Indiana County. There was one place where there were some odd concentric semi-circular mounds beside what used to be the rail line. I couldn't quite tell what they were for, but in my dreamscape I saw a track junction and rail laid along these mounds as I rode by.

Dream 3: A red business-sized card has little mechanical feet, like those wind-up toys, and is walking along a asphalt sidewalk. There is some sort of writing on the card that I can't read. Two blue cards walk out of the grass to the right and advance menacingly on the red card.

Dream 4: I'm hiking on a trail that looks like one in south park and there's a side trail that I know will take me down to an intersection and then back to the parking area. Instead of taking that trail, I continue up further up to a different trail intersection that looks more like the Whitetail Trail near Uniontown.

What is disturbing about these dreams is not their content but that I was able to have them in-between calls sitting in my cube at the Help Desk. Normally, I don't go to sleep easily and it's not unusual for me to lay in bed for an hour before drifting off. But I have discovered that in the morning I can cross my arms, close my eyes and fall into a dream state yet still be alert enough that I can answer an incoming call before the second ring.

I think there are several things going on here. The first is simple sleep deprivation. Four or five hours of sleep is the norm for me during the week.

Second, is the lack of anything to get my brain actually working in the morning. Calls are mostly passwords and mail servers being down so it's easy to be done with a call and drop off without having to think much about it.

And thirdly, I think my mind might just be wired that way. When I'm not getting enough sleep, I've hallucinated. Usually it's when I'm trying to sleep or just waking up I'll be in the space where I'm awake enough to see my bed room but asleep enough to see the aliens or demons from my dreams superimposed. I haven't been having that happen to me recently but this may be something similar.

I read a recent article that people who have had near-death experiences also experienced REM Intrusion, the overlaying of rapid eye movement sleep and brain wave patters over waking consciousness. Well, my dreams aren't intruding into my wakefulness but the time between my being awake and dreaming is greatly reduced. In most people, going from being awake to REM sleep, where most dreaming happens, takes 90 minutes. I'm apparently , under the right conditions, able to be dreaming in only a few minutes.

A little more investigation into the issue have shows that some dreaming does take place during other stages of the sleep cycle (they call this "covert REM sleep"). So, I'm not experiencing REM Intrusion but dreaming between phone calls is still not normal.

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