Growing up I never had recurring dreams, but since moving to China I’ve begun to regularly dream of three different things: Floating on air currents and jumping around the city, zombies, and being back in America.
Now the first one, floating on the wind, is pretty cool. In the dream I run and leap into the air just as a gust of wind comes along and can ride it like you ride a wave at the beach. It carries me up and through the air in a big arc and I land softly back on the ground. I can leap and bound across large distances quite easily, and when I’m in the air I throw my arms out and just enjoy the lift. Actually, it’s a little like how the Hulk gets around, except when he just jumps it’s his crazy thigh muscles that propel him half a mile away not the wind. The dream is fun. I wake up feeling good and light-hearted. I’ve had this dream a handful of times; more than five or six time, for sure.
Zombies could very well be attributed to my love of The Walking Dead and the fact that I live in a country of more than a billion, and no one owns a firearm. So basically, if the zombie apocalypse breaks out my best bet is to pull a Michonne and find a sword because just pulling a shotgun from a hillbilly’s pick-up or a pistol from a regular home isn’t going to happen.
My most recent zombie dream had me…and, yes, a few of the folks from TWD holing up in a house that looked suspiciously like my father’s house, except it was in a rural area. Anyway, we get in, make a perimeter, and settle in for the night. Four or five choose to pull out tents and set them up in the back yard (I don’t know why. Such a stupid idea, right? Maybe it was my mind pulling from season one). It’s night and I’m patrolling around the area when I notice someone’s left a light on and because of the position of the house, it can be seen from a long ways off. Sure enough, even though I douse it a horde comes along and all hell breaks loose.
Some other notable zombie dreams include me in a house while I fight off a few zombies with shovel, having to kill two zombie children after they crawl through a doggy door in a house and I can’t get away from them (I could even feel the vibration of the pipe in my hand as I struck their heads), and last week I held my dying brother just after he got bit by one of the undead (that was an emotional dream).
Arguably, even more distressing than zombies is the third recurring dream: being back in America before I want to be. These dreams take on different specifics as well, but at some point in all of them someone in the dream world finds out I’ve been in China and begins asking me stuff about it (the language, holiday info, culture, etc.). Now usually right before they ask me I’m already thinking something like, “I should be getting back there soon,” or “How can I get back?” or even about the people I’ve left behind.
The thoughts always bum me out in the dream and when I do answer their questions I find myself increasingly depressed that it seems like my American life is overrunning me and any chance I’ll have of getting back to the Middle Kingdom. Oddly enough, I’m always back in a school in these dreams. In some I’m a new teacher starting the school year in my hometown and in others I’m either a HS student or a college student again. Always one or the other.
At first I thought maybe it was just my subconscious making it obvious that I don’t want to leave yet, but now that I think about the dreams it’s not so much leaving China as it is being STUCK in the USA. A lot of what got me here was this restless spirit, the discontent with the norm of “back home.” Someone once said that I’m just, “a wanderer,” and I think she was right. And the worst thing for a wanderer is to be stagnant, unable to move about. For some reason I get that feeling at times when I think about going back home, that a level of freedom will be stripped away. It’ absurd, I’m sure, but it’s there anyway.
These are the three dreams that I have most often. It’s not uncommon for me to dream about random stuff on Monday, flying on the wind on Tue, and then on Thur or Fri battle zombies, and end the week stressing over how I can get a ticket and visa back to China. Imagine that on-loop. It’s weird, man. Okay, there are some reprieves between the dreams, random dreamy stuff that is also vibrant and vivid as well as some dull ones that I don’t remember, but these three pop up quite a bit.
I’ll write about my week-long trip to Xi’an and parts of the Henan Province soon!
Anyone want to psych analyze me?