Quiet Dreams: But Why Nightmares?

“IN GOD WE TRUST, IN GUIDE WE TRUST”, Graffiti in Mammoth Cave National Park, pre-park.

Why am I focused on nightmares? The Nightmare Plague is my primary fiction series, focusing on teddy bears fighting unnatural nightmares. They cannot end regular nightmares, only ease the impact on the individual. I rarely have nightmares, at least that I am aware of. Every few years, though, major events visit my sleep and leave me shaken for days. The last time, though, there were two, both disturbing enough that I violently threw myself out of bed and narrowly escaped serious injury both times.

Nightmares, even violent ones mentioned above, are a normal part of existence. But, what if they weren’t? What if a plague of induced nightmares began to sweep across the world? The teddy bears can only do so much, yet they are not alone in the struggle. These others will appear as the stories develop and extraneous to this post.

Part of my original research range from the expected, such as falling, to surprising in the form of teeth falling out. Both of these are significant in the list of most common nightmares reported. I found it curious that nothing on these lists came close to those I can recall throughout my life. As an example, the nightmare of 2015 or 2016, I was trapped in the responsibility to save someone’s life. I was stalking a murderer to stop their intended action while armed with a knife. The police were racing to take over, but I was certain there wasn’t enough time remaining. The nightmare didn’t focus on personal fear, but more towards the anxiety of failure. I was disturbed for days afterwards.

River Hall, a commonly visited area of Mammoth Cave. This image shows it flooded in 2010 when the Green River greatly exceeded it’s normal levels. The depth in the foreground is only one or two feet, but tens of feet in the background.

One of the most recent nightmares involved an immediate risk of drowning, hence I threw myself from the bed as I was throwing myself from a car being deliberately sunk by the driver. Deep water is one of my greatest fears. You better be real convincing, pretty, or both to get me on a boat. Complete nope. So, Nightmares of failing others and drowning, so what was the third? It was also failure, but this time my family. Several men I had successfully fought off earlier, reappeared and armed with firearms’. A table full of my loved ones were between us and they began to grin, knowing I couldn’t stop all of them in time. Regardless, I leapt across the table to attack and die for people I love, leading me to throw myself from the bed. Both times I did this, the point of impact was four feet away.

I want to protect people, but cannot. I want to shelter from harm, whether physical or emotional, but I cannot. Instead, I will send teddy bears.

2 thoughts on “Quiet Dreams: But Why Nightmares?

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  1. I’ve had some doozy nightmares. Unfortunately I remember a lot of them. Everything from alien invasion to my Dad trying to kill me. Some not entirely identifiable. I’ve woken up crying, and I’ve woke up yelling and cursing. (I could go on and on about dreams and nightmares.) But I don’t think I’ve ever threw myself out of bed. Glad you didn’t get seriously injured. Hope you don’t have any more of those.
    I think that part of the reason why I love your stories about teddy bears fighting nightmare causing demons. Makes you think, maybe I’m not fighting alone.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I was just sore, but could have easily broken a bone from the force of impact. That second paragraph is the second reason for the stories. The initial reason fell to the wayside after the first few stories and are allegories of the effects mental health disorders have on people. Voices Within illustrates events that happened to a particular individual.

      Liked by 1 person

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