When I was at my lowest point I was having significantly disturbing nightmares, but one stands out from the rest and will continue to haunt me. Dreams or nightmares of this calibre shows unequivocally how much of an effect mental health illnesses can have on the physiology of any human. This dream consisted of myself and my daughter drudging through a soaked soil field in the engulfing darkness, both grasping each other’s hands tightly as if we knew that something horrifying was about to occur. Tired and scared we stopped in our tracks as we were hit with blinding lights from the distance, I could see figures moving swiftly towards us but their faces were in a state of flux, blurry and indistinguishable. A barrage of bullets and arrows were fired in our direction so I turned my back to the first volley would hit me, protecting my daughter at all costs, I could feel the pain but it wasn’t because of being fired upon it was seeing my beautiful vulnerable little girl terrified and inconsolable, our tear-soaked faces would be the last thing we saw, but that itself for me was a relief, what better way is there to leave this earth, seeing the person I love the most one last time. After the second volley I dropped to my knees and held my daughter tightly, saying don’t be scared I’m here, daddy won’t leave and I love you always. At that point, I awoke and ran through to my daughter for the longest cuddle imaginable.
To this very day, I think about that nightmare, asking myself was that punishment for my past, a guilt trip from my subconscious or something I ate during that day. Regardless of what the reason behind it was, guilt was a large part of it in my opinion and an unhealthy reminder of my illness. It’s unfair the only dreams I remember are actually nightmares, the minds unwavering attempt at humour. These night terrors disrupt normal REM sleep and in doing so fuels the issue, lack of sleep weighs up and takes it’s toll on everybody, not just the 1 in 4 individuals who do have a variant of mental issues. Again it’s the triggers to look out for to try to cope with these intolerable dreams, even amending a detail in your daily routine no matter how minute, could transform a potential nightmare into a standard uneventful dream.
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