Thursday, February 28, 2008

In Which Amazing Cheastypants Learns to Fly. Sort of.

I've always been secretly jealous of people who have flying dreams on a regular basis. I almost never fly in my sleep. Once when I was eleven I rode a pink flying elephant about an island peopled with strange creatures, and once or twice in college I woke up feeling triumphant, having soared above the ground in dreams I no longer remember. But it's never been a regular feature of my dreamscape, active and cluttered though it may be. It seems to me that people who do fly frequently might have some inner strength that eludes me, or a deep well of self-confidence that propelled them to majestic feats in their subconscious lives. I covet the experience; after all, I've read dream books. I know what they say. And, by extension, I understand what that means about me, in that not having those dreams is in some way an admission of a character riven by fear and insecurity. And I just don't feel like that's true about me, no more so than any other relatively normal, healthy, well-loved, well-adjusted, incredibly gorgeous and unspeakably talented young woman of our times.

Well, guess what, dream dictionaries. Lately, I've been flying my amazing cheastypants off. It's pretty weird, actually, because now is not a logical time for my dream life to take flight. Don't get me wrong. I'm happy, I love my life, I love the town I live in, I even love my work, no matter how herculean the task in front of me seems. But I'm about as stressed out as it's possible for me to be, I'm not in love, I haven't achieved any great and long-standing goal. In other words, I haven't done anything that might produce a subconscious catharsis grand enough to catapult me into the sky. And yet, I'm flying.

Upon further consideration, perhaps I should clarify something. I am not actually flying myself. In my dreams, I'm mastering the art of harnessing the flight capacity of objects around me. The other night my Dad taught me how to fly some weird proto-helicopter machine made from aluminum. It was super light and fast. I had to fly into a war zone and rescue my brother (Fairy King, not Bug) from fighting in an unjust war. (This is funny on a number of levels, primarily because if you knew the Fairy King, you'd know that there is NO WAY IN HELL he'd be fighting in any war, just or unjust. Although he could probably paralyze an enemy combatant with a contemptuous glance, at base, he's a lover, not a fighter. War just ain't his thing. It was also funny because in my dream he didn't insist that I let him fly the proto-copter. Very out of character.) Then two nights ago, I learned how to take a towel or garbage bag or whatever was around and harness the power of the wind. It was like kite surfing, but on the ground. I flew like Spidey, in huge airborne leaps and bounds. Wow. Just remembering it gave me chill bumps cause it was so awesome. There have been a few other isolated incidents of night flying, but I can't actually remember the dreams anymore.

It turns out I was right to be jealous of people who flew in their sleep for all those years, just not for the reasons I thought were true. I no longer think that flying in your sleep necessarily indicates a zen-like peace with the world, or a wealth of self-confidence, though that also may be true. But this is what I know about me, about flying, about right now.

I'm just having more fun when I sleep.


Alison said...

Congrats on entering the world of flying! Sounds exciting - I like these machines you're using too. Usually if I fly in a dream it's kind of in leaps and bounds -- in that sense that I can jump and sort of float for long stretches but then I will eventually come down and have to bounce up again...

Paul said...

I'm not so sure you're missing out on anything special. My flying dreams always go the exact same way.. it's great for a few moments until i become aware of how great it feels to be flying, then I go slower and slower and have no control over it. Eventually it winds down to where I have to concentrate really hard to get higher than an average jump off the ground and even then I can only maintain it for a few seconds. Highly(no pun intended) anxiety provoking.

Although sometimes my flying dreams are more of long/high jumping dreams. I start out only jumping an abnormal distance, like more than a few sidewalk squares when I'm just sort of trotting. Then across the street. then a few hundred feet across a park or down the road. Eventually i'm jumping so high the heights scare the shit out of me. Think of the recent Hulk movie where he jumps up hundreds of feet and covers miles at a time.

I guess the common theme is being out of control. Weird.

Anyway, i'm not so sure you are missing out on anything;)