Have you ever had a nightmare that was so horrific that it made you question your own psyche? How could your brain even imagine something so horrible?
I woke up shaking this morning because of just such a dream.
Now no matter what I try to write about, or talk about I can't get it out of my mind.
Some nameless, faceless people were tormenting me by torturing and killing people I love. And they were concocting situations out of some horrific reality show where I would be responsible for how my loved-ones would be tortured or killed.
The one thing I knew for sure was that there was no way out.
When the dream woke me this morning, I could remember every detail. Now, all these hours later, I can only remember the worst parts.
Near the end, a friend was hanging so that his weight was supported by the top of a freight elevator. Every few minutes the elevator would rise up and then drop. My friend would fall only to be stopped by a rope tied around his chest that would stop him from crashing to his death, but would break his ribs.
The elevator would rise again and the whole tortuous process would repeat itself over and over and over again and the rope would get weaker every time.
When I finally found my way to where this friend was, I was elated that it was not who I thought it would be. They may have gotten a friend of mine, but he wasn't someone I loved and couldn't live without. So I set to work with the other people there trying to save him, but the entire time I kept repeating in my head, "Oh, thank god. Oh, thank god. Oh, thank god."
We somehow knew that the only way to save him was to replace his exact weight on the top of the elevator before it fell again.
Another female friend of mine grabbed some heavy debris and jumped on the elevator, simultaneously pushing the man off. We all stood there in horror waiting to see if she had miraculously gotten the weight exactly right.
Just as we were expecting the elevator to rise again, I got this gut feeling that she was nowhere near heavy enough. I spied some crumbling bricks in a corner and threw them on with her just as the elevator rose up to start its plunge.
It wasn't enough. Not only would she fall to her death, but the elevator shaft would explode to punish us for our insolence in trying to mess with "fate".
She jumped off, but sat in shock. I screamed to her and to everyone to run for their lives, but nobody moved. Except me. I ran away from a group of my friends knowing that every one of them would burn, or fall, or be crushed to death.
As I ran I saw the very person I had expected to be on top of the elevator being pulled and pushed at gunpoint to the center of a room.
And I knew. This was the whole purpose. To make me feel so guilty that I was glad he wasn't on the freight elevator, only to torture and kill him right before my very eyes.
Even though I knew I was running toward him to see him die horrifically--and probably be captured, tortured, and killed myself--I couldn't help it. I had to tell him I loved him before he died.
So I ran. And screamed. But I didn't have enough breath and the words came out as just a squeak. "I love you. I love you. I love you." But he couldn't hear me. He was suffering.
And I knew he would die because I loved him. And he wouldn't even know it.
That's when I woke up. It was like my psyche just couldn't handle conjuring up the exact way he would die.
I've been carrying around the guilt and regret all day long, like it was all real. And I should warn my friends right now. If I melt into a sappy puddle of affection out of nowhere, this is why. I don't want anyone to die without them knowing how I feel.