I'm not scared of spiders, the dark, or heights. I have an odd revulsion to the feel of a toothbrush against another person's teeth (Douglas is the official brusher of Carly's teeth.) And toenail clippers make me shiver. Other than that, all my fears can be summed up into Things That Don't Exist But That I Will Dream About Almost Every Night.
1. Bridges made out of one long steel beam.
When this dream starts, my dream self tells my sleeping self, "Oh great, here goes the bridge dream again..." But that doesn't make it any less horrifying. There are several variations of this- Bridges that are a steep decline, like a sheer drop onto a six-inch-wide stick or rope. At that point, to cross the very dirty raging river, I have to get out of the car and get across however I can. Usually this is on my tummy, and there's a windstorm.
My palms are sweating just typing it.
The strange thing is, I'm not afraid of bridges at all. I've carefully planned out what I would do in the event that a bridge actually broke while I am crossing. I'd unbuckle my seat belt, roll down the front two windows, unbuckle my kid, and swim to safety. I'm so not scared in fact, that I dare a bridge to break while I'm on it.
2. Tyrannosaurus Rex.
I'm pretty sure this has something to do with my favorite movie, Jurassic Park. In the T-Rex dream, my childhood neighbors are being attacked. I go over there to help them and make sure they don't move, because as everyone but my neighbors knows, T-Rex can't see you if you don't move. But someone always moves, and so we have to run to the next house as T-Rex stomps the former house into smithereens.
The weird thing is that I'm not really scared of T-Rex, I'm really scared of velociraptors. They're the smart ones that can open doors and work in packs. That's why I'm always careful to sleep with my feet and hands tucked safely under the blankets. I know there are no velociraptors under my bed, but... Still. It seems like a good practice.
It's becoming apparent that I watch way too much TV.
The aliens in my nightmares are a species made up of the things from War of the Worlds, Xenomorphs, and the things from Independence Day.
These dreams are always in a futuristic version of a random neighborhood I've lived in. They usually come in through the windows. Because, you know, they've got those sky-scraper legs and tentacle-y arms and attacking protruding tongues.
4. Working at the drive-through window.
I used to be a restaurant manager, and we had an insane goal of serving each customer through the drive through in less than 25 seconds. Actually, 25 seconds would be considered heinously slow. You're just a failure if you do it in any less than 18.
So in this nightmare, I'm always staffed with 16-year-olds. And it's their first day. And the corporate president is visiting. And I get a phone order: In 10 minutes, someone very important will be coming to pick up 500 gluten-free bagels (no such thing) and a cement mixer truck-full of caviar goats milk cream cheese. (What is that, I don't even know.)
5. Cannibal Pirates.
The last time I had this dream, I was babysitting dozens of small children. (In the dream. I would never do that.) And cannibal pirates ate most of them while I ran away to save myself. And then they captured me and made me eat a human hand. It was like the inside of a kiwi, but crispy. But I ate it, to make them think I was cool with that and I wouldn't escape. And then the pirates leave the most doofus-ish pirate in charge of the prisoners, and I have to slit his throat to escape. So I somehow get my sword (I don't have a sword.) and try to slice his throat, but I really don't want to, because that's wrong. But I have to. But I only nick him. So then I have to stab his stomach, and his intestines come out. And... then I run away.
Yes, it's obvious. I watch too much TV. If I watch a movie or show about, say, a serial killer stalker, I'm fine. If I watch a movie about things that don't exist- Dinosaurs, aliens, underground tremors trying to eat Kevin Bacon, I totally freak out.
Remember that movie with Will Smith, and the whole world got a virus that turned them into albino zombies? I've never seen it, but it was on TV and Douglas was watching it. I came in at the part where Will Smith is trying to coax his dog out of the bank and the zombies show up and start chasing him with their super-human running powers, and I screamed bloody murder and burst into tears.
This morning I was in the shower, thinking about the albino zombies, (Because that's where I do my best thinking) and I turned my face into the water. Behind me, I heard a loud bang. I screamed and screamed and screamed.
It was the bar of soap. Behind me, the bar of soap had fallen off the soap holder and crashed on the bottom of the bathtub.
Douglas came running in to see what was wrong. I had to explain how I had mistaken the bar of soap for an albino zombie in the bathtub. Not one of my finer moments.
He laughed and closed the door. I took the rest of my shower with the curtain open so I could keep an eye on the bathroom.
I'll probably have terrible nightmares tonight.