“Dreams are the residues of our conscious thought” my psychiatrist said. Nightmare is the manifestation of our worst fears, our anxiety and depression. My nightmare involves eternal suffering, where I cannot die to escape all the misery of my nightmare. I was stabbed in my dream, shot, and tortured but in the end I always reborn anew to suffer again and again. The manifestation of the childhood fear of hell or the adult fear of constant suffering, it was in death that I hope my pain would end. But ‘death’ may not end in a perpetual rest, instead we may be reincarnated or sent to purgatory to repent for our previous sins. I had a dream where I died but in ‘death’ I see a silent world without life, where I am living there alone trapped there for eternity, I still suffer from my own existence. My existence is still a dilemma, my childhood tells me that there is a world in the afterlife that all my desire in life will be satisfied in the afterlife in a heavenly kingdom, my recent faith tells me that true afterlife is the cessation of desire, and quite possibly the end of existence and consciousness as well. In both case, the question of desire is answered, by reveling in desire or to be liberated from it, in both I can find peace, in enjoying infinite number of pleasure or to be liberated from it completely. But the afterlife has its rule, it has purgatory or reincarnation, where I must endure possibly an eternity of suffering over and over again until the ultimate liberation liberates me from cycle of pain.
My other nightmare is to be attached in the past. Feeling that something in the past prevented me from feeling full and satisfied of my present. A nightmare where I was reminded of close call in the past, and that I may only be lucky to pass, the manifestation of my impostor syndrome. The thought that my present is far from an optimum streak of decisions and how a single action might have reversed my misery.
My nightmare involves the manipulation of time, where I could reverse time and create a reality that is better than the one I live in. A perfect world, but a fleeting daydream, a reality that was soon destroyed as I was awaken. Where I am united with my loved one only to be awaken to my miserable present life where there is no reset button to reverse time, with all my flaws and misery.
The past reminded me of my former self, a youthful and energetic young man. Passionate about his life and confident, things that have since disappeared from me. The past reminded me of a strong young man who can endure physical test and how I would have lived a better life if I had made the right decision. The present remind me how far away that reality were from my present, how entropy prevented such thing to happen again that I must now life as a weak, broken man in a perpetual nightmare.
When I am awake, I want to sleep to escape pain. It has become an addiction, a drug I cannot quit. It is the closest thing to a penultimate death, the perpetual rest where I can escape from my crippling depression, a cope. But no amount of rest has amounted to clarity, I am still burnt out and stressed out but instead sleep has become my second post-quarantine reality with its own rules, a substitute of the former social life and physical interaction which is near to impossible in the current situation. When I wake up it is still the same nightmare over and over again, it just won’t stop.