Avoiding The Unreal

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This morning, another dream about my ex. As ever, the dream seemed more real than my “real” life, the colours more vivid, the sounds crystal and perfect. But the major difference to my waking existence is the deep feeling of being loved and understood that the dream made me remember.

I say made because part of the process of splitting with my ex was a self-lobotomy that I carried out with a toffee hammer and a shard of ice from the freezer. Once I’d tapped in far enough, the memories that I couldn’t bear were erased and I did my best to fill in the resulting gaps with banalities and levels from Goldeneye 64.

For a while, I didn’t dream of her. My brain, atypically cutting me some fucking slack, instead took me to Rokakku Dai Heights where I was tagging and avoiding vicious coppers. Or I was in a temple, running down an alcove to where I knew body armour would be secreted.

But lately, my brain has been betraying me. As the fifth anniversary of the end of my world approaches, it chooses to fill my dreams with her. The way she talked, smiled, smelled, kissed me, loved me.

(This all sounds very morbid and Inception-ish. She isn’t dead, she’s alive and well and very happy with her new girlfriend, from what her mother tells me.)

The other day, I woke crying because I’d dreamt of a bag she used to have. How ridiculous is that? In my “real” life, I’d completely forgotten about this bag. It was just a bag, why would I remember it? But in the dream, we were getting ready to go somewhere and she called out for me to fetch it. So I did and it was exactly as it was, every detail down to the muted colours of the hippyish front and the feel of the string ties slipping through my fingers.

I can protect yourself against the big things: finding a photo of her in the corner of a drawer, a hairpin wedged into the recessed track of a sliding door. The bag, I wasn’t prepared for and it was a fist to the gut. So I woke, cried and then tried to go back to sleep. My brain, probably feeling guilty at how much it had upset me, tried to give me a dream about a threesome with two very pretty girls but that fizzled rapidly and I woke again, exhausted and confused.

After Halloween passes, I should be okay. All the pieces of my fractured life will be jammed back into the unconvincing jigsaw I’ve constructed for the past five years, edges snarling against one another. I’ll write some more songs about her, maybe a bad poem or two.

The dreams will stop so my days will stop being nightmares.