Do you ever feel like you’re chasing dreams or need to be? I don’t mean your real life dreams like becoming a doctor, a famous actor, or winning the lottery, I mean your sleepy dreams. It’s a safe bet, I think, to say that most people don’t remember most of their dreams. Lots of dreams can become very strange very quickly. One second you’re sitting on a beach with your best friend and the next thing you know dinosaurs are jumping out of the sand and you run away screaming with Elmo and the Cookie Monster. If you’re like me though, there are some dreams that you never want to forget. Some dreams can feel like reality even when we all know they’re not real. On occasion, I have very powerful and vivid dreams that evoke some kind of reaction even after I’ve woken up and stay with me all day. The result is an amazing dream I want to repeat and I think about all day trying to remember and recapture the feeling I had when I was in the dream. So for this, my 100th post and first of the year, I’m going to talk about a dream I had that really touched me and maybe a little something more towards the end.
Do you all remember my post from back in April or so called “Almost a Speech, David, and Babies?” If you haven’t I would suggest reading that first or refreshing your memory since I’ll be referencing that in comparison to what happened last night. In that post, I talked about a dream I had concerning David Boreanaz and a baby. I don’t even recall if I mentioned it in that post, but I also posted a status on Facebook that said this: “Those nights where you have dreams that affect your mood and you can’t stop thinking about for the whole day? Yeah, had a few of those these past few days. Guess disease did something good for me. #silverlinings.” This is what happened to me basically, minus the disease part; I had another dream that shaped my mood today because I loved it so much. In my post, I had mentioned an emotion that I felt in the dream and immediately after waking up about holding my baby for the first time and having this indescribable emotion towards the tiny blood monkey (kudos to one of my high school teachers for that lovely term). The emotion in the dream was so powerful that I woke up feeling that emotion still and throughout the day I desperately wanted to maintain that emotion. It was so pleasant and beautiful that I focused a bunch of my energy doing whatever I could to preserve that emotion in writing just knowing that I wouldn’t be able to maintain that emotion physically.
So enough about then, what was my dream about? There were a lot of random events and characters in my dream. I remember driving on a crazy road in a place that looks like a three dimensional Super Mario World level with my mom, who was criticizing my turning in front of a car (going slow and a fair distance away mind you). I remember being in my high school and seeing a couple of old faces like my friends and/or teachers. I remember a bunch of white t-shirts with markings on them being arranged so the markings made a continuous circle and opened a portal to who knows where (but I assure you it was hellish and EVIL!). I also remember running down a really long hallway that doesn’t exist in my high school to what I think was the “teacher’s lounge” and destroying something evil in there. I have a lot of snippets, but it’s been too long since I’ve had the dream to remember all of it, seeing as how I had to attend my first classes of the semester today and other crap got in the way. But here we are anyway.
There’s one thing though that I distinctly remember and if you know me it will come as absolutely no surprise. Bear with me even if you don’t like hearing about this kind of stuff. It had to do with Buffy and Angel from Buffy the Vampire Slayer. We all know I’m madly in love with the show and if you really know me, you can tell me exactly what about the show I love. One of those things is the Buffy and Angel relationship, but I’m gonna stick to my dream world. As much as I love the show and adore the characters with every fiber of my being, I don’t dream about them. For them to appear in my dream is a new but unsurprising experience. What were they doing in my dream might you ask? Well dear children, let me finally get to the point and tell you.
Recall those evil t-shirts from two paragraphs up? Well I simply removed a t-shirt to disrupt the portal (though dumbass dream Jacob put it back). Next thing I know I’m seeing Angel and Buffy sitting on a couch (still in the school by the way) embracing each other. This part really irritates me, but I know they were talking and in the dream I seemed to be hearing them and understanding them, but for the life of me I can’t recall it now. The weird thing about this situation is that there was a little heart nearby the two of them with a bar next to it. It kind of looked like a life bar you might see in a video game, though I could tell that this is a “love bar” of sorts. It started out empty and as they sat and talked it would gradually fill both the heart and the bar. It eventually filled all the way up and both the bar and the heart switched from pink/red to bright green, which signified their love for each other had reached its peak. That same feeling I described in my other post is similar to what I was feeling coming from them, though for a romantic partner instead of a child, which is arguably even more powerful than the love for the child. Anyway, this green heart was a BIG deal in the dream. I felt it and I don’t really know how to describe it. Think of the thing(s) or person(s) that you love the most. If you’re married, think of how you felt when you were marrying them (or another time if you happened to love them more another time). Think of your closest friends and how you would do anything for them. Hell, think of your favorite characters in movies or shows or books that you feel so connected to it doesn’t matter if they’re real or not. Whatever it is, pick the strongest love you know. That’s what I was feeling from them. I felt (in a figurative sense; this is a dream after all) the entire world being given between them, complete and unconditional love and commitment. They would give their lives for each other and all that mumbo jumbo.
What is it that made me feel this way in particular? Well beyond my simple love of Buffy and Angel, the cursed (pronounce that like cur-sid) dialogue played a huge role. I wish I could remember it. Most importantly of all was the body language, particularly in Angel. Most communication takes place not in the words being said or the way they’re being said (albeit they are crucial), but in the body language. It was dark, it was calm, and the two of them were sitting on the couch together. Angel was lounging in the corner with one arm over the arm of the couch and the other one on top of the couch as if he were putting his arm around somebody’s shoulders. His legs were apart, he was dressed in black pants, a black, unbuttoned, long sleeve shirt and a white t-shirt underneath. Buffy was curled up with her legs on the couch and her head resting on his shoulder. One of her arms was behind him around his waist and the other was on his chest. She was wearing a neutral colored spaghetti strap tank top and a dark skirt. Both of them were looking down at the ground giving something like the thousand yard stare. They weren’t looking at each other, but just looking down at the ground and talking to each other lovingly. The heart turned green when Angel’s arm that was on top of the couch curled around her shoulder and pulled her closer while the other arm wrapped her in a hug close to him. Buffy just laid there in his arms and they talked. Nothing huge, but that’s what represented the love to me.
I have been formulating while writing this why Angel’s body language was more important to me. Buffy had already completely snuggled up close showing she cared for him, but Angel is the one who made the move to pull her in even closer than she already was. His move was a vow to protect her with his life. I think the reason I connect to that so strongly, aside from a strong connection to and love for Angel’s character, is simply because we’re both men. I don’t mean to reinforce gender stereotypes, but I think to some degree we all kind of want to fulfill them at least a little. I felt that his action echoed with my desire, as a man, to be a protector. I could go on and on about why I connect so much to Angel and why I love him, but one of those things is because of what he represents as a man. His draping his arm around Buffy and wrapping her in his arms and holding her close screams protection, devotion, and love. I’m sure I’m not the only man to ever feel protective of something or someone he loves, and even though I don’t have a wife or even a girlfriend, I still have that protective instinct over her even though I may not have even met her yet.
I don’t know how relatable this is to any of you, especially the other men. This is a battle I’ll be fighting for a long time. By legal definitions, I am a man. For all intents and purposes, I am a man, but I still don’t feel like one. I almost always refer to myself as a guy because that doesn’t carry the same weight as the word “man.” It comes down to a lot of definitions of what being a man means and I quite simply don’t think I’ve reached my idea of what one is. I still look at people my age as guys and girls, teenagers, ultimately children, especially myself. Even hearing that word “man” being used to describe anyone brings up certain ideas. Mulan’s song “Be A Man” springs to mind as a good example. If you’re familiar at all with Buffy and/or Angel, Angel struggles with whether he’s a man or a demon. He even says at one point, “It’s not the demon inside me that needs killing, it’s the man.” I just feel like man refers to such more than anatomy and age and I’m always hesitant to use it to describe myself or someone else and I don’t know why. Is any of this making any sense to you? I can’t even seem to understand what I’m thinking/feeling.
And that is all why that dream was so powerful to me. I guess I look up to Angel in a way, almost as if he set my standard for being a man. I don’t want to go on too much longer because all of this kind of spilled out without my intending it to. I was chasing that dream today hoping I could just get a glimpse of that love I felt in my dream and that complete devotion, but I guess I’ll always be chasing that dream of becoming a man, whatever that means to me.