Thursday, April 8, 2010

Nightmares & Becoming New

(This is an example of the new work Marcy will be displaying here in Erie at the Arts & Drafts Fest at the Brewerie. If you're a local reader, we'd love to see you! Thursday, Friday, and Saturday from 7 to close. There will also be a steady stream of live music.)

I've been having nightmares again. For a few weeks now, they've been rather regular -- or "regular" compared to the "barely ever" that I was getting quite used to. Every couple of nights, they border on night terrors.

This happened again this week and I was so disturbed and tired and wigged out that I ended up posting about it on Facebook. No details. Just the origin of my tiredness.

A yogini whom I admire very much brought up the idea that the nightmares might be due to all the awesome change that I have recently gone through. She said that good change can bring old crap to the surface. This old crap in yoga would be called samskara. Seeds from past actions and "past" could be how many lifetimes ago in the yogic way of thinking?!

Regardless of the metaphysics of this, there is a basic truth to it.

As I've said before, depression does not appreciate having happiness hanging around. My brain has a lot of well-worn depression and anxiety pathways, and as I carve new ones with all this happiness, it seems logical that occasionally my brain would trip into the old patterns.

When I am asleep, of course, I'm super vulnerable.

Also, as I become happier and happier, there is a part of me, I believe, that is comfortable with airing old and dirty laundry. My subconscious feels safe, like it's okay to deal with this stuff now because I have the necessary tools.

Whatev, right? I would like the nightmares to stop, please.

I am not just whining about it, though. I am also taking action.

I started a 40 day kriya. You can see a great description of what I am doing right here.

I've started some new evening prayers.

And my good friend, who wrote about all of this over here, has suggested meditation with specific colors of candles.

Have you ever experienced anything like this? A physical or emotional or mental response to new growth? How did you end up dealing with it?


Suburban Yogini said...

Yes, absolutely, although my terrors take the form of panic attacks rather than nightmares. Whenever I make progress emotionally, mentally, physically, on or off my mat samskaras (aka old crap) comes to the surface. Once I'm over the initial "oh bugger another panic attack" shock, I see it as a good thing. The crap is rising to the surface ready to be skimmed off and thrown away.

A bit like making jam.

svasti said...

Marcy's art is awesome :)

I'm in full agreement with Linda re: old stuff coming up when change occurs. And also with what you said about feeling safe to air old wounds.

You can choose to view these things as a test or just that now you are stronger and with happiness embedded more fully into your heart, mind and body... there's less room for any lingering negativity to remain in hidden corners.

Sort of like wringing the last bit of water out of something you've washed. There's always a bit of moisture left - so we hang it out to dry. And that drying is a process that requires heat and a change of state.

Look at me, comparing your changes to wringing out the washing! ;)

But I hope you know what I mean. Consider it an internal spring clean on a metaphysical level. And be grateful and accepting of that work. The nightmares will end once you've stopped fighting them. xo

Linda-Sama said...

of course you can also go to India and jump in the Ganges like I did...Ganga Ma will clear all that out, too....;) :)

Torrie said...

You are not alone on this one. For 2 weeks before a huge shift in my life began I had terrible graphic nightmares. I've NEVER had that before and it totally freaked me out. But once I began to see what was happening in my awake life I had to believe it was some sort of release of old crap.

Analiese Marie said...

I think that when we go through periods of extreme growth, it does bring a lot of mental/emotional garbage to the surface (I mean "garbage" in a neutral way...junk, clutter, whatever you want to call it). Whenever I'm going through great growth or change, I have odd dreams and sometimes physical responses like extra energy or no energy at all, weird anxious feelings in my stomach, etc. The physical is inseparable from the mental/emotional aspects, *especially* when we're whole or in the process of becoming more whole. So it makes perfect sense to me.

Rowena said...

Nightmares are a mystery to me. I don't really get them, maybe once a year or so. But my almost 5 year old son does get them, and I don't know why or what I can do about them.

A mystery, I tell ya.

Christine Claire Reed said...

I love all the domestic metaphors floating around here. They are really accurate. :)

The insights are really helpful.

Oh, if I could jump in the Ganges, Linda. Yes...great idea. Or another equivalent for me would be a pilgrimage to Lourdes and a dip in that spring water. Now this is giving me all sorts of ideas....

One thing coming of this is definitely more and better self care. Something I tend to SUCK at. :)

Anonymous said...

Love Marcy's artwork and artistic style!

Thanks so much for linking to the kriya, that sounds like a wonderful way to get gunk out and help relax. I try to set aside some meditation time right before bed time - very relaxing music, some slow easy stretches, and truly letting go the day before going to sleep. You may already do something like this, but it helps clear the mind for peaceful sleep.