When I was a child, I had several recurring dreams that were truly terrifying. My cries of terror transgressed sleep and would leave me panicked, shouting out loud and visibly shaken. Below, is one of these dreams; simply retelling it still has the power to shadow me in dread….
It would always begin with my parents and myself sitting in our living room. In this particular dream, I would be sitting on a chair opposite my mother and father, terrified, waiting for the inevitable knocking on the living room to take place. When it came, I would plead with my father not to answer it, but, as is the futility of attempting to divert a dream, he always would.
On seeing him about to turn the handle to open the door, I would run back to the sofa and curl up in a ball, gazing out from a gap between my fingers. As always, a man and a woman would step in, the living duplicates of my parents, their hands held aloft, their thumbs parted and tips joined, as if poised to strangle my mother and father; and, finally, they would make their way towards their intended victims with slow – dreadfully slow – exaggerated steps.
At this point the dream would conclude with pitiful screaming – my own – a pleading for my parents to run. But they never did. And every time I knew that they were to be replaced…