Writing my way through the A-to-Z blogging challenge, I’ll be using manicules (those pointing finger symbols) to direct your attention to something I’m pondering that delights or interests me. Each entry is somehow related to an unusual, obscure, or simply charming to me word.
S is for…
somnambulism – an abnormal condition of sleep in which motor acts (such as walking) are performed. First known usage 1797.
Sleepwalking is a disorder of arousal, meaning it occurs during N3 sleep, the deepest stage of non-rapid eye movement (NREM) sleep.
I think most people are more aware of REM (rapid eye movement) sleep, which is associated with dreaming and memory consolidation. But sleepwalking occurs during non-REM sleep, often earlier in the night. It’s experienced more often by children and often outgrown by adolescence. That was true for me – I was a sleepwalker as a child and I outgrew it.
I know a lot about sleep, besides my experiences as a somnambulist. I came to it sort of from a backdoor entrance – I’ve been interested in dreams since I was a child. I have always been a prolific dreamer, have always been fascinated by them, and have recorded my dreams since adolescence. My interest is so great I actually considered doing my Masters degree work on lucid dreaming, although eventually I moved in another direction.
I take great delight in my sleeping mind’s theater, and since I record my dreams, I always make a point to title my nighttime adventures. Bonus points, because I have the added amusement of seeing what kind of dada-esque poem is created when I list out the titles. For example, here are just a few of my recent nocturnal engagements:
- Not the Proper Place to Leave the Ladder
- Mailbox Haul includes Polish Man’s Suit
- What Crazy Thing Did I Ask For?
- Orange & Green Feathers on my Legs
- Hidden Room & Demanding Guests with Raisins on a String
- Busted as Incompetent Spies
- Strange Eggs
- Uniform Prototypes and Surgically Removed Eyebrows
- Awkward Nudist
- Outing the Bagel Eater
Now tell me, does that make you wish you had access to my brain, or are you ready to back away gingerly?
In case you’re undecided, let me share a recent dream snippet.
I may have been overly influenced by thinking about birthday celebrations and reading Greek mythology but I had a perfectly marvelous fun time at:
Pandora’s Pinata Parade
As Empress, it was my job to create a parade in celebration of all things wonderful in the world. (Ah, I like a good dream wherein my Empress qualifications are recognized!) So I created my version of a Trojan Horse – a gigantic pinata filled with all manner of wonderful things that would come popping out at parade time. And as Pandora has been, in my mind, scapegoated for far too long with responsibility for releasing all the evils on Earth, I wanted to do my part to lift her spirits and change the story. Therefore, I put her in charge of opening the trap door on the pinata at the right moment and releasing all the wonderfulness amidst much delight and cheering from the crowd. I especially liked the shooting stars that erupted, leaving behind as they ascended, little trails of chocolate stars for us all to eat. And then there were the tiny seashells that you put in water and out popped gorgeous little flowers; library cards for everyone with unlimited priviledges; and little knitted balls for tossing that turned out to be rolled up socks in delightfully wild patterns. There was much singing and laughing, and when people danced they found they had strings of bells on their ankles. The whole affair was quite a happy success.
Now what about you? Every had a sleepwalking experience? Remember your dreams? Wished on a star? Do tell – you know I love to hear.