Friday, November 05, 2010

I've Missed Dreaming

I wouldn't recommend that everyone quit their jobs and move to a different city. But I wouldn't NOT recommend it either. Since I had my emotional last day at the American Heart Association, I have enjoyed my friends and family here in Nashville while plotting, planning and preparing for our big move to Los Angeles. In that preparation, I decided it was time to give up something that I love very much: ambien.

I still have about two weeks worth left which I intend on keeping for emergencies, but thought it was time while I was unemployed and my day's work didn't depend on my night's sleep to try and ween myself off of it. The first night was rough. It took me about two hours of lounging in bed to feel drowsy. Then it took me all of two hours to wake back up. It was up and down for the next 6 hours until I had declared it time to give up the fight.

Night two was a different story. Still very much in short spurts, but then longer stretches, as if to give my unconscious self some hope. But one main difference between this night and probably 5 months of nights before: I had a dream. Not the Martin Luther King Jr. kind, but a vivid dance in between my imagination and subconscious. It was glorious. I remembered it. And some day, in some form, I'll share it, but not here.

The next night I slept longer and harder and dreamed more scenes. And slowly the dreams began to take over my thinking during my waking hours. The time I spent thinking about strategy and reports and accounts has in the last week been used to day dream. And I realized how much I missed it. Thinking without purpose or hindrance.

Last week I went with my friend Greg to see an author named Aimee Bender. I was late, but she was wonderful and as she got to the question and answer section, she became even more endearing. If you've been to a Q and A with people who are fans, you know that the questions can become more diatribes on the person's admiration than an actual question (for example, one question to Ms. Bender when boiled down to logic this night was "How do you put words together?". Seriously.) But one of those questions, and I frankly can't remember which one, led to Ms. Bender answering with "Sometimes it's good to be bored. Sometimes those crazy thoughts that we all have as humans are meant to peek through." Or something to that nature. I'm clearly paraphrasing, but the gist of the sentiment has stuck with me this week.

It made me realize something: Whether it was during the day time or night time or any time in between, I've missed dreaming. And I'm happy to be doing it again.


Nicole said...

Can I just say that it seems your writing has changed also! Before - your posts were quick, to the point, and just observations or report outs. I felt like for the first time.. in a while.. I just got some insight into who you are.

Very cool, my friend. Very cool.

Lori Anne Parker, Ph.D. said...

Nicole, I noticed the exact same thing too: that Ashley's writing on this one felt and seemed different.

Nice, Ashley: Keep dreaming!! Dreaming feeds words in ways we cannot predict or imagine.

Veggie Mama said...

@previous posters - a little less journalist ay? :) I have to agree, and it is very nice to see.

So Ash, Jamel is ALWAYS in L.A. Once you guys get settled I'll have to make a trip out w/him so I can see you! I'm so out of the loop - how did the move come about, how excited are you?! This is big...I know you guys will love it!


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