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    Getting rid of nightmares

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    Beware_of_Italics
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    Getting rid of nightmares

    Post  Beware_of_Italics on Wed Oct 12, 2011 3:23 pm

    How does one get rid of nightmares? After a pet dies, I usually have bad dreams about them for a few years. They're always the living dead, and then finally - years later - I'll have a cheerful dream about them being healthy and the bad dreams stop completely. It's just the way I grieve, I guess.

    This latest one though is about a canary (Westley) I used to have. You would think it'd take longer to get over the death of a dog or cat, but this bird of mine died close to 10 years ago. TEN! I just now woke up from yet another horrible 'living dead' dream about him.

    When Westley was alive, I doted on this bird like mad. Even today, my family laughs at how obsessed I was with caring for this bird. I worried myself silly over him being happy and healthy. (Canary's are very sensitive to their surroundings, physically and emotionally. And with birds in general, it's difficult to know when they're sick). Anyway, Westley got very sick and there wasn't a vet I could take him to. They all told me they don't specialize in birds. Only one vet said the same thing, but told me I could bring him in anyway. She didn't sound very serious, and was going to charge me more than I could afford. (An astronomical fee, esp when you consider that this is a little bird we're talking about). So I went to a very popular and credible site specializing in holistic medicine for birds. It, too, was expensive but affordable. I felt it was worth giving it a try, as the alternative was doing nothing. I knew it was a fact that he'd die if I did nothing.

    Anyway, the meds/vitamins didn't work. I've always blamed myself for his death, wondering if it's something I did. I say this because about once a month, on a day the weather was nice, I would take his cage outside so he could get some fresh air and have a little bath. He LOVED this!) After he died I just wondered if maybe he inhaled something out there - a chemical of some sort - which made him sick. (Canaries are sensitive to a lot of chemicals; even glass cleaners).

    So I know that's why I have these nightmares. The guilt of maybe it's my fault. They say to give them fresh air every once in a while, but what if that's what got him sick? Also-- when he got sick, at first I thought he was acting so strange just because he was molting again. He acted 'silly' even, so at first my family and I brushed it off as molting. I even described his behavior on a canary message board, and they agreed it was just him in the middle of a molt.

    But about these nightmares: In these dreams I suddenly recall Westley, and then run to his cage only to find him as the living dead. I realize with horror that I haven't fed him in months and that his cage is a pig sty. Words cannot describe the horror of my feelings in these dreams. The details vary from dream to dream, and are pretty awful, but the main jest is what I described above.

    All I know is I am sick of these dreams and it's time that they stopped. Forever.
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    Re: Getting rid of nightmares

    Post  Violet on Wed Oct 12, 2011 9:28 pm

    Kristin this must be absolutely horrible for you



    Please don't feel bad or guilty about your pet any more, we had birds as kids and they do enjoy a bit of fresh air, I think it was simply your pet's time to go, I don't think you did anything wrong it sounds like you followed all care advice to the letter, going above and beyond.



    So the nightmares now, is there a situation in your life at the moment which is resurrecting those awful guilty feelings (not about your pet, but making you feel the same as you did about your pet) which could be being processed by your mind and resulting in nightmares about your pet because your brain associates your guilt with that? I'm no professional at anything, so please feel free to ignore i'm just trying to get across how weirdly the mind can work sometimes, having had plenty of nightmares myself.



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    Re: Getting rid of nightmares

    Post  Beware_of_Italics on Wed Oct 12, 2011 11:47 pm

    Violet wrote:So the nightmares now, is there a situation in your life at the moment which is resurrecting those awful guilty feelings (not about your pet, but making you feel the same as you did about your pet) which could be being processed by your mind and resulting in nightmares about your pet because your brain associates your guilt with that? I'm no professional at anything, so please feel free to ignore i'm just trying to get across how weirdly the mind can work sometimes, having had plenty of nightmares myself.

    Nothing comes to mind, but that is one awesome theory. I never would have thought of that, but I WILL be considering it since this has been going on for so very long. It really is becoming quite tiresome and I'm willing to consider every theory out there if it can possibly stop these nightmares. (It's too bad I'm not a lucid dreamer. If I was, I'd have turned these nightmares around a long time ago).

    With two of my dogs I had dreams like this, but the longest running nightmare of the two lasted for about a year or two. The last dream I had which stopped the nightmares was so JOYFUL, too. (I saw "Bambi" all rosy and healthy. I shouted for my family to come see her. I remember petting her and hugging her. It felt so real because in this dream I could even feel her fur beneath my fingers. I just kept shouting for my family to come and look, but once they got there they couldn't see her. Only I could).
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    Re: Getting rid of nightmares

    Post  feather on Fri Oct 14, 2011 2:46 am

    Just a thought, Kristin. Is there an area in your life where you yourself feel like a caged bird...unable to do what you wish yourself or relying on others... or tied to a way of life that is not of your choice.

    or ....Maybe you are having trouble coping with the job of being a 'carer'....having the responsibility of being the life line, that some being who is dependent on you, needs.
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    Re: Getting rid of nightmares

    Post  Beware_of_Italics on Fri Oct 14, 2011 5:57 am

    feather wrote:Just a thought, Kristin. Is there an area in your life where you yourself feel like a caged bird...unable to do what you wish yourself or relying on others... or tied to a way of life that is not of your choice.

    or ....Maybe you are having trouble coping with the job of being a 'carer'....having the responsibility of being the life line, that some being who is dependent on you, needs.

    Not really, no, but I am definitely feeling very lost. I've kind of felt like that my entire life to be honest. Even to the point of feeling like I'm living in the wrong ERA. Lol! I am at a crossroads right now, and the future looks bleak to me, but these nightmares only started directly after Westley died and just never stopped.

    That's another great interpretation by the way. Feeling like a caged bird. Until I started this thread it never even occured to me to think of these nightmares as not just being about Westley. While I do think it's about him, as it can't be coincidence that I had the exact type of nightmares after two of my dogs passed away, I'm still open to other interpretations b/c I really want these dreams to stop.

    Also, about 85% of my regular dreams do involve animals, so you all might be on to something there. In a lot of my animal dreams, I'm always trying to rescue them. So yeah... maybe that's just another level to what these Westley nightmares are about. Maybe it's about Westley AND this rescue theme I've got going on in so many of my dreams.

    Ahh, ya see? This forum is so fantastic. I never would have thought of that if not for brainstorming with you kind folks.
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    Re: Getting rid of nightmares

    Post  feather on Fri Oct 14, 2011 8:14 am

    Hi Kristin, I too have a thing about animals. I let my mind wonder on this one...It was easy because I also share with you the way you feel about life and animals. See if anything rings a bell for you. This is kind of like I feel sometimes.

    Animals... being killed....the terrible pain and cruelty.... Pets, death...can't stop it ...can't ease their pain....unable to help no matter what....I do my best...I should be able to do more...I can't....I feel a failure...I feel lost....I can't forget....I need reassurance....did I do the right thing?....

    Do I feel like I myself am caged?....yes, I feel that I don't belong here?....I wish I was in a place where animals don't suffer....What is my purpose here?....Do I feel like the living dead?...

    What should I be doing?...I feel so much pain when animals are in distress...I feel so useless....If only I could eliminate animal distress...then maybe I would feel better....

    I can only do so much....it seems like it's never enough...what should I do?...Please God tell me! ...help me find peace.



    ...And God says...

    'By continually worrying you are like a caged bird...destined to a living death....unable to fly....unless you can understand that in the Circle of Life...everything is born and dies...and whatever happens in the middle...the only thing that really matters is that you love and wish to make a difference and YOU ARE DOING JUST THAT!... by just being you. It's time to spread your wings and fly. Open the cage door and live...embrace life...the good and the bad....the happy and the sad...

    Animals are there for you and you are there to do what you are able.for them...you cannot ask more of yourself....everything happens just as it is meant to....and you are an important part of it....

    Pets are Angels that come to be with you to allow you to hear and feel only one message...'Real Love' has no conditions....

    They only live a short time because that is all the time it takes.

    There's nothing to worry about...your Canary still sings and you Dogs still woof....and they are waiting right there in your heart to see you smile.'

    What do you think??? Kristin.
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    Re: Getting rid of nightmares

    Post  Beware_of_Italics on Fri Oct 14, 2011 10:18 pm

    Oh yeah, I agree with a lot of that.

    And I don't worry about my pets that have passed in my daily life at all. I know they're in a better place, and that my grandmother is spoiling them rotten. It's only that this particular dream I can't seem to control.

    Honestly, I think one day I'll be lucid enough while having these bad dreams that I'll turn it all around. After that, they'll stop completely.
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    Re: Getting rid of nightmares

    Post  feather on Sat Oct 15, 2011 2:17 am

    You are probably right. Kristin. Just one thing..What is the key emotion that you experience in the dream. And what is the feeling that you have thinking about the dream? there could be a clue in that....sometimes the subconscious knows what the conscious mind has has discounted and denied and feelings and dreams coming up for review are the clues.
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    Re: Getting rid of nightmares

    Post  Beware_of_Italics on Sat Oct 15, 2011 4:32 am

    Hmm, the key emotion.... feeling completely shocked that I've forgotten all about him, and that all this time he was just patiently waiting for me to find him.
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    Re: Getting rid of nightmares

    Post  feather on Sat Oct 15, 2011 7:54 am

    I used to have a dream quite a while ago a little bit similar...but mine was about hens. When I was little I used to have a lot to do with Grandma's hens...I used to carry the bantams around like pets and loved to collect the eggs.

    My dream was like this...I would go to the hen house to get the eggs and discover that I hadn't fed them ...and couldn't remember when I did feed them. They were alright but I felt mortified that I had forgotten them...so in some dreams I'd give them more than needed or sometimes in others something interrupted me and I'd forget to feed them again.

    The dream was never set in the place where I used to carry around the hens when I was a little kid. The dream was always set in a chook yard at a place where I used to live when I was about 23 and had one baby.... and I was having a hard time coping.

    But the dream actually occurred after the kids grew up and left home and I was again having a hard time coping but this time with their absence.

    I don't have these dreams anymore, since I have been more aware in a spiritual way...maybe it is something to do with remembering to nurture and feed your own soul....because for some of us our own soul needs come last...always something gets in the way that distracts us....responsibilities of living and relationships.
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    Re: Getting rid of nightmares

    Post  Beware_of_Italics on Sat Oct 15, 2011 11:24 pm

    Speaking of forgetting in dreams, there's also that ever so popular dream which I think we all have.

    The dreaded "OMG, I forgot to go to school this entire semester and final exams are coming up! Oh my goodness, just WHERE are my classes again? And just where is my locker and what's the combination?"
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    Re: Getting rid of nightmares

    Post  feather on Sun Oct 16, 2011 1:31 am

    Yes, Kristin, in my variation of that dream....I'd get into the exam and find that (it was always mathematics B...the one with the formulas and more physics aligned) our teacher hadn't taught us anything except the first chapter in the text book and I was so bewildered because I hadn't thought about it at all until I got into the exam. The dream wasn't about how I felt trying to do the exam...but the anguish I felt remembering that I hadn't been taught or even followed it up myself and so not learned anything that I was about to be examined on. I could even see in the dream, the text book opened to a page with mathematics that I couldn't understand. That dream used to recurr a lot...haven't had it for a while now.

    Another quite anguish filled dream that I had a lot once was ...I'd be driving the family car (and in reality... I don't city drive only bush drive...I get too nervous doing traffic, left and right and rules and city parking...) and I would have pull over to the curb to stop to wait for someone who I had to meet ...usually my husband ...and I could not stop...the brake pedal wouldn't work ...it would be too hard to push in and I would have to keep driving and look for turning spots so I could go back...but then I'd get into traffic and I'd get hemmed in and lost. Sometimes in the dream my husband would check the brakes first and there'd be nothing wrong with the brake pedal and then the dream would progress and I'd have the same thing happen again. Sometimes it was trying to stop going up a hill and I'd push harder and harder on the brake pedal and nothing would happen...the pedal wouldn't push in. And I'd be in a state of panic. I haven't had those for a while now. This dream is easier for me to interpret knowing my own insecurities.
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    Re: Getting rid of nightmares

    Post  Violet on Wed Oct 26, 2011 10:42 pm

    Beware_of_Italics wrote:Speaking of forgetting in dreams, there's also that ever so popular dream which I think we all have.

    The dreaded "OMG, I forgot to go to school this entire semester and final exams are coming up! Oh my goodness, just WHERE are my classes again? And just where is my locker and what's the combination?"



    this made me I have so many like this it's really quite horrible as I wake up tired after dreams like this and the panic and flapping is SO real in dreams



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