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Nightmares through my life

Johanna Vedral 

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Vedral, Johanna (2001 Oct). Nightmares through my life.  Electric Dreams 8(10). Retrieved from Electric Dreams December 28, 2001 on the World Wide Web: http://www.dreamgate.com/electric-dreams 

Nightmares through my life

By Johanna Vedral



The first dream I remember is a nightmare. I remember this dream as well as it would be the dream of the last night. I think I was about 3 or 4 years old when I had this dream
(when my parents got divorced. I had to stay at my mother who needed all the space for her own like the truck in this dream). I wrote it down some years later.

"Go away!"

I am in a duct, a passage without windows or doors, this duct is as wide and as high as a truck. There is bright electric light, everything is nearly white. Behind me a truck ­ as wide and as high as the duct!!! ­ comes along! I am running away, I don't want to be squealed. Now on the right side I find a door, and I open the door and jump into the room just in the last moment before the truck catches me. The room is dark. A creature hanging on another door in this room like a coat hanging on a hook talks to me and says: "Go away!" I am afraid of this creature and have to leave this dark room. I open the door to the duct ­ just when the truck races along ­ I can not go out ­ I can not stay inside…
In this dilemma I awake.

Recurring nightmares in my childhood let me be haunted by male monsters or the "Dark Man" ­ and I tried to take control over the dream by waking me up ­ every time the "Dark Man" letting a little bit closer…
Looking back it is very amazing for me that the monsters that haunted me were male ­ because I had a very bad relationship with my mother (including violence and child abuse).
When I was a teenager my nightmares offered me a more sexualised version of the "Dark Man" ­ now it was obvious he wanted to rape me. One dream (at the age of 31) that pointed on sexual child abuse distracted me especially because I can not remember being attacked like this:

I was a child. I was on a street waiting form y father. I entered a public bathroom. A man dragged me behind a wall, doing something sexual to me. I shouted, shouted, shouted, he was not allowed to do that, because I had a concussion of the brain.
A woman found me and helped me to look form y father. The woman was sitting with me at a tub station. I was younger now, wearing a turquoise t-shirt. My mother came. The woman was talking to her. I was mute. My mother talked of going to the sea with me, there I could play with the sand.

Most of my nightmares could be described as Patricia Garfield called in her Universal Dreams "Theme 1: being chased or attacked by somebody". The typical aggressor is "the dark man" who persecutes me to kill me, to rape me, to torture me. Often he is a brutal intruder. Sometimes he appears as a monster. In comparison to this bad guy the bad witch is a rarity in my dreams. Sometimes the persecutors are aliens.

On an Alpine pasture, with my kids and a group of other people, including a friend of mine, Maria with her kids. Some kids fell down with their bikes and blessed their knees, my kids, too. Maria asked the other wanderers for adhesive plasters. One of the wanderers gave me a little silber coin from another land. Suddenly a thunder storm came, dark and yellow clouds.
Maria and I were about 200 meters away from the others. Maria was running to the kids, me too, but I could only run very slowly, like I would run through water. I was afraid of flashes. Suddenly the earth opened, there was a glowing and shining, and an UFO was coming out of the earth. We were all running away.

Since I am a mother I developed a new type of nightmares:


On the street. A woman had her baby in a basket left on the street and said she would take it soon. A Yugoslavian bus stopped, a dark man got out, took the baby and drove away. I ran after the bus and cried desperately "My baby!" But they are driving away, my baby has gone for ever.

In other dreams of this type are wounded babies, babies who are neglected and dying, children dying by accidents. I think most parents know dreams like this. In comparison, my children report from their nightmares that mother, father, grandparents or siblings are hurt or dead and they are helpless against the aggressor.

A typical nightmarish night in my thirties:

I am in a dark store. Alone with the dealer. I go to the bathroom, he follows me, with a naked belly. I am shouting and running outside. In the store he is trying to take my red bike away. I am throwing typewriters at him. His wife and his child are coming. I run on the street.

Three terrible monsters with glowing eyes paralysed me with rays from their throat charkas. I was not able to change their shape.

I visited my first husband and his mother. They were torturing me with electricity with the plug of the TV. I tried to escape the pain with crying and crazy talking ­ and awake.

Through the years having survived a lot of nightmares, I got cut into pieces, shot down, burned, drowned, got drowned, tortured by eclectricity, needles, injections, were swallowing glass, raped, badly hit… My persecutors and enemies were vampires, sorcerers, witches, demons, ghosts, soldiers, murderers, priests, policemen, psychopaths, Nazis, devils, parasites, spiders, snakes, wolves, crazy cats and so on. My parents and grandparents had a lot of terrible experiences according to living in a land that lost World War II. In some of my nightmares there appear bombs, explosions, hiding in the air-raid shelter and war scenes as a collective remembrance. Sometimes it was possible for me to rewrite the recurring scenes of persecution, torture, intruding and running away. An example for a healing in the confrontation with the "dark man":

A car with three friends of mine is waiting. I run after them on a snowy street, I slipped and fell, I lost my umbrella and my bags. Over me loose hanging voltage. My friends are driving away, I am running through a duct. A man persecutes me. I want to wake up myself, but then I decide to confront him and look with love into his face. The murderer is changing and offers me a drink. I dare to look at him detailly. He is wearing a shirt with a design of sad lions. He remembers me of my ex husband.

When I tried to force lucidity in my dreams (with the Nova Dreamer) 5 years ago at the age of 29 the number of nightmares increased, and there appeared new nightmare types:

A couple, nearly naked, was going in a small boat. High waves, she was going over board several times, but he helped her. A fleet of huge warships and a plane came along. The couple was captured.
Now I was the woman. I was brought into a house. Taken away by two men, I could not say goodbye to my man. They brought me to a row of chairs where other people were sitting. My son was taken away, but he laughed. I had to recapitulate µy former life. I told them I am 30, talked about my weddings, my divorces, my children, my abortions, my studies at university, my writing projects… But they did not listen to me carefully. They put on a heavy helmet on my head that connected me with a synchronisator and a brain wave changing machine, in a row with the other people. I shouted I had the right to know where my child was, I was shouting a long time. They tuned the volume in the helmet down.
It was like in a supermarket, people were buying shampoo and other things right by our side. I was shouting. The helmet was unbearable heavy. Other people had not so heavy headgears, some had only wigs. I cried, my helmet is too heavy! I could nearly hold the helmet with my neck muscles. They punished me by cutting my (very long) hair. I shouted on and on. I commited the faces of the drunken guards to my memory to bring them to court later. Finally my shouting helped ­ I got a light headset instead of the helmet from a new guard.

Another nightmare in the lucid dreaming time, its of the type "nightmares of a mother":

I was going by tub. The tub was going through a hospital. We could see hurt people through glass windows. We stopped at a big shit machine. A woman ordered me to clean containers of shit. I got dirty, I felt nausea. A child about 18 months old was brought. I should work with this child. It was said it had deep inner wounds because of the attack of a murderer. The feet of the child were amputated. I was cleaning. I was shocked. The child was drinking a bottle sitting on its mother. The mother was very cold when the child was crying.

The most distractive dreams for me are the ones in which dismemberment takes place:

I was walking on the Schafberg mountain. I am pausing on a bench. Under the bench is dirt like dirty napkins and so on. I fall asleep (in the dream) and see amputated arms and legs with eyes! My son is crying. I am confused of my state of consciousness ­ am I dreaming, am I awake?

During the last years, I had a lot of unpleasant encounters with spiders. This led me to a deeper and more intensive examination of the dream symbol spider. I collected more than 200 spider dreams by now (41 of my own, by now) and I am still working on the spider dream book project (now a little bit slowly, because my new baby needs a lot of time).
As an example my recent spider dream: For me it illustrates the correlation between my bad relationship to my mother and persistant nightmares. This dream asks me to work on the Mother archetype for not to contaminate my new baby with my mother complex.

14.8.01 (55.birthday of my mother ): spider on the wall
I was in the room I had in the house of my mother (I went out at the age of 16 because my mother and I had a very difficult relationship). On the wall right of the window a big black spider - as big as my hand! First she was just sitting there, than she began to crawl around. My (2 weeks old baby daughter, my third child) and me were sitting on the bed. The spider was going under the bed! My black cat Platon was after the spider. I threw pillows on the spider. Then I tried to hit her with a fat red book named "The year of the holy" (a book full of stories about the Christian martyrs ), I threw the book on Platons back. Now the spider was half dead and sloughed like a snake, now there were two spiders! One part of her on the window sill, the other on the book board. Then there was one of the spiders on the board of the anteroom in the flat I live now and was just moving! The spider was Platon but my baby too! And I finally squeezed it.

I finish this article on the day after the horrible terror attempts in the USA. It seems to me as if the nightmares of thousands of people have come true. Today watching the news is more horrible than watching a horror movie. But instead of becoming afraid over these events, let's all pray for more LOVE and more WISDOM to wake up within everyone here on earth!