I get anxiety dreams before races, I have discovered.
The oddest recurring dream ever was a few years ago before I rode (or tried to ride) my first road bike century. M would be leaving for Nevada to research Burning Man, and I would be heading to Vermont. All summer long, I had this dream about falling off my bike and breaking my hands. I'd hit a curb. I'd fly over a tree branch. I'd overshoot a curb. I'd endo on a street crack. But over and over again... the dream ended in broken bones.
This was the summer I slid on the tracks and DID break my right hand. Yeah, it was kind of creepy, especially in the beginning when I was on the pain narcotics and high as a kite.
But in happier times, I still have anxiety dreams. Sometimes, I get in the water and realize I don't know how to swim. Usually, it's preparation related. Once, I dreamed I left my wetsuit behind so I had to do the swim with the little kiddie arm bubbles.
I tend to dream very vividly. In fact, I'm able to do lucid dreaming which can be cool sometimes. Other times, it's a relief to be able to look and see that I'm dreaming. (And yes, Inception was creepy weird.) So these anxiety dreams are a little unnerving.
Because of these dreams, I have a set of four-page checklists for tri packing and preparation.
Last night's dream started with me waking up in my own bed, on a brightly lit morning of Sept. 11, 2011. I could see on the clock that it was about 7:10. This was a problem because on Sept. 11, I'm supposed to be getting up at 4:30AM or so, in the dark, in Washington, D.C. I realized this quite quickly, pulled on my tri outfit, and ran to the airport.
This was NOT a good dream, as I was running through an airport wearing lycra and Chaco flipflops. Quite aside from the "why am I running around in public in skin-tight clothing" was the "man, I am going to be REALLY cold on the plane" and the icky-squicky "I am going to have to go barefoot through security". I ALWAYS wear shoes with socks when traveling. I think there's nothing grosser than putting my bare feet down in an airport, anywhere. I have no problem with the TSA naked-pictures or Cuddles McFrisker, but bare feet? Not gonna happen.
At the dream airport, I had a terrible time convincing the ticket people sell me a ticket. M was gone somewhere in the shuffle, which is ALSO a problem as he's my special-needs cochlear holding person. But I had my tri bag and I was ready to go, and I figured with the time change that if I got a plane right now, I could still make the race. Yes, I know that Pacific time is behind Atlantic time, but my subconscious apparently doesn't.
Things got a little confused in the dream as I was standing in the plane aisle with my multitool trying to take my bike apart to get it into the overhead bins and the flight attendant was trying to adjust the venetian blinds over the plane windows, and another attendant was offering all flyers a warm kitty cat.
That last one, actually, could be useful...
Somewhere around there is when M started shaking me to wake me up. There's something about that man and mornings and coffee and especially weekends when we go to a coffeeshop for a morning date.
We shall never know if I ever got the bike into the overhead bin.