And from my pillow, looking forth by light
Of moon or favouring stars, I could behold
… a mind for ever
Voyaging through strange seas of Thought, alone.
– William Wordsworth
I sat staring at the page on my computer screen. My thoughts straying. I was riding down a stream of consciousness, the current carrying me over the falls. What was familiar anchored me, what I could grasp was my tether, as I slid deeper into unfamiliar territory. My hope? That my daydreaming would allow me to arrive someplace unexpected — to stumble upon what I’d been searching for.
What was happening to me?
Am I imagining these sensations? Are they coming from me? Are the tingles, the chills, cool breaths, the emotion that can only be described as heartfelt love … be self-induced? Was my brain misfiring and affecting my body? Or was something else causing these reactions?
“In dreams…the mind [reacts] creatively to wherever it wanders–much like a jazz improviser responds to fellow musicians to inspire what they play.” — Tom Stafford, BBC Future
Just as in my lucid dreams, where I find myself in a dreamscape, and move through, changing the scene just so to get to where I want to go, one of my ideas led to another. I mindmapped my thoughts, my experiences. I noted repeated occurrences. I retraced my movements, my routine.
And after a while, I took a mental step back and saw the big picture. Instead of seeing each individual thread, I saw how I was part of an intricate tapestry. How I shared a space with others. How we each were made of different threads, but each of us weaving ourselves together based on one loom.
Music. Sports. Language. Technology. Art…
What do they all have in common?
In tune. In the zone. Going with the flow. In sync. Trance dance…
My elbow on my desk, my head held up by my hand, awake but resting–on the verge of falling asleep, I felt pressure at my temples and then I sensed a presence embrace me.
Waves come over me, musical notes beating, and carried away by the rhythm, we start to dance–moving together as if in a tango.
“I don’t usually dance with anyone. You know, nonconformist me.”
“That’s okay. I’ll lead”
An incoming push notification jarred me out of my daydream.
An overwhelming stillness descended upon me.
Time was suspended.
My senses fled.
I was stunned, numbed, astonished.
There are exceptions to every rule, and now, in this moment, I am acutely aware of that gray area surrounding, permeating me.
It stopped my heart.
My breathing ceased.
I made the connection.
I knew what was happening.