Where nightmares begin…

My husband is blessed with the most amazing dreams.  Some of them are very creative story type dreams, some are funny, sometimes in his dreams he interviews famous people.  One night he had an in depth conversation with Hippocrates about my health.  He said he got some great insights too, only he couldn’t remember them when he woke up. Darn.

I think the breath, depth and pure imagination of my husband’s dreams say a lot about him.  The dreams show what I already know…that he is very intelligent, creative, imaginative and a little crazy.  That said, I have to wonder what my dreams say about me.  I rarely remember my dreams, but when I do they are usually nightmares…things about people chasing me mostly.  I used to have reoccuring dreams about calling 911, and not be able to get through, or having them tell me they were busy etc.  I don’t have many memories of my early childhood (I think my life started when I was 10), but one of the few memories of that time is of a nightmare that I had.  I mentioned this before, remember I was in a large pit and my mother and siblings were at the top of the pit.  They walked away and left me.  I shudder to think what these dreams say about my pysche.  Fortunately, I have this blog to vouch for my relative sanity.  But then again…

The other day I had a bad dream that initiated my fight or flight response and I woke up panting…not fun. If you are like my husband, who I don’t think has ever had a bad dream, let me explain.  When you have a bad dream, it lingers in your thoughts for part of the day.  I can usually clear the lingering bad feelings by telling someone about the dream, but I couldn’t talk about this dream so it was lingering as I went to work that night.

At work, I got a phone call from one of the staff in another program that one of the teenage girls had been followed home by a man.  The girl said his vehicle was parked on the street and gave a good description of it.  Wouldn’t you know that this one one of those times when we had no male staff on?  So I and two other female staff went to check things out.  We checked the street and sure enough there was the vehicle. 

Now, I have to pause for a moment…a sidebar, if you will…and say that this stalker is not the brightest bulb.  He was driving a van and pulling a boat.  If you were going to stalk someone wouldn’t you want to be a little more inconspicuous than that?  Just saying… 

We found the vehicle as the girl had described and it was empty.  That was a little disturbing, but there are some bars close by perhaps he walked down to one of them.  So we went to check the grounds.  We were armed with a flashlight, a radio and a cell phone…ready for bear, ya know?  Honestly, I didn’t expect to see anything, we just wanted to be able to reassure that young lady that we had checked and no one was around.  As we were walking, one of the staff said, “I heard something over there.”  The other staff pointed the flashlight in that direction, and that was when I saw him.  It was like that moment in the movie Signs, when you first see an alien and quickly he disappears behind something.  You have to rewind to assure yourself that you saw what you thought you saw.  I saw a jacket with two white horizontal stripes, and the figure quickly moved behind a tree.  “I see him,” I whispered and instinctively we all started slowly stepping backwards enlarging the distance between ourselves and the stalker. 

Side Bar #2: Stalker 101…white stipes are great for people who want to be visible so they don’t get hit by cars at night, not so good when you are trying to be inconito.  And yes, I am sure it was the stalker, our property is clearly marked “private property” no one should have been out there.  Besides the van disappeared shortly after this.

Like a gunfighter from the Old West, I whipped out my cell phone and dialed 911.  I put the phone to my ear and whispered to my companions, “I’m calling 911.”  But I didn’t hear ringing.  Ack! This is just like one my nightmares, I thought.  Frantically, I looked at the phone.  Oh, yeah, I have to hit the button that says, “call”. (Yeah, I’m an idiot sometimes.)  I did that and it started ringing.  When the dispatcher answered, I told her my name and the name of my company (the police know us, they have been out to help us many times….heck I think they know me by first name too).  As quickly as I could, I explained that one of our girls had been followed home and we had seen the man on our property.  We wanted him gone immediately.  Life is full of surreal moments and this next one was one of them for me.  The operator said, “Have you approached him and asked him to leave?” 

What?!  Are you kidding?

As politely as I could, through clenched teeth, I said, “No!  This is an older man who followed a teenage girl home.  Clearly his intentions are not honorable, and we are just three women.  So no we did not approach him that is what we need you for.”  Clear enough?

After the phone call we waited for the police to come screaming into the parking lot lights flashing and sirens blaring to seize the guy, shove him to the ground and cuff him.  Ok, maybe something a bit less dramatic, but I did hope for a quick response and the security of having the police assist us.  Two hours later…the police arrived. 

Not quite the “book ’em Dano,” I was hoping for.  To be fair (because the police have been very helpful to us in the past), the officer (the lone officer, no lights or siren…sigh) apologized for not being able to come sooner.  Being Saturday night, they were very busy he said

And now you see why I have nightmares…

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