When I close my eyes at night, my sleeping brain fills with rich, vivid scenes that might as well have been cut out of a movie. It’s always been that way for me, since before I can remember. When I was in college, I took a required course on creativity in business where one of our semester projects was to keep a dream journal. At the end of the semester, most of my classmates submitted a 10-page-or-so, double-spaced document stapled together with their name on top. Mine was over 60 pages, single-spaced, with pictures, headings, and formatting, and the stack was too thick to staple, so I had to put it all into one of those 3-hole-punched portfolio folders. My professor was floored; didn’t want to believe I actually dreamed that often with that much detail.
The other day I posted a Facebook update about the different psychologies of fear associated with movie monsters, specifically Alien and Predator. It was just a weird, random thought that happened to pop into my head, but after giving it some more thought, I realized there is more to it. There’s a reason why this was on my mind, and it has to do with identity crisis. Now, bear with me, because this is coming together in my brain as I am typing it.
I was born, and lived the first thirteen years of my life in a small European country, going to school with the same group of twenty kids from the first day of kindergarten to the day my family packed up and moved across the ocean. I was a straight A student, with a steady group of friends, I was on a swim team, and I had a tight-knit family around whom I spent a lot of time. I knew exactly who and what I was.
And then we moved.