Strange dream last night. I was back in high school, hanging around with this girl I knew back then but haven’t seen or heard from in years. It was summertime, and in the dream, we were dating (though we never dated in real life – never even thought about it!).
You know how sometimes when you’re dreaming, your dream self is vaguely aware that this isn’t reality? So I’m sitting there, talking with this girl, and thinking, “This is a dream. I’m not a Michigan teenager anymore; I’m a married father of four in Minnesota. But then why does this feel just like high-school, and summer, in Michigan?”
I don’t remember a word that I said to the friend in the dream. Instead, I remember the strong feeling like I needed to get back to reality, because (like Back to the Future) if I stayed too long in the past I’d mess up a great and glorious future. But that “teenage feeling” was so authentic I was a little torn about leaving.
Finally, I excused myself, and awoke in bed.
I wouldn’t want to go back, or to do it all over again, or to change anything at all. But I do sometimes wish I could call up that feeling from time to time – like falling headlong into an unknown and exciting future. The future is still unknown, and still has the potential for excitement. So what’s changed?
I’m guessing that back then, every possibility seemed exciting. Today, some futures appear distinctly more exciting than others.