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Not Yet Awake: A Short Story About Dreaming

I am up, but I am not yet awake.

The sun has yet to rise; the night still lurks in the shadows. If it weren’t for the bird chirping in the distance, there would be no sign at all that the day was dawning. Even the clock is more confusing than informative right now. It has one of those once-a-day times on it. In that, I usually only see a time like “4:37” once a day. What does it all mean? I forget myself as I stare blankly at the numbers on the clock from my spot on the edge of my bed. Ok, I am up. I tell myself, trying to snap out of my stupor.

I am up, but I am not yet awake.

Why am I up so early? Do I have somewhere important I have to be? Am I going to work? Am I going to the airport? Am I going to the hospital? The truth is, I don’t have anywhere to be. Paradoxically, that is why I am up so early.

But, still, I am not yet awake.

I move from my bed to my desk. I usually make my bed right when I get up. When it is this early, however, I do not consider this the appropriate time to judge that book by its cover. I mean, I am not even awake yet.

I went from staring blankly at my clock while I sat on the edge of my bed...

now I sit down at my desk with my laptop open and stare blankly at my computer screen.

How did I get here? I walked. I think. Wait, what was the question?

I am sitting on the edge of my seat.

But I am not yet awake.

I know I have an important story to tell, but… I get distracted (where did the time go?) ... I glance out the window to see if I can see that damn bird that won’t stop chirping. I can’t see anything through the screen -- not just because it is still dark, but also because it is very foggy.

Where was I? Oh yea! I had an important story to tell, but my head was in a fog and I got distracted. I am not yet awake. How could I be awake? I haven’t even made my bed yet. I got all my bases covered…in my dreams. Who else has dreams of hitting a walk off grand slam in the World Series? Me neither. It is a storybook ending. A story that’s all too easy to judge by its cover. My bed is left unmade.

When it is this early in the morning, it is often difficult to tell what is real and what is imaginary. Unfocused, I wonder if I am dreaming or not. I know for certain that I am not yet awake. This time of day has the effect of making everything blur together, not just night and dawn, but also consciousness and its “sub” version (subversion?)

At this moment it is difficult to tell if I am dreaming or not. Am I still asleep? I am definitely not yet awake. In a fog, I have no control of my thoughts – my subconscious has taken over and subverted my conscious thinking. All these words are getting away from me. I am chirping in the dark, hoping that someone will see me through the fog, and believe me when I tell you that a new day is dawning. It is just difficult to tell right now.

You are still in the dark about so much. You are not yet awake.

In the dark ages, the knight still lurks in the shadows. Outside the castle, the Royals win the World Series. Was that what I said before? In my dreams? The memory feels distant and foggy. I am still not awake.

When will I see the light?

Ironically, my eyes feel heavier now as the first hint of morning sits on the edge of my curtain staring at the clock. That is to say, the sun is shining a light on the time, as it were.

What a mess I have made. Look at my covers and judge. Wake up already!

It is all starting to dawn on me: just because I am up does not mean that I am awake. When will I see the light? Why am I in the dark?

The paradox was already mentioned. It is because I have nowhere to be that I am up so early. Either employed or unemployed the outcome is the same. What do I mean? If I am employed, and I don’t have to be at work today, then I must wake up early to make the most of my very limited free time in order to escape the grind, and if I am unemployed then all the more reason to be up early to make the most of my time – which is to say, I need to create something of value so that the world will want to buy what I am selling, so to speak, and thus provide me with the living I so desperately need. So you see, the outcome is the same: I need time to follow my dream, so that I can recapture my time in order to dream.

Those that don’t have a full time job are the lucky ones; those who follow their passions and dreams are the lucky ones.

I am not yet awake. Am I dreaming or not? Am I one of the lucky ones?

I am sitting on the edge of my seat as I stare at the screen, and not the screen where the curtains are glowing.

I am starting to see the light. It is all beginning to dawn on me.

I realize now that I am in the dark about so much. We all are. Are we dreaming or not? When will we wake up? When will we be the lucky ones?

The screen is glowing. The cursor is blinking. Through the screen I can finally see that chirping bird. He was singing a song about a new day.

The cursor is pushed to the right one letter at a time. The tap dance on the keyboard plays a song all its own. Hitting the space bar I accidentally flipped the bird. I had to, he wouldn’t stop chirping.

Is it a new day, if I am not yet awake?

I am up. Meaning, I am no longer dreaming.

As I stare at the words on the screen in front of me, I long for the numbers on the clock. They made more sense to me.

All of this seemingly senseless rambling is symbolic of the chaotic stream of consciousness that plays on repeat, inside of the mind of one, who wants to follow his dreams but does not know where to begin.

I will accept that today is a new day. I try to make sense of things; I straighten out the blanket on my bed for peace of mind. It is truly my comforter. You made your bed now lie in it, echoes in my head as I sit back down in front of my screen. It is at this moment I start to see the light and finally awaken. Being “woke” isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. I would rather be dreaming.

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