At what point do we describe a dream as merely a dream, and not a nightmare, and does the contrast between the two as set in comparative standing against one’s daily reality change the equation at all? Are some people more able to tolerate greater tumult of images ensconced within the framework of the “inner eye” that receives the moving reels of dreams, nightmares and memories? Is there a connection between reality and dreams, reality and nightmares, and dreams and nightmares?
If one can maneuver with greater functionality in the reality of the objective world, does it manifest an indicator of greater capacity to withstand and travel through the detours of subjective consciousness depicting dreams and nightmares? Does the ability to remember dreams or nightmares make a difference, as well? Is rumination, obsessive recollection, screaming nights from images perpetrated by past experiences – i.e., war-time images diagnosed as PTSD or other traumatic events that cannot be compartmentalized or otherwise set aside – a symptom of a fragile ego too sensitive to tolerate for some?
Is a nightmare an expiation of the unworkable problems of daily life, such that the subconscious mind is attempting to sort and sift so that greater survivability can be achieved upon awakening from the slumber of sleepless sleep? Is a person who experiences constant and relentless nightmares, who wakes up just as exhausted because of the reliving of the experiences of prior trauma, actually asleep, or does the conceptual paradigm of “being asleep” necessarily include attaining a restorative plateau of rest?
It is, indeed, a complex interaction between the tripartite components of our daily experiences, both subjective and objective.
For Federal employees and U.S. Postal workers who suffer from a reality which exceeds the nightmare, but more importantly, that dashes the dreams – both in the real sense of a dream while asleep, as well as the figurative dream in the sense of hope for the future – that paves the pathway for future anticipation, it is always important to balance the spectrum and pendulum between the deteriorating medical condition one suffers from, against the dreams one experiences, and contrast them against the nightmare of daily agony and the sleepless nightmares that awaken one with sweats and pools of angst.
Preparing an effective Federal Disability Retirement application, to be submitted and waited upon with the U.S. Office of Personnel Management, can sometimes appear to be in the “nightmare” category; but for those Federal and Postal employees who have to file such an animal, whether the Federal or Postal employee is under FERS, CSRS or CSRS Offset, the objective reality is that the medical conditions themselves already constitute a tumultuous reality that exceeds any nightmare conceived, and that is precisely why it becomes time for the Federal or Postal employee to prepare, formulate and file an effective OPM Disability Retirement application because, when reality exceeds the nightmare, it is time to wake up and tackle the monster of reality in order to be able to return to a restful slumber where dreams bring a smile upon the grimacing lips that shy away from nightmares.
Robert R. McGill, Esquire