Weird dreams are my wheelhouse. I’ve had incredibly vivid, often recurring, and (fortunately) lucid dreams for my entire life.
For example, one particularly common one from my younger years involved me running away from a T-rex through a specific part of the private school I attended in Australia. I was running and running and running, but of course, nothing could get me further from my impending doom. So I would wake myself up because frankly, it’s not worth it to be scared in your sleep.
No, I definitely did not watch too much of this movie as a child (or an adult).
I’ve also had lots of strange, strange dreams about horse things.
When I was younger and didn’t ride, I would dream about everything that led up to riding. I’d carefully groom and tack up a horse to go on a trail ride, but right as we were about to get on I would be woken up to go to school, or snap out of the dream. EPIC disappointment. Sometimes I’d go back to sleep and try to replay the dream from the beginning just to get to the riding bit, but of course I’d never get there. My brain simply didn’t have the data to fabricate a dream about riding, so it wouldn’t.
Because what brain could really fabricate the shit that ACTUALLY happens to me?!
These days my riding dreams involve a fair bit of actual riding, some general interactions with horses, but mostly an absolute ton of weird shit that just would never happen.
Fairly frequently, especially since I competed my first event, I dream that I’m about to go out on cross country but my horse isn’t with me. Instead, I run the course on foot and jump all the fences on all-fours. Shockingly there was never a question of whether or not I made time.
I also dream a lot about being late for my dressage tests. I don’t know why this is so much more important for dressage than other phases, but it is. Usually it’s just your standard running-late ridiculousness — I’m not tacked up, Murray isn’t groomed, I’m still getting dressed etc. during my ride time — but sometimes there are extra weird things. Murray will disappear out from under me right as I’m supposed to go into the ring. I’m lost at a show grounds and can’t figure out where to go. The funniest one involved me shopping at a really oddly laid out Jo Ann’s fabric for stock tie material, from which I had to then make my stock tie, no more than 45 minutes prior to my ride time.
Even in these dreams I’m like “this is ridiculous! This is completely ridiculous! I would never do that!” Sometimes I don’t wake myself up*, just to see what my idiotic dream self is going to do with the situation.
Most recently I dreamed that I was XC schooling with friends (a very particular group and I knew all the friends and horses, and that part alone was fascinating!). We were having a lovely time schooling until we got to a funny table that is present on the Camelot XC course (though we weren’t schooling at Camelot at the time; not sure where we were).
This table, to be exact. And it’s bigger than it looks, seriously.
The table was placed on a funny downhill-ish approach, and all of our horses were having trouble with it — everyone had stops. So we went back up the hill a bit to re-approach. First, my RBF went to it, and instead of jumping it she somehow ended up laying face down on the jump, planking it (like the fad, not the exercise). She wasn’t hurt, though her horse was nowhere to be seen. We walked up to her and asked what had happened, and she said “Oh, I thought I’d try something new as we came up to the fence.”
I personally will not be trying that particular new thing any time soon!
If you have weird horse dreams, I wanna hear them!
* Throughout this post I’ve mentioned waking myself up from dreams, which is something I’ve always been able to do, and until my late teens didn’t realise not everybody could do. It’s as awesome as it seems, but as far as superpowers go, it’s pretty weak overall.