Saturday, October 07, 2017

Déjà vécu


When Jayden awoke, he found himself in a hospital room. He didn't remember how he got there. He wasn't in pain. Wasn't injured. Had no surgical incisions. The hospital was eerily quiet. He walked down the hallway, but the hospital was deserted. He went outside, but the streets were deserted. He didn't remember what happened after that.


Jayden found himself hiking with his son Xavier. He didn't remember what happened before then. They were climbing a hill. When they reached the summit, there was a was a mountain range in the distance. They started down the hill, towards a stream. He didn't remember what happened after that.


Jayden found himself on the football field of his old high school. He was coaching a player named Xavier. It was a crisp autumn day, with colorful trees surrounding the field, as well as leaves littering the track. He didn't recall what happened after that.


Jayden found himself in a barbershop. He didn't recall how he got there. Ava, a middle-aged beautician, was cutting his hair. He felt like he'd known her for a long time. 


Jayden found himself at a Thanksgiving meal at his mother's home. His mother Ava was busy in the kitchen, while he was talking to his brother Jordan in the front yard, facing the river. The sun was low on the horizon. He didn't remember driving there.


Jayden was driving on the expressway. He didn't recall where the trip began. The expressway was lined with familiar motels and exits he'd seen so many times before along that stretch of highway. He felt that he was heading home, although, as he thought about it, he didn't recollect where home was. He was driving back by force of habit–like he'd done this many times before. In the passenger seat was his wife Debbie. 


Jayden woke up in the bedroom of his college dorm. His roommate, Jordan, was seated upright in bed, typing on his laptop. Jordan was his best friend from high school. Jayden was pondering what to do next, but he didn't remember what happened after that. 


Jayden found himself sitting in a pizzeria, talking to a pretty waitress named Debbie. He sensed having had this conversation before. He had a foreboding that this would slip away as abruptly as it began. 


Jayden found himself sitting in an empty church. One of those churches that's open during weekdays so that people can visit the sanctuary to pray and mediate. He was flipping through the hymnal. 

Jayden couldn't shake the feeling of déjà vécu, like he was trapped inside a recurring dream, or circuit of dreams. Only he never really woke up. Every time, he woke up in the dream rather than waking up from the dream. A merry-go-round of dreams, where he kept reliving the same episodes, in no particular order. He could remember just enough to recall having done it all before, but he couldn't remember when it began–or if it began. He kept meeting the same people–or were they the same people? They had the same names. Same faces. Like a parallel universe. 

What was real? What was happening to him? Was he losing his mind? Or tripping out on LSD? Perhaps he suffered traumatic brain trauma from an accident. This was his delirium, as he frantically struggled to become fully lucid. Like a diver swimming towards the sunlight, but every time he's just about to surface, he sinks back. 

It had been going on for much too long to be a dream. He remembered it happening over and over again. Or did he? Maybe his memories were part of the hallucination–if that's what it was. The fact that he kept encountering the same people suggested that he knew them in the real world–whatever that was. He felt like an amnesiac groping to piece his life together, hoping to tap into some association that would suddenly bring it all back. Maybe in the real world, his body was sedated, with simulated imagery feeding into his mind through a neurointerface. 

He looked again at the hymnal in his hands. He knew this scene would vanish. He'd been there before. He'd been there again, sitting in the same spot, holding the hymnal open to the same page. 

He hadn't been very pious when all this began, assuming it had a beginning. Maybe it was like a Möbius strip, forever circling back on itself, without a starting-point or destination. But in his maddening ordeal, the only thing that kept him centered was the dawning realization that even if nothing else was real, God had to be real. If it was a recurring dream, that existed in God's reality. If it was an acid trip, that existed in God's reality. If it was a parallel universe, that existed in God's reality. If it was a computer simulation, that existed in God's reality. 

Only God could penetrate his experience. God was the only thing outside his experience that was able to reach into his experience. So God was the only realty he could reach from inside the illusion. And only God could connect him to his loved ones, whom he kept meeting and losing, meeting had losing. 

1 comment:

  1. very pleasantly surprised to see a new where dreams come true story