Monday, February 20, 2017

PERCHANCE TO -----


You may have heard about this recently in the news.

It was really quiet.  Quiet  is unusual in my house as I have tinnitus so there is usually a background noise of some sort to distract me from the ringing in my ears. Music preferably but often some unwatched show on TV softly droning away does the trick.  This time however it was just me and the jangly ears.

It was late and I was just putting the computer and myself to bed when I heard a sinister growl coming from the living room. Callie is not a growler, at least not normally. She may annoy a stranger away with her incessant enthusiasm but a guard dog she is not.

The growling however deepened and grew  more threatening. I was alarmed.  In case you have wondered, I am not a defenseless old lady.  I am armed and a decent shot. I stealthily retrieved the revolver from my bookcase headboard and as quietly as possible, pulled the hammer back.

My heart was pounding as I grabbed the bedroom door knob and slowly opened the door just a crack. I saw nothing even though the nightlights made all but the darkest corners visible.

Callie growled once more only this time she ended with a sharp bark. I looked for her and saw her prone on the couch, eyes closed and feet paddling spasmodically  as she either was running towards or away from the threat. My protector was dreaming.

My relief laugh woke her up.  Halfways raising her head, she gave me a bleary eyed questioning look. "Huh?"

OK, maybe that didn't actually make the news---but it did happen.

All of us who have shared our lives with a dog, know of their episodes of
dream running and talking while sleeping. It got me wondering however--do we humans twitch and paddle our feet when walking or running in our dreams?

My recurring stress dream always involves walking for miles. Usually it is because in  my dream scenario my old red 1978 Volkswagen bug has just been stolen.  I always have to walk miles looking for that little car. Oddly these dream walks never tire me, even when I dream walk 10 miles or so.  I started wondering if my feet paddle dog-like during these marathon sleep walks and jogs.

When I was in relationships, it was something I never thought to ask. Now that I live alone, I have no one to ask. So I will ask those of you who do share your bed.  Do yours or your spouse's feet twitch like a dog's when you sleep run, hike or walk??   Just curious and for the sake of science, I thank you.

40 comments :

  1. Wow,I would have been sweating bullets! You were brave to open that door. Imagine if you had called 911 :-)

    No feet movement during sleep that my hubby or I are aware of. However, I will note that when I dream about walking or running, it almost always involves walking or running quickly away from some dangerous situation. And, my feet ((in my dream) will not move the way I want them to. It is almost like they are bricks.

    As a side note, I always wanted a VW bug, but never managed to get one. I remember my dad talking me into a sensible Rambler!

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    1. Carole,
      Oddly I never thought of 911-thank goodness. I know what you mean about those lead feet. When I am walking in my dreams though it is effortless. Aren't those bugs the best? I waited till I retired to get one and have it restored. I sold it before I moved here and miss it a lot. They make me smile every time I see one.

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  2. I share my bed with Slim and Frankie...my two BMC (Black Mouth Curs). In a home invasion they would both lick the burglar to death.

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    1. Annie,
      Ha ha, I see you are as protected as I am. At least they will divert the bad guy for a bit.

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  3. Interesting question. I don't ever remember Roger (or my first husband) moving or running while they dreamed. I have dogs who paddle and run in their sleep, but never growl. That is really surprising behavior. You are certainly ready for anything! (About tinnitus, I have it too, and it totally bums me out. And my favorite car was my 1966 Volkswagen Bug with a sunroof. I drove that thing across country and loved every minute of it!)

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    1. robin,
      I can just see you in that sunroof seeing the USA. They were the coolest cars ever. I really miss mine. They made a lot of people happy in their heyday.

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  4. The answer is no, humans do not usually move about while they are dreaming. The exceptions would be those who are given to sleep disturbances. Here is a link to an article about why. https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/07/120711131030.htm

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    1. Lisa,
      Thank you for the link. That explains the lead feet when trying to get away in a dream. My ex husband had a sleep disorder and he was a very violent sleeper. He would hit me and kick me out of the bed and know nothing about it in the morning. Separate beds helped.

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  5. Mrs. C. has what we call "jimmy legs" at night. She sometimes licks me awake and then feels terrible about it. So far she hasn't commented on me doing anything similar.

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    1. Stephen,
      She sounds like she has a milder version of what my ex- husband had. Wonder if hers is that restless leg syndrome. Good luck.

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  6. LOL I can tell when hubby is still at work--in his dreams. I'm glad Callie was just dreaming and the threat wasn't real--and you were prepared to defend yourself. I imagine that was quite a relief.

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    1. pattisjarrett,
      Ha ha, I hope he likes his job and yes it was a relief.

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  7. I love those bugs too. Got my own first red one in 1969. Before that I drove my Mom's.
    As for movement of limbs, healthy humans have a centre in the brain that actually makes us motionless so we do not hurt ourselves thrashimg about. Still there may be some twitches and sleep talking in some people. My hubby does both. So does my cat.

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    1. Heidrun,
      Weren't they just the best little cars? I smile every time I see one. Hum, I haven't seen my cat do that yet. I'll watch her now.

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  8. Bud learned many things while he was in the Army. He learned to give & receive orders, how to deal with neurotic superior officers & how to care for & fire a weapon. (Since he was a Finance Officer, he was required to sleep with a loaded .45 on the nightstand next to him when the payroll was in. He tossed & turned in his sleep so I learned to stay awake those nights.) He had to attend many lectures, so he considers the most important thing he learned was how to sit up, keep his eyes open & hold a pen--all while sleeping!!

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    1. Fran,
      Yikes, that had to have been a bit scary having the gun so available. I keep mine in a zippered bag. Had to laugh at his fake awake. I had a boss like that. We could never tell when he was in his office if he were awake or asleep.

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  9. I think humans are pretty much paralyzed when they are in deep REM sleep. However, I think lighter modes of dreamland can produce some mumbling and twitching. My littlest grandchild (4) really talks in his sleep and moves around the bed a lot, too. I guess this happens when he's not in a really deep sleep. Sleeping in the room with him isn't restful!

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    1. Barb,
      Ha ha, might not be restful but he has to be entertaining.

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  10. I did not guess dog dreaming.
    As far as I know neither I or my partner dream walk.

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    1. Linda R,
      Don't feel badly. I threw in the red herring about the news story to confuse. A little "fake news" to throw folks off.

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  11. enjoyed so much this very interesting indent !

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  12. I have very vivid dreams but I don't think I move much while dreaming. I know what you mean about those legs running in dogs, though. You brought back some old memories of dogs I have known and loved over the years. Glad it wasn't a real threat. I have occasional tinnitus and am glad it's not constant like yours is. Love the way you write, Patti. :-)

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    1. Djan,
      Thank you so much. Glad you enjoy. They are fun to watch in dream state aren't they? I think Callie was facing something bigger than a rabbit in her dream to make her growl. Usually she just runs and yips.

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  13. Except for the gun part I can sure relate to this post! My dog frequently wakes me up with his dreams. I wondered enough once about whether or not I talked my sleep that I set a tape recorder and found out the dog jumps in and out of bed a lot during the night. I could hear his tags jangling.

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    1. Jean R,
      Thank you for stopping by and commenting. Funny with the tape recorder. Guess you didn't hear yourself talking:))

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  14. Our Lucy sleeps in a crate at night and is quite restless. Many times I've walked in to make certain she isn't having a seizure but just dreaming. We once had a Springer that would awaken us occasionally with a loud and mournful howl. It woke the household (even the ones upstairs) but the dog did not awaken.

    LOL at the vision of you in your nightie totin' that pistol.

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    1. Carolyn,
      Ooh that Springer howling would have been weird. Our pets do affect our sleep don't they?
      Ha ha, pretty sure I wasn't very intimidating with my white hair and pistol.

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  15. This is my first visit to your blog and what a funny post. Callie the big, bad watch dog. I can see the two of you now, you with your gun and Callie paddling away on the couch. :)

    I started walking and talking and moving my arms in my sleep a few years ago. It's crazy time around here when I do it.
    Thanks for the smile!

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    1. bellarum,
      Thank you so much for stopping by and commenting. It did make me laugh when I saw she was sleeping.
      Goodness, I'll bet you do create a stir when you get wound up.

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  16. I always envied people who had dreams (not nightmares though). Now in my seventies and on too many meds I have them occasionally now. Sometimes also caused by my hot blooded spouse who throws the covers off and I awake with frozen feet after dreaming of being trapped in a Minnesota blizzard....

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    1. TB,
      Sorry it took meds to give you dreams but I hope most are pleasant. Think I would go to bed with wool socks if I were you. That borders on a nightmare:)

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  17. I will have night tremors and wake myself up. However, my husband wakes me with his leg sliding back and forth. He gets restless leg syndrom and it drives me nuts.
    Lisa

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    1. Lisa,
      I have heard of night tremors--doesn't sound like fun. Sounds like you could both could use some shin guards.

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  18. I have tinnitus, too. It drives me nuts sometimes and other times I guess I'm just used to it. Have had it ever since my dad bought me a .38 to carry when I was out alone and after being followed home by some unknown man. I think I blogged about that one time. Anyway, I still have that gun but it is WAY too loud and after I shot it, I think that's about the time my ears started ringing.
    I think my hubby still dreams about the Hamburger Hill battle in Vietnam. He moans, groans and talks some in his sleep while flailing his arms. Not all the time, but often enough that it makes me happy when he falls asleep in his recliner! I do remember our dogs doing much like Callie with the feet moving like they were chasing something in their sleep. So funny!

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    1. Cheryl,
      I am sorry your hubby has such active dreams. It has to be hard for you both. Hope he doesn't hurt you. My ex use to bruise me pretty good in his sleep till we got separate beds.
      Tinnitus is annoying isn't it?

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  19. Faith sleeps with me, so I know she is busy running after rabbits in her dreams. But I have never heard her growl, she just makes funny whiny noises. Noises she never makes while awake. Errol didn't snore, which was so great. But guess what... Samson comes in the bedroom once the heater goes off and he snores, big time!

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    1. Inger,
      Ha ha, snoring dogs are so funny--well unless the wake you up out of a sound sleep. I had a Pekineses that often entertained my company with his raucous snoring.

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  20. I thought I had left a comment, but maybe I did not click right. Here it is: Since you asked – yes, my husband moves his feet and legs while asleep. He also speaks loud and has tremors in his legs. Since I need knee operations my knees are very painful and now have to sleep in a separate bed to avoid his hitting them. He is in the “middle” stages of Alzheimer’s though (and was diagnosed in 2009.) Lately he believes his dreams are reality and will come and wake me up at 2 or 3 am asking where all the people are. It is very tiring considering that taking care of him 24/7 without help is uber stressful. I don’t remember him moving his feet years ago, it started around 2007 (Alzheimer is a slow growing illness.) Our 50th anniversary is next June, but he won’t know.

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  21. Vagabonde,
    Wow, you really have your plate full and not getting sleep must be exhausting. My ex husband was a violent sleeper and we had to get separate beds it got so bad. I do hope you find a solution where you can get some rest. My heart goes out to you.

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