Nightmares are memorable. They are the stuff of conversation beside the water cooler or in the cafeteria, the next day.
Nightmares are inspirational. They can be fodder for stories we choose to write.
Nightmares are reminders. We are reminded that we are not immune to harm, illness, or injury, and when we awaken, we are relieved and thankful that it wasn't real.
Nightmares are motivational. They wake us up, warn us, give us a way out, and help us cope with reality.
I have awakened in the middle of the night many a time after having experienced a nightmare. I have battled with flaming and flying snakes, I have broken or lost my teeth, and I have been shot at...all within the safety of a dream. I have even been drowning in the deep end of a swimming pool only to awaken heaving to catch my breath. I suppose most people experience strange dreams from time to time, but how are these positive in our lives? After waking, I usually spend the next few minutes, or even hours, trying to solve the dream, trying to figure out alternate endings to it, or even trying to understand why my subconscious mind took me there in the first place. I even attempt to return to the same dream in order to see it through - to no avail, of course.
I really do believe, though, that the darker the nightmare - the stranger the tale being spun - the more I am reminded that my life is blessed. When I think about things for a little while, I realize that my life, with its ho-hum troubles and the stresses of family and career, is really not so bad after all. Perhaps that is what nightmares do: they remind us to appreciate what and who we have.