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Oneirodynia

Nightmares aren't always pitch black. Sometimes, they're a soft milky white.

By Dharrsheena Raja SegarranPublished about a month ago Updated about a month ago 5 min read
Top Story - June 2024
Photo by Kristina Nor on Pexels https://www.pexels.com/photo/woman-in-white-shirt-taking-bath-on-white-water-3230267/

“And you’ve had the same nightmare for eight years now?!”

“No, not really. The theme of my nightmares had always been the same, but the gruesomeness of it increased over the years,” explained Haydari.

“Okay, spill everything! I can’t believe that you’ve never told me about this!” Calista was incredulous.

Haydari dreaded this moment. She had never confided in her best friend, let alone anyone, or even sought professional help because she didn’t even know how to talk about something like this.

Her nightmares had gotten so bad over the years, which caused her to lose a lot of sleep.

Her chronic lack of sleep had rendered her incompetent at work, and she got fired today. She called Calista up and went straight to her house to vent.

“I know, I know, and I’m sorry for keeping it from you. Okay, I’ll spill, but heads up, you might find these nightmares gross and very disturbing,” warned Haydari.

“There is nothing that I would judge you for, especially for something that you have no control of.”

Haydari sighed and shrugged, “Oh well, if you say so. The first of these nightmares that I can remember vividly was of me eating an ice cream at the mall, and I saw the lifeguard drowning. Don’t ask me how he was drowning at the mall, but he was and I wanted to help him.”

“Okay, go on,” Calista prompted as she saw the hesitation in Haydari’s eyes.

“You were there and I told you to hold my ice cream, but you refused because you claimed that the ice cream was made with breast milk and you didn’t wanna touch it.”

“Sorry, but what milk?”

“Breast milk. You know, like the milk from the breast of a woman.”

“I know what breast milk is!” Calista was repulsed by this revelation, but she didn’t show it, “So what happened after that?”

“I turned to look at the ice cream man from whom I bought the ice cream. There were so many women squirting their milk into jugs and handing them to him. He would hit them hard if they slowed down.

“When I woke up, I was so grossed out. I couldn’t eat ice creams ever since. I couldn’t even look at pregnant or breastfeeding women the same anymore!”

“So that’s why you don’t eat ice creams! I knew that you were not lactose intolerant so I assumed you were mentally retarded because who in their right mind wouldn’t wanna eat ice cream?!” Calista guffawed at her own joke.

Haydari rolled her eyes.

“I’m sorry, I couldn’t help myself,” Calista grinned sheepishly, “So, from then onwards, you’ve been dreaming about ice cream daily?”

“Oh no! The theme of my recurring nightmares is breast milk and it’s always so disturbing. It came to the point where I was so afraid to go to sleep but I had no choice. I would always wake up perspiring though, at 3.00 a.m.”

Calista looked up at the clock on her wall, “Would you look at that? It’s 3.00 a.m.!”

Haydari knew that it wasn’t 3.00 a.m. She could see that it was still bright outside Calista’s windows.

Photo by Karolina Kaboompics on Pexels
https://www.pexels.com/photo/two-women-sitting-while-talking-on-a-sofa-6135180/

When she brought her focus back to Calista, what she saw made her jump up from the couch like a frightened cat. Calista was squirting her breast milk into a bowl of ice cream!

Everything went dark and Haydari couldn’t see anything. She was hyperventilating. After a few minutes, she realised that she was in bed, in her room.

Another nightmare.

She was supposed to meet Calista the next morning to vent about getting fired and confide about her nightmares but she had been feeling very anxious and afraid of how Calista might feel or react.

Her fear must have manifested as a nightmare but it still involved breast milk, like it always did, for as long as she could remember.

Although she knew it would be 3.00 a.m., she still checked the time on her phone. She was right.

After a few hours of tossing and turning, she somehow managed to drift into an uneasy slumber with another nightmare where Calista kept laughing at her nightmares which then caused it to rain breast milk on both of them.

~~~~~

“Yes, you kept laughing at me and then we both got drenched in breast milk.”

“I don’t like the fact that I keep appearing in your breast milk dreams but I think you should see a psychiatrist regarding this,” propounded Calista.

“Yeah, maybe I should. Oh! I forgot to tell you about the nightmare that I had the night before last.”

“Ugh, don’t you think I’ve had enough breast milk from you to last me a lifetime? Oh Lord, that sounded so wrong!”

Haydari ignored her, “I was in a factory where women were kept in cages and there was a machine to extract milk from them. All of them looked as if they had been tortured very badly.

“The fates of their babies depended on their genders. If the baby was a boy, he would either be drowned or beaten to death. If it was a girl, she would be injected with hormones to have her reach puberty early and then be sent for artificial insemination so that they could start milking her.

“I stood there watching all these atrocities without being able to do anything. When I woke up, I realised that all of the women in my nightmares were actually slaves and were only being kept alive to be milked. They’d always be killed off once they reached menopause,” recounted Haydari.

“Flippin’ hell! That sounds awfully similar to the cruelty that happens in the dairy industry!” Calista pulled her phone out and typed away furiously, “Here, watch this.”

Haydari couldn’t believe what she was watching because one, it was very similar to whatever had taken place in her nightmares and two, because she had no idea that the dairy industry would be so barbaric!

She returned the phone to Calista as she couldn’t finish watching the video, “Does that mean my nightmares would stop if I stopped consuming dairy products?”

“What?! How’d you even make that connection?”

“I mean, think about it. You just helped me realize the similarities between my nightmares and the dark side of the dairy industry. That’s it! That’s the connection!” Haydari exclaimed.

“Hmmm, but it sounds so silly to think that abstaining from dairy products would stop your nightmares.”

“I won’t know unless I try. Tell you what, I’ll try it for a week and see if the nightmares reduce or stop. If they don’t, then I’ll make an appointment to meet a psychiatrist.

“Sounds good to me!”

“Hey, you’re a vegan!”

“Uh-huh, so?”

“You must know a lot of milk alternatives. What should I try?”

“Oh, I’ve got just the thing for you! I started this last month and have noticed colossal improvements in my health. I’ll give you a bottle of it to try. Just gimme a sec.”

Photo by Polina Tankilevitch on Pexels
https://www.pexels.com/photo/person-holding-bottles-with-milk-3735192/

Calista rushed to her kitchen before Haydari could respond and came back clutching a bottle.

“Here you go! Let me know if you like this and if it helped with your nightmares.”

“Thanks Cally, for letting me vent and for the milk. Speaking of which, what kinda milk is this?”

"It's breast milk!"

Haydari felt her brain shut down. She was catatonic. Was she dead? Was she in yet another nightmare?

“Ha! Gotcha! I was just kidding. Of course it's not breast milk. It's cockroach milk!”
__________________________________________

Screenshot from www.collinsdictionary.com
https://www.collinsdictionary.com/dictionary/english/oneirodynia

Author's Notes:

This story was written for Vocal's 3:00 AM Challenge. Apparently, cockroach milk is highly nutritious. The link below provides a lot of information about it. Would you try it? Let me know in the comments.

__________________________________________
Thank you so much for reading this! 🥰 If you liked my writing, please leave a comment, click the heart and subscribe for free!

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About the Creator

Dharrsheena Raja Segarran

My mental health decline brought about a lot of darkness and I embraced it. It now flows out mostly as Dark Stories and Poetry.

❤️ Erythrophile ❤️
✨️Glitteringly Savage✨️
🖤 Elegantly Disturbed Mind 🖤

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Comments (119)

  • Nathalie C.M. Sabbagh2 days ago

    Bravo! The connection between food and spirit is a powerful one. I did not expect this ending and I don't know how I feel about it haha. I have to now think about if I would ever try it. Congratulations on top story!

  • Denelsia Walker5 days ago

    This was scrumptious. You got me with that ending. 😂😂😂😂😂

  • This was absolute gold!!!!!!! And there is a ton of truth in this (including the very fact that dairy - especially cheese - does cause nightmares!!!!) I LOVE the awareness you are putting out there in this story… and honestly? This is soooo not horror as I see it! This is more like genuine NEWS!!!!!! ❤️❤️❤️❤️

  • Gina C.9 days ago

    Oh, how did I miss this!? Damn, this was frighteningly disturbing, lol! I have some crazy images in my head after reading this! 😅 It makes me think we're all in a simulation, chained up, being milked by the system while we dream 🫣 Awesome work, dear friend! Makes one ponder for sure ☺️

  • You might find this amusing... https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IA-asF0-7EQ

  • What an ending. There is such a thing as cockroach milk and it is coined as being an up-and-coming SuperFood because it is rich in nutrients. I like that your story is dialogue heavy. That way you are letting your characters tell the story instead of you telling the story with a narrative. Great work as always!

  • Blake Booth13 days ago

    Had no idea where this was going. Way to get us at the end. My stomach is totally uneasy.

  • Mariann Carroll13 days ago

    Great horror story, only you can turn breatmilk into a horror story 🤣Congrats on Top Story. It’s to see you writing more often than before ♥️

  • Congratulations on your top story . 🌹

  • Sheharyar Malik15 days ago

    amazing work!

  • Loryne Andawey16 days ago

    God, no, WHY? Can people just stop milking things for once? 😭. All horror aside, I missed your stories. Keep it up 👍

  • Cathy holmes16 days ago

    I know I read this a while ago, but there was no heart. There is now.

  • C. H. Richard17 days ago

    Oh my word! I have missed your horror stories. I hope I do not have a nightmare. You are right about the dairy industry but I don't think I could drink cockroache milk 😳

  • Wow! You're Amazing Dharrsheena! Great story! Congratulations on TS too.! Best!

  • Cyrus23 days ago

    Great work!

  • Dr. Jason Benskinabout a month ago

    Congratulations on having your story featured as a top story on Vocal! This is a remarkable achievement, and it's clear why your work has received such recognition. Your storytelling is truly exceptional. The narrative was not only compelling but also beautifully crafted, holding my attention from start to finish. The way you developed the characters and plot was masterful, making the story both engaging and thought-provoking. Your unique voice and perspective shine through, setting your work apart. It’s evident that you poured a lot of passion and effort into this piece, and it has certainly paid off. I look forward to reading more of your incredible stories in the future. Keep up the fantastic work! Best regards, Dr. Jay

  • ED CLEFF about a month ago

    Your stories are mind blowing , how I wish I could have a one on one conversation with you. Awesome work keep the fire burning !!!

  • Alohan I Rowlandabout a month ago

    Wow this is so interesting and come to think of it I even wrote a song about this same issue of breast milk is really a concerned truth

  • Jade Losonabout a month ago

    This was creative! At least it was considered as a nightmare and not a dream 😂 Well done!

  • Sian N. Cluttonabout a month ago

    Wow, Dharrasheena. This is a brilliant read! I love how it repeated in different ways; very lifelike. It also made me giggle! I like a touch of humour in my horror!

  • Dee Menorah about a month ago

    Congratulations on top story

  • Ainy Abrahamabout a month ago

    Just forgot to congratulate you on your top story. Stay blessed.

  • Ainy Abrahamabout a month ago

    This is an excellent horror story. A dream with the same theme is not easy to tolerate and digest. Nightmares can be over but not the ones we face during day time. I would never try the cockroach milk. YYYYYaaaaaaaaakkkkkkkkkkkhhhhhhhhhhh

  • Roberto Humerezabout a month ago

    I really thank you for subscribing to me and I see you are a real example of expression. I am only starting this and hope to be heard! because this is exactly why Vocal. is made for.... I believe to be heard because each and everyone's voice count.

  • Lilyabout a month ago

    I loved it! I will think about this every time I eat some ice cream now haha

Dharrsheena Raja SegarranWritten by Dharrsheena Raja Segarran

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