It was a long night, what with dodging lava flows one minute and canoeing through a maze of little cottages the next.
And when I woke up, my dreams had brought me a new appreciation for my realities.
There really wasn’t lava surrounding my house, forcing a decision on whether to abandon it for safety or stay and find higher ground somewhere inside. There was only water seeping in from the ice dams and snow on our roof. Same feeling, less urgent.
There really wasn’t a need to find my friends via canoe to bid them goodbye after realizing we’d spent a vacation enjoying people rather than sights. There was only the reminder that I’d been reading how social connections bring more happiness to people than much else. Same feeling, less actual.
It’s been years since my husband and I read about interpreting dreams Р long enough that I don’t remember the source or the rationale. I only remember the theory, because it has proved itself true over and over and over.
Here it is:
Dreams are not usually about the people or the events our minds invent while we’re asleep so much as they are about the emotions.
What was the feeling? Is it an emotion I’m experiencing when awake?
We all remember those early dreams of getting to school and realizing we had forgotten an item of clothing Р usually a pretty important one. Perhaps these come because of a worry we will forget something, or perhaps because of a worry that people will see something of us that we don’t want them to see.
I call that an exposure dream. I still get them, though with a slightly different twist you don’t want to know about. I get them when I’m about to share something Р perhaps some personal thoughts in writing Р that may be criticized; thoughts that expose something inside me that people may not understand or accept.
There are the rejection dreams: Dreams of an old flame once again turning away. Dreams that bothered me at first because I really was over the relationship. Then I noticed those dreams came when a book proposal was turned down or an idea was shunned Р rejections.
Others have said they too have those missing-the-flight dreams where you never quite make that connection or the plane never quite gets off the ground Р anxiety over something anticipated.
It’s not something you ate, it’s more often something you’re feeling deep down.
My efforts to keep a dream journal lasted only a few days last year. There’s a reason most are forgotten right away and I decided not to override what nature had already taken care of.
But those dreams that are still remembered at morning just may remain in our minds long enough to tell us something about ourselves that might be good to know.
Having a little insight into what happens at night can bring a little light to the realities of the day.