29 September 2007

Dream a little dream

What did you dream last night?

Everyone does it. Some people as few as 3 a night, some as many as 7. Not everyone remembers their dreams, and most people only remember one or two a night.

Some mornings I remember the surroundings in my dreams with perfect clarity. Who, where, what we were doing, down to the feel of the carpet under my feet and the scent of the dirty dog laying at my feet. The details are there, but without meaning - I don't remember why I was doing whatever I was doing.

Then there are the dreams where I wake feeling like I've been through an emotional wringer. Loss, anger, despair, or more rarely utter bliss and joy - I feel them, but have only the briefest flash of actual dream that goes with it. These dreams aren't much fun - if I'm going to wake up feeling like my world is coming to an end, I'd at least like to know what made me feel that way.

The biggest theme in my dreams is that I'm not me. If I have kids, they aren't the ones I feed, care for, and love in my waking world. If I'm married, it's rarely to the man snoring next to me now. My house isn't the same four walls, and often when I wake up I realize that there's not a thing from my dream that seems like my real world.

I spent a bit of time checking out Dream Moods to see if I could get a better grasp on my dreams and what they mean. It was reassuring to see that it's not unusal to dream of being someone else, and that just because my husband and kids don't make frequent appearances it doesn't mean I don't think they're important - more likely, it's a sign that I'm not worried about them. Our dreams are very self centered places where our subconscious plays our concerns; the ego gets free reign to explore its worries.

I'm not sure that I agree that dreaming of despair "signifies that you will have many hardships and experience much cruelties in the working world." Unless having to watch Trollz for the thirtyteenth time is certifiably cruel.

Dreaming of dogs is even more confusing. It could "indicate a skill that you have ignored or forgotten, but needs to be activated." Or, it could "symbolize intuition, loyalty, generosity, protection, and fidelity." There's no explanation of the stinky part, so I'm going out on a limb and projecting that my dog needs a bath. My nose confirms the theory.

Do you remember your dreams? And do you wonder what they mean when you do?
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