Saturday, June 28, 2008

The Meaning of Dreams

So I was wondering what any of the folks who might read my blog think about the meaning of dreams. Throughout my life I have had various reoccurring dreams. When I was a young girl I used to have a very vivid dream of a Native American man coming through my Mum's window. In my mind I always thought he was there to hurt her and I would have this dream quite often. I remember waking up and going into my Mum's room to check on her. I think I would probably spend the rest of the night in her room but I can't quite remember and unfortunately can't ask her. My most recent reoccurring dream has been one of my Aunt May's home. I have been having this dream since her death in 1998. There have been many incarnations of the dream. Before I go into that I want to tell you about the significance of her home.

So as a young child I spent a good amount of time at her home in the city. My family lived near the cape in a rather small quiet town but the rest of my extended family lived in and around Boston. So going to the city always meant seeing family and usually meant extended time at A. May's(my mums eldest sister). Through a child's eyes her home was like a mansion. She had a beautiful wrap around covered porch in the front. As you entered her home there was an actual vestibule and then you walked into her front hall from which a beautifully grand, polished hardwood staircase would take you to the second floor. Off the front hall were two small sitting areas and a huge walk in closet. To the left of the hall was a living room that ran the width of the home. Two large crystal chandeliers hung from medallions in the ceiling. There were built in book shelves with a state of the art audio system. On the other side of the room was a wood burning fireplace with a lovely white mantle. Lovely furnishings and rugs decorated the room. It was a place for people to gather, visit and spend time talking singing and even eating. Exiting this living room near the fireplace you would enter a small formal dining room that housed a large dining room set that seated at least eight. There were also two buffets. Next to this room was the hub of the home. The kitchen. My memory is failing me as I can not remember if you entered the butlers pantry through a regular door and then the kitchen through a swinging set of shutters or vice verse. Either way it was a very unique entry into a tiny kitchen where inevitably we would always gather. Off the kitchen was a laundry/telephone room, the food pantry, the back door, the door to the back stair case and the hall to the bathroom. Just writing these descriptions down brings back so many memories. Anyway, I should tell you about the second floor as my dreams always end up there.

To reach the second floor you could of course go up the formal stair case or use the steep back stairs. Ascending the formal stairs would bring you to two landings. The second landing was home to a treasure trove of family photos as well as a bench. When you finally reach the second floor you come into an open space that could have been used as a living room or parlor but as I remember it was always empty except for some storage pieces at the far end of the room. Off this space could be found my Aunt's bedroom as well as the only full bath, a tv room that was once a bedroom, and two other bedrooms as well as a tiny work space where my Aunt worked as a stenographer. Whenever I would stay I would sleep in my Aunt's room in the second twin bed near the windows. This was the typical pattern until I was a much older teenager and could drive myself to my cousin's home in Norwood where I then would stay for visits.

This is the home I remember my Aunt in although it was not where she lived as she aged. The home became too big and expensive to keep up so finally she had to sell the house and move into a condo. I never saw her condo even though she lived there for several years. By that time I was much older and had married and was consumed with my own life. Before her death she was in a nursing home and I did see her there. In February of 1998 she passed away. I was pregnant with my first child.

So back to my dreams...as I said previously in this post I have had many dreams relating to my Aunt's home. In some dreams she is present but in most she is not. Some dreams are jovial and celebratory, but in others there is tremendous grief. Such was the dream I experienced last night. It began with her daughter and granddaughter(sons daughter) coming to pick me up from my home. They were dressed in long fur coats that completely enveloped them to the point that you couldn't make out the shape of their bodies. So as the dream continued we ended up in that side to side living room with other family members. It had the feeling of a holiday gathering of sorts. It was interesting that there were many people in the room yet when I awoke I didn't remember any specifics about others in the room. At one point in the dream I had this overwhelming feeling of grief. I made my way out of the room and over to the front stairs. It was like I was searching for something or someone. Then I climbed the stairs to the second floor. This is where my dreams always seem follow a similar pattern...the upstairs had been converted into an alternative health care facility. At this point in my dream I was crying. One woman offered her healing candles that she was making in one of the rooms. She even said it looked like I needed her product. Then I went into what was my Aunt's room. The room was different. It was done in warm neutrals and the lighting was dark. There was a Reiki table set up against one wall and a practitioner in the room using Tibetan singing bowls. At this point in my dream I was barely able to talk through my tears. Through the crying I asked "Do you do Reiki?" and at this point my own crying woke me from my dream. As I awoke I could feel the tears running down my cheeks. I could have balled at that moment but I took some cleansing breaths and went back to sleep. Tonight I called my cousin who grew up in that house and brought me there in my dream. Had to leave a message as she wasn't home. Sigh! I am making a commitment to myself to get back to Reiki. (hands on healing modality) A friend has found a new local practitioner who seems to be very intuitive. I think I'll save up some money and schedule a session with her.

So now that you have patiently read through my post I hope you might have some insight into this dream thing. Why do I keep having dreams about this house? It's been almost 10 years that I have been going through these dreams. What do you think?

2 comments:

Judy said...

What a fabulous house!!! I surely would have remembered it too if I had been there as a child. Perhaps you were so impressed by it that your subconscious still holds onto your thoughts and memories. Maybe you are sad too that you didn't have the opportunity to visit your aunt more often as you got older and married, and she moved on to other living arrangements. Maybe that is the sadness you feel in your dreams. And of course, she is you Mom's sister, and you miss your Mom terribly...so you can cry safely in your dreams. I don't know: just a guess.
I dream often about my maternal grandmother's home in Brockton. It was not nearly as grand as your aunt's, but when I was small, it seemed very large and wonderful to me. I also have very sad dreams about my father dying (he passed away in 1986) and I get very choked up. As I awaken from these dreams, I know that my father is still alive and it is just a dream, but then when I awaken fully, I know that I am wrong, and that he has in fact passed away.....so then I am really sad!! Dreams are so interesting!

xo

Ann said...

I've done a fair amount of dream work in various groups. From the Jungian perspective, the house is usually the self. This kind of work can't really be done in a forum such as this, but I think it's good that the "house" (self) in your dreams is one where there have been so many positive associations and feelings. Somehow the messages (you're in need of healing, for instance) and the emotions are very important. I think Judy has something when she talks about your grief for your mother. Of course you need healing! Lots and lots of other people and images in those dreams that need lots of meditation, journaling, and dialogue.

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