Dream Analysis/Interpretation by Dream Analyst
Gerald Gifford {at Forum #1}

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Uphill, downhill, settling

This is a section of a dream that is the only one I recall. I am trudging up a hill, carrying a black trash bag (full but very light to carry). At times the hill is just dirt; other times there are a few steps with a handle or short railing to pull myself up. When I get to the top of the hill, the downhill is very very steep and it looks dark, wet and muddy at the bottom. I go down the hill but now I don't have the garbage bag or any steps, handle or railing. I get to the bottom and as I look forward I see sort of a tunnel (like a mine) and feel that it's the wrong way to where I want to go. I turn around and end up at the top of the hill again but I didn't have to walk up the hill to get there. Once at the top, I am lying down on the hill with the very steep downhill sides on either side of me. The dirt under me starts to soften and settle, almost becoming like sand (vs. hard clay or dirt as before). The hill is flattening as the sifting progresses. As it does, I feel enveloped and almost rocked and soothed. The dream goes on but I don't remember any further.

Age & Gender & Location {Required}: 56 yrs and GA

Have You Posted Before? Date of Last Post {Use Search and Your Post Name to Help Find Last Post} Female

How Did You Find the Dream Forum? yes

Re: Uphill, downhill, settling

Lisa,
My sense is the up and down is your state of emotional mind. Emotionally 'up' one moment, down the next. Positive aspects driving you one day, negative aspects controlling the next. The black bag would symbolize unconscious contents, the trash those things you may reject or refuse to acknowledge. You are carrying a lot of emotional 'baggage' that on the surface {conscious} is less that you might think. But underneath, in the unconscious, there is more to bare, more to the conscious experiences than you may want to believe {I refer back to your previous post Apartment Changing, Mean Animals}.
There does seem to be some reluctance to accept some aspects of this conscious conflict {Refusal to go into the tunnel, a connection of unconscious to consciousness}. It may be there is a 'shifting' in your thinking or approach to this emotional issue. The change of attitude is positive. It will remove much of the conflict that is causing the upheaval in your emotional life.

Jerry

Age & Gender & Location {Required}: 60 Murfreesboro, Tn

Have You Posted Before? Date of Last Post {Use Search and Your Post Name to Help Find Last Post} Male

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Re: Uphill, downhill, settling

Gosh I wish I knew myself better. Since this dream and seeing "Eat, Pray, Love", I've busied myself with straightening my office, throwing things out, replacing an ugly plant, obsessing about organizing the small kitchen, making it homey. Having a "project" has always seemed to make me feel more fulfilled. Maybe I need to make ME a project. Just not quite sure how to do that. I'd sure like to find that soft, comforting, secure spot at the top of that hill that is flattening (evenening out)though. Thanks for your input. I wish I could put my finger on what you are referring to as "this emotional issue" unless it is my friend in NH.

Age & Gender & Location {Required}: 56 yrs and GA

Have You Posted Before? Date of Last Post {Use Search and Your Post Name to Help Find Last Post} Female

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Re: Uphill, downhill, settling

Lisa,
"Maybe I need to make ME a project."
That is most likely what you do need to do. But the 'Me' needs to be in line with the inner self and not the outer ego desires. Those aspects are only temporal. Changes within, focusing on the inner self, are the changes needed to insure real balance and harmony. Perhaps it is the time to get involved with a project having to do with creative aspects and let the material world aspirations go. I sense this has been an on-going routine for a long time, putting too much energy into the ego/material world and not enough into the inner world of emotional reconciliation and creative resources.

That 'soft, secure spot' you are looking for will come from within. It begins with a thorough examination of your psychological being. The emotional issues may very well be the accumulative experiences in your life. Have you taken time to reconcile your past? My impressions of your first dream post, Apartment Changing, Mean Animals, about how it fit someone at a much earlier age, makes me want to think there has been too much emphasis on the outer self and too little investigation of the inner life. By the time one reaches their mid to late 50s there should have been such a reconciliation of those inner resources, if such a thing is to happen at all {too many dwell in the 'wasteland' and never realize the virtues of the inner self}.

Going back to your statement "I am certainly void of emotion toward my current boyfriend from HS and it is bothering me a lot". HS was a long time ago and reuniting with your bf from the past, perhaps that is the stimulus that finally gets you to begin to reconcile all the accumulative emotions that have built up over a life time. 'Going back', literally with your bf, and figuratively with your own psychological being, may be where you need to focus your energies.

Jerry

Age & Gender & Location {Required}: 60 Murfreesboro, Tn

Have You Posted Before? Date of Last Post {Use Search and Your Post Name to Help Find Last Post} Male

How Did You Find the Dream Forum? Yes

Re: Uphill, downhill, settling

Thanks Jerry. Interesting about bf but difficult to keep that going (his issues then are the same today and not something I can accept...addiction being one). Meanwhile, I posted another dream on Dec. 17th entitled "Opposite Water Temperature". I wonder how you would now interpret the three posts with that one included but I'm asking alot while I'm learning so much from your website (the Self, Animus, Shadow). Second question, is posting a dream from ten years ago relevant to my self exploration today? I may be late into this process but my genes have long life history so with 30+ yrs left, I think it's worth the time investment. Something tells me you'd agree wholeheartedly with that!

Age & Gender & Location {Required}: 56 yrs and GA

Have You Posted Before? Date of Last Post {Use Search and Your Post Name to Help Find Last Post} Female

How Did You Find the Dream Forum? yes

Re: Uphill, downhill, settling

Lisa,
Here is that dream posted December 2009. Let's look at it again, this time with added info about you that may shine a light on the possibilities.

I am on vacation with my family and my financially poor boyfriend is with me. We're at Lake Michigan and I am worried about the expense of the trip when my father announces that he is picking up the entire tab. I am greatly relieved. Later, my brother and I wade into Lake Michigan and the water is very warm (which it never is even in August..there's always a chill to get used to). Then, we jump into the nearby swimming pool and the water is ice cold. How do I interpret that the water temperature is the opposite of what is real?

The reference to your 'financially poor bf' is probably actual waking sentiments, but with his {bf's} financial condition being what it is today. The trip may be an inward journey since there is a large body of water involved {large bodies of water usually symbolizing the deeper unconscious}. Underneath it all you are worried about the cost, not just financial but emotional. Perhaps taking in your old bf from the past is as much in emotional conflict as is the actual cost financially {does he need support, financially as well as emotionally?}.

Your father paid the tab. This may be going back to earlier experiences in life {during high school years}. Were there instances where your father did have to pay the tab, involving not only financial aspects but also emotional?

The warm water may be related to expectations, perhaps a hopeful desire of restarting the flame from the past with your bf. But the reality is different, the water {emotions} are ice cold. The expectations were not real. Perhaps nothing really has changed from the past, your bf is at the center of the emotional conflict. Were there problems then involving your father? Reviving the old relationship could be reviving old emotions that were hidden deep within the unconscious, forgotten over time.

The financial situation involved in this dream would fit with someone who has always given a lot to the importance of material worth. Again I sense this is addressing personality traits. Have financial concerns been an important aspect of your life, not only in the past but in the present?

Jerry

Age & Gender & Location {Required}: 60 Murfreesboro, Tn

Have You Posted Before? Date of Last Post {Use Search and Your Post Name to Help Find Last Post} Male

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Re: Uphill, downhill, settling

My father footed the bill for the family as a whole but I'm not sure he "picked up the tab emotionally" in fact, he really wasn't available to me and I have had a hard time relating/trusting to men except on a business level since (until my HS bf resurfaced). I aligned more with my mother while my middle sister monopolized my father. We were also told to hush whenever emotions were attempted to be conveyed "we don't talk about such things". My mother was and is a penny pincher which I suppose I resent. My financial situation was quite stable, even lucrative, until my late 40s. I'm okay now but the HS bf would need financial support, particularly when his HepC progresses to a liver transplant, etc. (he's in stage 3 and continues to drink alcohol). Thus, my financial security is threatened by him, adding to emotional turmoil when I do love him and feel more secure and safe with him than anyone who came before. But, as you said at the Water Temperature dream, logic trumps emotion every time (you're right but that's hard). Please let me know if a ten-year old dream is relevant to my self exploration and thank you so much for everything you do in this site. Lisa

Age & Gender & Location {Required}: 56 GA

Have You Posted Before? Date of Last Post {Use Search and Your Post Name to Help Find Last Post} Female

How Did You Find the Dream Forum? Yes

Re: Uphill, downhill, settling

Lisa,
If not your father paying the tab, it is you who may be 'paying in the tab' because he was not available. Thus the problem with trusting men. I believe there is always an underlying stimulus for our actions as adults {they may not 'make ' us do things but they strongly lead us in a particular direction} and most often it comes from childhood. Emotional experiences in our youth make up who we are {read my post New Study-Our personalities may be set as early as 1st grade } and although consciously we are not aware of those early influences, unconsciously they are a force in who we become as adults.

As for the 'paying the tab', determining what actions made by whom is sometimes difficult to discern in dreams. But one continuing pattern that runs true is images of early life in a dream usually point to actual experiences during that time frame. Dreams are the resource provided by 'nature' to help us work through such negative experiences. Having difficulty with trusting men most likely can be traced back to those experiences with your father. Such experiences need not be 'traumatic' in form but merely a continuing influence at a time of life when the psyche is being developed and set for adulthood. Although the earliest years of life are most important, experiences throughout childhood and early life lead us to who we become as adults.

Then there is the 'hushing' of emotions early in life. Again a governing force in adulthood. Perhaps this is why there is a problem with accessing that inner self. Not being able to properly show emotions {controlling emotions, which I emphasis as a must in gaining balance in life, and having an emotional side are two opposites, one negative and the other needful} would be a product of influences during those early years also. And they govern your actions to a large degree as an adult.

All dreams are important, even the seemingly unimportant dreams. Dreams are therapeutic in they attempt to help resolve emotional conflicts. If you remember a dream for 10 years then the force behind that dream is so important, and the emotional experience so conflicting, there remains a need to resolve the underlying emotional aspects of the experience the dream is attempting to convey. Such experiences, as mentioned with your father and showing emotions, are the underpinning of who you are, your personality, your entire being. We all have issues and the more they are related to childhood the more likely they influence later life. Resolving those early life issues is where you need to begin. Just how to do that depends on you, your ability to understand and process the underlying influences. It takes a lot of time and effort, often years of effort {my own journey to wholeness started 18 years ago and real progress to understanding the childhood influences took about 12 years to remedy} to finally resolve the deep emotional influences.

The patterns of behavior that influence the individual are the stories of myth. Myths are the universal themes of emotional human behavior. Just as a psychologist can recognize a particular emotional pattern of behavior from study and experience, mythology also can provide clues to such underlying patterns of behavior. That is where the 'hero/heroine' motif becomes important. If nothing else this storied behavior provides us with information on how to become a 'hero' in our own lives, using the experiences of the hero as a pattern that leads us from our own darkest depths. The most important ingredient of the hero journey? DISCIPLINE. Discipline to stay the course in self discovery. That requires the recognition of the 'inner self', putting the ego in a place that does not have the greatest authority. Turning inward, removing yourself from concerns of material wealth and ego influence as the most important aspects in life. That is where the hero/heroine goes to find balance and harmony in life.

My caution about letting the objective self be in the lead is how I believe we must live in a world of reality. But the real world of emotions is to be found within and 'letting go' and trusting that inner self is where balance and harmony are to be discovered. Look at things in a realistic way but if you can slay in the ego dragon's influence {this is Jesus on the cross, representing the personal death and resurrection the individual must undertake to find new life} you then can learn to trust the emotions, trust the heart, and live life without the influences of past negative experiences.
A hard path to follow. One that requires great DISCIPLINE. A journey you must make alone, but one that does have helping hands to help lead you if you stay the path.

Jerry

Age & Gender & Location {Required}: 60 Murfreesboro, Tn

Have You Posted Before? Date of Last Post {Use Search and Your Post Name to Help Find Last Post} Male

How Did You Find the Dream Forum? Yes

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