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two dreams

Dear Jerry,

I have not posted or visited your site much for quite awhile. For more than a year, I have been working with a really good psychoanalyst and getting some insight into my early life and how that has affected my current state of being. For the first many months of this work, I rarely had any dreams I remembered. But just since this summer I occasionally have a vivid dream, and in some way they seem more manageable than dreams I've had in past, in that the scene or the issue raised seems to be a single theme or solveable riddle instead of some unintelligible trailing narrative. I would like to know what you think about these two recent dreams.

In the first, I was at a meeting where someone I work with in real life (volunteer ski patrol/search and rescue) and respect very much was explaining to a small group of us a training scenario we were going to do. After he talked, we had to start gathering up equipment for the field, and first off, there were two piles of things we were to choose from to take with us. The first had backpacks and pack frames, and I found an old blue one which I owned since college days (for real) and had been serviceable and functional on many fine adventures. The second pile had furs which were apparently to be used as covers or blankets if we needed to sleep in the field. Everyone else selected theirs ahead of me, so when I got to it, all that was left was a poor skin with many holes and really not big enough to cover me. I was really worried about how I would be able to spend a night out in the snow and cold with this inadequate cover and I knew that I needed to do something else -- get something different than what was being provided, in order to meet my need.

In the second dream (just recently and some weeks later than the previous), I was checking in on a house that I still own but no longer lived in. I was with a couple of other people and I opened up the door with some trepidation since it had been a long time since I was last there and was unsure of what I might find. It all looked OK, just had that dry and dusty abandoned look, but then I spotted a small animal in the corner I assumed was a mouse. I immediately started figuring out how to trap and eradicate this mouse and any of its relatives that were certainly there too, but then noticed the animal was a squirrel. My companions and I started to try and corral the squirrel towards the door and out of the house, but the squirrel naturally went in all the wrong directions. But the squirrel did let me approach quite close and I felt I could catch it in my hands, though I knew that I should not do so because it would certainly bite. But it was too tempting and so I reached out with both hands, covering the top of its head and upper jaw with one hand to prevent it from biting, and with only minor bits of blood and fur shed from either party, soon had the squirrel calmed down between my hands. We then went outside to look for a safe place to release it. There was a boardwalk with stairs that was so steep below the house that there was nowhere we could get to the ground to put the squirrel down, so we went up the other way looking for a good patch of forest with soft dark soil, a bit of underbrush, and nice big trees. It was looking promising when I woke up.

As always, I will look forward to your insights.

Age & Gender & Location {Required}: 57

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: two dreams

Jaime,
I'll interpret the dreams separately just in case I do not have time to do both. I have a meeting to attend later and that my cut my time short.

The first dream
Receiving instructions for rescuing oneself due to particular emotional aspects. There are two necessary ingredients/possibilities for survival. One was where you would carry the burdens with you {backpack} which has limitations {pack frame}. In examining these burdens you have discovered associations to do with past experiences {old blue one} which contains ingredients that have been effective in working with your emotions in the past. There was a period of time {college days} where you were able to better cope with these burdens.

The second 'pile' is shielding yourself from the unconscious aspects {furs and blankets}, covering them {they return during sleep which contains elements good for personal growth {sleep in the field}. In that aspect of 'reflecting' you have fears of insufficient reasons to cover up your emotions. Instead you know you need to look for better ways to meet your emotional needs.

I see this dream as a part of your analysis in working to resolve the emotional issues that brought you to having a need for a 'good' psychoanalyst. There may also be fear of not fully resolving the issues which would put you back in the mold of being unconsciously controlled by these negative emotions {we all are in some way controlled by unconscious stimuli}. Your attention to your dreams help reflect your true self {at the time you have the dream}. This dream is working with those issues and reflects where you are in that process.

I see this as a positive dream. Through therapy {which I recommend for anyone with issues, beyond my help in working with their dreams} you are confronting the issues head on and no longer covering them up or ignoring/repressing them. Healing only begins when you know what the issues are and work to resolve them.

Question. Does your psychoanalyst ever use dream work in his/her therapy?

Jerry

Age & Gender & Location {Required}: 63 Space Coast, Fla.

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? Host Dream Forum

Re: two dreams

Jaime,
Here is my thoughts on your second dream.

You checking into a part of yourself {house} that is no longer a part of your conscious life {an unconscious aspect?}. You are working with dual forces/emotional conflict and are opening up to emotions with apprehension because it is something you have not confronted in a long time. You are not sure what you will find when working with these emotions. On first inspection it all looks fine but then small things, unpleasant emotions begin to appear. There are related issues to this particular fear you need to confront and eliminate as well. The more you examine the more you realize there are larger issues you have stored away {squirrel}. Attempting to work through these issues bring about conflicting results emotionally. You are afraid of the 'bite' these conflicts may inflict. The natural reaction {ego forces} is to find ways to prevent the emotional pain and you find this a temporary 'fix'. You have the ability to close yourself off from the emotions. But you have to consciously find a way to 'safely' release the emotional energies {going outside}. There are great depths to discovering the full extent of the emotional issues, unconscious aspects, and if left there would not let you resolve the larger issues {put the squirrel down}. Consciously you are looking for positive ways to confront the issues but there may be deep repressed aspects {stairs that was so steep below the house that there was nowhere we could get to the ground}. The patch of forest and nice big trees may have to do with conscious efforts to seek therapy. That would make things look promising.

The one part about this dream is the steep stairs that prevent you from getting to the ground {the foundations for your emotions and who you are}. Either there is something so traumatic, or something else blocking this access, or it was something that occurred when you were very young you would have no conscious memories of it {unconsciously it could be stored}. The last possibility would apply only if there were issues when you were a young child.

Jerry

Age & Gender & Location {Required}: 63 Space Coast, Fla.

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? Host Dream Forum

Re: two dreams

Hello Jerry,

Thank you for your thoughtful responses to both of the dreams I described in my last post. I am encouraged because in both of your interpretations you mentioned effects of me making conscious efforts to work through emotional issues. That is certainly a result of attending therapy for more than a year now where making these efforts is what it's all about. I am sometimes a reluctant student, but I keep going and when I am able to discover or glimpse some new truth I am willing to make more effort.

At the time I had those dreams I had not had a therapy session for about a month due to various circumstances. I did not take those two dreams all that seriously, I got hung up in the external images as usual. Then I returned to therapy and subsequently have had a series of much darker and more disturbing dreams which I believe is a result of being forced to confront the underlying issues more directly.

Now, having returned here and read your interpretation of those two previous dreams, it all is starting to make a lot of sense. I know from the therapy that there are deep underlying emotional issues but I so far have been unable to discover the origin of them. However, I am fairly well convinced that most of it is so far back in my early childhood that I have no conscious memory. This is partly what is making it hard for me to stay focused on the therapy, I believe. You mentioned me having the ability to close myself off from the emotions. Yes I have a lifetime of developing that, and many times I think that I am doing quite well, but then like that squirrel those underlying issues will crop up and bite sometimes. The squirrel image and its dream interpretation I find very amusing, but also true. One of the over-riding feelings I had that day after dreaming was of affection for this small, warm, furry animal that had finally decided to trust me. So is it that I have learned to tame (repress) the part of me that frightens me instead of letting it manifest its real (wild) nature?

I was interested that you focused on the steep stairs and the meaning of being unable to get at my own emotional foundations. Steep stairways that end in precipitous cliffs, broken off parts, or nowhere definite at all have been a recurring element in my dreams as long as I can remember. As a child I had a poem and drawing about Christopher Robin being halfway up (or down) a flight of stairs. The poem said he liked to sit there and think because he was neither up nor down, but in the drawing the stairs trailed off into nothing below him and I was fascinated by that image.

You asked if my therapist works with dreams. She is always willing to listen to me talk about them and will usually comment on their symbology and significance (she refers to some as "power dreams"). But that is not her primary focus, and that is OK with me too. For me, dreams are like signposts that show up at night, or in heavy fog or snowstorms. At those times they are very necessary, the only way you can tell if you're on the road. At other times, when it's clear or bright out there are other types of signs that we can and should be following. Anyway, I know that in my therapy session this coming week, I will be talking about dreams.

Peace and blessings.

Jaime

Age & Gender & Location {Required}: 57

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: two dreams

Jaime,
Thanks for the response. The depths for which your dream projects does seem to be something either repressed or so early in life there are no memories {children don't normally tend to have memories until age 4 or 5}. And although one or both of these conscious events may be true the unconscious 'knows'. If experiences are not imprinted on the psyche the energies that go with them are.

Your mention of Christopher Robin being halfway up (or down) a flight of stairs. that is likely where you are, stuck in mid levels. But if you stay with the therapy and pay attention to your dreams you will be able to descent to the great depths and uncover what it is that has control over your life. It is unfortunate that more therapists don't recognize the importance of dreams since dreams are a direct link to the unconscious. Many know of the possibilities that dreams can provide but few take time to learn indepth the language of dreams.

If you have other dreams you feel important post them and let me look at them. Don't be afraid to bring up the results with your therapist since what the dream provides may help her/him to recognize something they had not previously seen {if they are capable of doing so}. I am not a psychologist but I do know dreams and how to interpret them. My experience has pretty much confirmed 'Jung got it right' when it comes to dreams. And I don't say that without evidence since I have an established record of dream material here at the dream forum {on line since 2005}. This is why I appreciate responses to my analysis as you have done with your dream.

Jerry

Age & Gender & Location {Required}: 63 Space Coast, Fla.

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? Host Dream Forum

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