I think, honestly, the dreams we have when we are sleeping fall into an area of “must have’s”. You must have dreams — occasionally at least. Dreams seem to be something, good or bad, that we need to help level out our waking hours. I think dreams can enlighten us, entertain us, confuse us, scare us. I read recently that the number one emotion experienced in dreams is anxiety — I don’t need to be asleep to experience anxiety…. but it does seem to be a prominent emotion in my dreams.
Dreams seep into our nocturnal down times, sometimes like boulders falling off a tall cliff, sometimes like a small pebble being thrown into a still pond — we remember them if we’re lucky and we share them — sometimes we embellish them. The good ones get repeated or continued and the bad ones never leave our thoughts. We can recount them years later with accuracy, as if they were true events experienced vividly and consciously. I still remember a dream I used to have when I was younger about a basement and Frankenstein. There were steps leading to the basement and I had to go forward — backwards was never an option in this dream. And as I went forward, I could sense that Frankenstein was drawing ever closer. I would stop… afraid to move, and there I would stay until I awoke — scared, anxious, teetering on reality. Why some dreams leave us and some stick around I have no idea.
Perhaps the dreams that have a more significant effect on who we are and who we become are the ones we have while we’re wide awake. The ones that take us to visit new friends and the ones that lead us to new trails. The ones that guide us down unfamiliar paths and hand us new opportunities and new experiences — those dreams… the wide awake dreams are the ones that feed our souls and form our psyche’s.
When I was younger, my wide awake dreams were of being a professional tennis player, a writer, and one of those people who performs juggling feats on Venice Beach. I learned how to juggle, quite well actually, and use the skill to impress friends from time to time — sadly, I’ve never been to Venice Beach so that portion of the dream is still waiting to come to fruition. I played tennis on my college team — but losing seemed to be easier than winning… so the dream of being a professional tennis player has gone. Then there’s the dream of writing. The internet and how-to blog sites made it easy to revisit this dream a few months ago when I started First Pages. So the dream of writing is (partially) alive and (sometimes) well.
Our dreams change throughout our lives, just as we change — and change is good. Change means we are present and continuing and becoming. Sometimes our dreams are fulfilled and sometimes they need a bit more time. Some dreams stay dreams.
I like the thought of our asleep dreams and our awake dreams meeting somewhere in the middle of laughter and hope. We must have dreams… we must have hope and laughter and even anxiety. Because we are forever emerging and evolving — and your dreams will make sure you get there… when you’re awake, or when you’re fast asleep.
A painting comes too me from afar; who knows how far; I divined it, I saw it, I did it, but even so , the next day, I cannot see what I have done myself. How can anyone penetrate my dreams, my instincts, my desires, my thoughts, which have taken so long to develop and to see the light of day, and comprehend what I have put into it, perhaps even against my will. ~~ Pablo Picasso