Sunday, June 12, 2011

What Dreams May Come

This week I've been even flakier than usual because of lack of sleep. The Duchess has been getting up daily between 4:15am and 5:15am and then wailing, waking up Honey and thus, me. The Grump is eerily immune to this fussing, although he could be faking so I'll get up and tend to them, but that early in the morning, I don't even have a brain to figure out trickery let alone how to deal with it. Anyway, both girls rarely, if ever, sleep past 6am, so it's not like we're used to sleeping in.

(Can you imagine someone characterizing snoozing past 6am as "sleeping in"??)

The Duchess wakes up because she's been having these vivid dreams. I love hearing about them and writing them down, even if she embroiders or changes them in the retelling. The past couple of nights, she has been dreaming about frogs - not real frogs, but those cute little plastic froggies that she plays with in the kiddie class that we attend. (Ok, she puts the frogs on her head and then "sneezes" them off, which is one of her favorite activities) (We are easily amused here). Last night, in her dream, the frogs were playing with her in her room with her toys and were being good. The previous night, the frogs were being bad and she had to give them a time out. I find this hilarious.

Clearly, the Duchess is experiencing what my college Psych 101 professor called a "day residue," which is, as you can probably figure out, bits and pieces of things that happened to you recently that emerge in your dream. According to the prof, the day residue doesn't really mean anything, it's just stuff that was kind of sitting around your brain and getting sucked in to your main microprocessors.

So I think about this a lot because I too have been having some unusally vivid dreams lately. The one that sticks out most in my mind is from the other night. I was sitting on a beach with Honey (I'm not sure if the Grump and the Duchess were also there, they may have been but I didn't see them or interact for this segment). We were facing down the beach, and it was a calm, sunny day. I had a balloon in my hand and the wind was tugging at it, so I let it go. I told Honey, "It will probably pop."

This was so clear in my head and so mystifying to me, that I needed to think about it. I found a dream analysis website called that had all kinds of interesting details on it, and basically, I had a stress dream. Naturally, only I seem to be able to take a day at the beach and make it stressful.

I am not entirely certain how best to interpret it, but basically the location signifies an intersection between the rational (beach) and irrational (water) state of mind. Looking at the water signifies major changes I'm facing, and looking down the beach means I'm seeking to return to that which is familiar. The baby can mean lots of things, but perhaps it means an attempt to return to innocence, or the need to take baby steps towards a goal. And weirdly, the balloon is not a cheery little trifle - it signifies "frustrating conditions" that I am trying to "rise above." A balloon that pops "symbolizes an unrealized goal or dream."

So should I be freaked out? There are a couple of situations in my life that I wish were better, so I'm wondering if the dream was me subconsciously working one or both of them out. Or, maybe it is just a "day residue" - we are all about to go to the beach for a week's vacation really soon, and I've been thinking about that a lot (at least, wondering how I'm going to pack for it).

Do you ever spend any time thinking about your dreams? Or your kids' dreams? What do they tell you?

1 comment: