Had a few pretty weird dreams this weekend and for someone who barely ever remembers her dreams this is kind of a big deal for me.
1) I am at my parents’ house and check the mail only to discover piles and piles of letters and things in the mailbox and sitting on the stoop. There is no explanation as to why they were all held somewhere and then delivered at the same time but there is enough that I have to ask my mom to help me bring it into the house. Included among all of this mail are little bundles of maybe 5-7 envelopes each, all identical (black with a sunflower sticker on the back), all addressed to me. The bundles are bound by rubber bands that I assume has something to do with the processing of mail by the post office. I have no idea who these letters are from. I open a few envelopes and they all contain one or two pages of handwritten correspondence. I quickly scan the words for some clue regarding the author, including the scribbly signature, but I cannot figure it out. I worry that this was someone who has been sending me frequent letters and most likely assumed that I had chosen to ignore all of them, when in fact, I was not receiving them at all. I go back to the letters to try to decipher their origin.
2) I am working at some sort of fashion-related office. My boss is a fashionable 40-something dude, who makes me feel inadequate and nervous. One of my coworkers is there, a 20-something woman, seems nice enough. I have brought in some kid Tyler to be interviewed for a job. He is 16, I don’t know how I know him, but I assure my boss that he is just the summer temp worker we are looking for. I take Tyler up to a meeting room for the interview and then look out the office window facing the street. Apparently this office is right across a sketchy 3 story apartment building that is located right outside of Pape station here in Toronto. I see it every day. Right in front there are two huge bears fighting. They keep standing up on their hind legs and knocking each other down. One of them keeps falling against the door to one of the apartments. The occupants, clearly not aware of what is happening outside, open the door slightly to investigate the noise, only to slam it shut as soon as they realize what is causing the ruckus. In my head I wonder if this event is worthy of an interruption to the job interview happening upstairs. I decide it is not. Next thing I know I am lying in bed, one of the bears is right beside me with one of its paws on my chest. Someone is there urging me to leave and let the animal control people kill the bear. I know what I am doing is super dangerous because although the bear is docile at the moment, this could quickly change, but I am trying to understand why they cannot just tranquilize the bear and transport him out of the city. I am told that is not an option and he will have to be killed.
There are more scraps of other dreams that I can remember but they are all just little bits and pieces. When I took an Altered States of Consciousness class as part of my Psych degree, we had one unit regarding dreams and their meaning, or lack thereof. My professor was of the mid set that some dreams may mean something, as in they could be valuable pieces of information about your unconscious or some events in your life you are trying to deal with, while others are just left over “mental garbage” that is being cleared out while you sleep. I asked him how he knows the difference between the two and he said that “you just know”. As in, there are some dreams that really stick out, have a lot of emotion attached to them, haunt you the next day, while others are not remembered at all, or are only briefly remembered upon rising and then forgotten. The fact that I am having more and more dreams that are sticking around in my thoughts for a few days, paired with the fact that I rarely remember my dreams, makes me think there is something going on.
In another class of mine, we did dream analysis and what that professor said was that even if you do not believe that dreams are your sub-/un-conscious telling you something, the meaning you can give the narrative of a dream is actually all that matters. For example, a girl in my class shared that the dream she chose to analyze was about something mundane, but after going through the exercise she thought that the dream was actually about her uneasy feeling that her soon to be parents-in-law were not happy about their son’s choice to marry her for religious reasons. So maybe her dream about doing laundry or making a sandwich or whatever it was, wasn’t actually some complicated unconscious fear trying to sneak up to the surface, but if through the exercise she uncovers some unease about something actually happening in her life, then, my professor would argue (and I would agree), the dream still served an important purpose.
It is perhaps not only the waking life that is worth examining.