I’ve been trying for years to write down my dreams. I’m sure many people experience the same thing that I do when I dream; dreams feeling so real that sometimes they deeply effect the way I act the following day, pretty clear déjà vu type dreams, and dreams that are so ridiculous that all I can do is laugh when I try to verbalize them.
So, one of my goals was to at least record my dreams for one week, and I finally succeeded in making this happen. It was not always easy…when I wake up at 6 a.m.every morning, I lay in bed for a few minutes to try to remember what was just going through my subconscious…and by the time I hit the shower I usually forget again. But I figured out that if I just stop what I’m doing and retrace my thoughts, I could remember my dreams again. I would learn to repeat this process throughout the morning, until finally I arrived at work and immediately typed out my dreams and emailed them to myself. It was kind of a nice routine to have this in the mornings and I began to look forward to taking the time each day to write my dreams down. It felt relieving, in a way. I’m sure if I keep at it, I would begin to see patterns in my subconscious and could probably lose myself in trying to interpret my dreams.
My dreams have changed quite a bit over the years. For as long as I can remember, my dreams hardly ever involved me. It was as if I was watching a movie or observing something going on in someone else’s life. Sometimes I knew the people, sometimes not. When I was involved in my own dream, it was pretty much your run of the mill stuff…trying to run and being unable to, sometimes I would get into a fight in my dreams and would go to punch the bad guy and my arm would feel like a wet noodle by the time it hit the person. For years, as a child and as an adult, I would have a reoccurring dream about giant faces that would appear in the walls of my childhood home and try to suck people into the walls. I hardly have that dream anymore, and over the past week, I’ve found that I am now a central character in my dreams. Somehow this makes me feel better, but I’m not sure why.
Erica and I were talking the other day about the challenge of recording dreams and we thought about a theory used in paranormal investigations. Often, when folks believe they are witnessing something paranormal, such as seeing shadows in the corner of a dark room or seeing ghostly figures in old pictures, there is a phenomenon going on in the brain. When the eyes see something, a signal goes to the brain where the brain scans its catalog of known items, objects, human characteristics, faces, places, etc. to try to help you figure out what you are seeing. It’s an interesting theory and we thought of it because we wondered if maybe something similar is going on when we try to remember our dreams and maybe this is why it can be difficult to verbalize them or try to make sense of what is going on. I found that sometimes I had difficulty finding words to describe what was happening in my dreams, but I also couldn’t really explain what was going on, so I figured my conscious brain was just trying to put together it’s best description of what was going on in my subconscious. Perhaps this warrants more research someday, but for now, I’m glad that I found a way to achieve this small goal of recording my dreams. I hope to continue this discipline and learn something more from it.