Monday, December 10, 2018

Do You Have Vivid Dreams? Do You Record Them?

I am a vivid dreamer, almost always in color. As a Christian, I believe God can speak to us through dreams, though not always. I trust the Holy Spirit to guide me when my dreams are vivid enough that I remember them when I wake up.

Today, I have a new release! My Dream Journal: A Notebook for Tracking and Interpreting Dreams is a journal to keep at your bedside to record those dreams. If you're anything like me, once your brain kicks into gear for the day, the dreams vanish. I keep a notebook beside the bed to write down my dreams (and any book ideas that pop into my head just as I'm falling asleep). My Dream Journal now gives you space to explore those dreams, hunt for symbols, seek for meanings, and interpret the dreams.

I'll share a recent dream so you can see how I use My Dream Journal.

My most recent dream was a couple of days ago. I was in a huge, white room with florescent lights overhead. Lots of tables, lots of mess around, and I was trying to get it all organized. I had help: Alan Alda and Richard Schiff (we're currently re-watching The West Wing, but we're not yet to Alan Alan's time there, so his presence surprised me.) Richard Schiff was flustered and agitated, pacing all over the place - in perfect Toby character. Alan Alda came in with a briefcase inside box. The briefcase couldn't close all the way because it was overflowing with papers spilling out everywhere, so he was using the box to hold it all together. He brought it to the one table I'd just cleared, and dumped it for me to fix. Toby just kept pacing around. Then I woke up.

In My Dream Journal, I first write down an account on the dream on the journal pages - just tell the story as I remember it, recording it as quickly as I can without thinking about it too much. Then, on the Key Elements page, I record the celebrities, the white lights, the room, the pacing, the briefcase, the box, the mess, and the tables. Those things stood out to me most, so each one gets its own box for interpreting. On the interpretation page, I record the date, the mood I was in when I fell asleep and then again when I woke up, and the last foods I ate before sleeping. (Sounds stereotypical, but you may see patterns develop). My Dream Journal also has sketch pages, in case I need to sketch out anything. I can't draw stick figures, so those pages are used for any questions that form as I research or for any shape or design I might see in the dream that words can't describe.

When I'm awake and have a few moments of spare time, I research the symbolism from each one. Please use caution and utmost discernment in your research. Let the Holy Spirit guide you.

I use the dictionary at DreamMoods to help me. This is not a site that I wholeheartedly recommend, but it is one that I use and it has proved useful in the past. Again, use caution and discernment as you explore the site. I pray as I read over each item, asking the Holy Spirit to alert me to anything He wants me to see, and to blind me to anything He doesn't.

From my findings there on this dream:

The briefcase seems to represent my current state of preparedness, and since we're currently in the middle of a family crisis, this resonates with our current situation. I'm trying to make order out of the chaos. The mess represents the chaos and suggests I need to get my life in order.

Right below the word briefcase, I notice the word bright, and the Holy Spirit nudges me. The room in my dream was exceptionally bright. Bright white. In the dictionary, bright represents Divinity, and that resonates with me, too. Even in the midst of chaos, God is right there with me, surrounding me, enveloping me with His peace (represented by the white.)

The celebrities are interesting for a couple of different reasons. We're in the season of The West Wing where Toby is highly agitated and angry, frustrated with the direction of his work and his personal life. He's ready to blow a gasket, and that's honestly the way I've felt the last few months as we've dealt with one crisis after another.

At some point in the last couple of weeks, I thought about Alan Alda's Hawkeye character in the final episodes of M*A*S*H and how he had a mental breakdown from seeing all that he has seen and experienced during the war, and then the final danger than triggered his break.

We're dealing with a loved one's mental illness. Every day is like a roller coaster - we never know what to expect from one day to the next. We walk on eggshells, never knowing what any of us might say or do that could serve as a trigger that could send our loved one over the edge. (The day after I had this dream, the trigger was pulled. Our loved one is now in the hospital.)

Our dreams can serve as warnings or instruction or prophecy - and we usually don't realize it until after the fact. Writing down our dreams - recording details in a journal - helps us track the dreams and make sense of them as a whole.

My Dream Journal is now available on Amazon.

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