Dreaming In Metaphors

‘What if you slept, and in your sleep you dreamed, and what if in your dream you went to heaven and there plucked a strange and beautiful flower, and what if when you awoke you had the flower in your hand? Ah, what then.’  ~ Samuel Taylor Coleridge


Usually, when in the throes of a serious emotional issue that I’m not able to reckon with in the light of day (which is often the case when it comes to my emotions) I can almost guarantee that I’ll be dreaming about
it that night. I know going to bed emotionally frustrated — well, going to bed emotionally frustrated after eating an entire family-size bag of Stacy’s Texarkana Hot Pita Chips (they’re all natural *smile*) — I can rest assured that my unconscious-self will be working in overdrive to come up with a solution to the problem just in time for my morning coffee. Last Sunday night’s dream [I never forget the good ones!] went down like this;

Scene I
I’m in the home I spent most of my teen years in. Someone’s ringing the doorbell and my Mother and I — we had been sitting in our living room together — get up together to answer it. We open the door and standing there is a woman smiling broadly. The woman immediately began chirping, “Heeey! Guess what? I just opened up a bakery shop right across the street in that vacant building over there!” My Mom and I slowly turn our heads in the direction she’s pointing to and sure enough the once vacant house now had an awning displaying the word ‘Bakery’ and a glass window front filled with all kinds of delicious looking, freshly baked breads. Mom and I were very pleased and impressed and we invited the stranger into our home for (what else?) coffee.

Scene II
The baker woman and I are sitting face to face at my dining room table with a cup of the java talking. My Mom is no longer present. The volume slowly comes up on the scene and I hear the woman giving me her secrets to a successful bakery shop. She tells me its due to the variety of recipes that she had collected over the years from family, friends, acquaintances, and her travels to other countries… I sat there and silently wished that I too, could be a Great Baker!

Scene III
Somehow that conversation led me to get up from the table and venture outside the house… NAKED! It’s broad daylight and I’m creeping alongside fences’ of neighbors’ front lawns going up one side of the street, looking to my left, my right and behind me to see if anyone was watching. I see no one. When I’ve seemingly taken all the embarrassment that I can handle, I dawdle a few moments behind some hedges. Once I’ve felt that I’ve  gathered up enough courage, I turn in the opposite direction I’d been going and head back to my house in the same manner I came. I’m trying to go, it seems, unnoticed. I steal back into the house and go into the front room to peer out from behind the gauzy white curtains that are hung from the picture window. The street seems quiet and peaceful. All the doorways and windows of homes were darkened. No one noticed or even cared…

Well according to my ‘big-book-a-dreams’, my subconscious was using some very common metaphors to relay pertinent information to my sleeping consciousness:

THE DREAM BREAKDOWN

… I’m in the home I spent most of my teen years in. Someone’s ringing the doorbell and my Mother and I — we had been sitting in the living room together — get up to answer it. We open the door and standing there is a woman smiling broadly. The woman immediately began chirping, “Heeey! Guess what? I just opened up a bakery shop right across the street in that vacant building over there!”
“The house you grew up in has a huge influence on your psychology. Your house gives you boundaries and it’s where you go to feel safe, it’s every corner a reflection of your mind. It is the symbol of your family, connections and traditions…
Your dream childhood home can help give you clues about your current situation and help you examine your personality… Can your dream help you relate your past to your present life and to your life in the future?
Doors and doorways represent an opportunity for either positive or negative change. You may be entering into a new stage in your life, moving from one level of consciousness to another.”

… My Mom and I slowly turn our heads in the direction she’s pointing to and sure enough the once vacant house now had an awning displaying the word ‘Bakery’ and a glass window front filled with all kinds of delicious looking, freshly baked breads. Mom and I were very pleased and impressed and we invited the stranger into our home for (what else?) coffee.
“Whether you are a man or a woman, take note of the female figures in your dreams – be they a person, animal, quality or object – as they carry a message from your unconsciousness. If the selfless, loving mother figure appears in your dream ask yourself if you need to develop motherly qualities within yourself… ”

“… letting someone in through the door indicates your willingness to embrace change and the unknown… “

“If you dream of bakers, this is an association with the creative ability and sexual intercourse, as loaves are images of male sexuality and the oven of female sexuality.”

“To see bread in your dream represents the basic need of life, or aspects of things or people that sustain you.”

“In waking life coffee is a stimulant, so do you need to inject more energy into your waking life? Coffee may also represent sociability, friendship, the giving and sharing of affection or a social life that is in need of reviving.”

… The baker woman and I are sitting face to face at the dining room table with a cup of java, talking. My Mom has left us. The volume slowly comes up on the scene and I hear her giving me the secrets to her successful bakery shop. She tells me that it was due to the variety of recipes that she had collected over the years from family, friends, acquaintances, and her travels to other countries… I sat there and silently wished that I too could be a great baker!
“A cookbook (recipes) denotes the many opportunities and ways you can use to reach your goals.”

… Somehow that conversation leads to me get up from the table and venture outside the house… NAKED! It’s broad daylight and I’m creeping alongside fences of neighbors’ front lawns, going up one side of the street, looking to my left, my right and behind me to see if anyone is watching. I see no one.
“The clothes we wear in dreams are aspects of our persona, so when they are stripped away they enable you to see yourself for who you really are; in other words, the absence of clothes reveals not only your body but also your true self.”

… When I’ve seemingly taken all the embarrassment that I can handle, I dawdle a few moments behind a neighbor’s hedges and when I gathered up enough courage I turn in the opposite direction I’d been going and head back to the house in the same manner I came. I’m trying to go, it seems, unnoticed.
“If you felt embarrassed in your dream, do you feel vulnerable about exposing your true self or feel lacking in some way? Are you afraid of being rejected if you show others what you truly feel? What are you afraid of exposing about yourself?”

… I steal back into the house and go into the front room to peer out from behind the gauzy curtains that are hung from the picture window… the street is quiet and peaceful. The doorways and windows were darkened. No one noticed or even cared…
“…If nobody other than yourself noticed your nudity, your unconscious is comforting you by letting you know its safe to reveal your feelings in the real world.”

~Breakdowns from The Element Encyclopedia Of 20,000 Dreams by Theresa Cheung


So, fairly obvious stuff, huh!? And the great part of it is, it actually gave me the insight I needed on a sticky situation I had the other day when … aahhh — well, that’s another blog. Point being, that if we take the time and make the effort to make sense of our dreams, they have the ability to illuminate our path just a bit more in our waking life.
As my sister Gina always says, “Life has a way of teaching us everything we need to know … you just have to pay attention.”

Now ain’t that the truth, Ruth …




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