... what do you think these dreams mean?
In November, 2010, I will be 80. When I get up in the morning, I speak these dreams that I remember into a small tape recorder. My right arm, dead of a stroke, has come to life a little but not so I can write as I am right-handed. Many of my dreams fly briefly into my thoughts to go puff. Some stick, except for those which are private, here are some of them.
He looked like a movie character though not recognizable. He said he was the father of the woman out of sight. She said, “How would she know he was her father?” He said, “It will take a little time to get to know each other”. In the next scene he was being dragged on what seemed to be a sled. She had a cord over her shoulder moving the sled along. He seemed to be just laying there in acceptance.
I was to be a politician of some kind. I think Tom L., a politician I know, was in the background encouraging me on. I was the only candidate for the position. There were lots of people there, crowding around but no one seemed to know me. I was now smothered with a whole bunch of coats hung on racks very tightly so they were hard to move as I tried to push my way through.
There was a man and wife but not recognizable. I looked up what was a spiral staircase that went up for five stories or more. I asked if I could be shown up the stairs as I wanted to look at the different floors. The first floor had lots of beautiful paintings with ornate frames on the walls. As I went up through the other floors all the paintings were even more beautiful than the first. As I kept going to the top, I awoke.
I had just come out of the COOP, out of the front door and took a right on a street the name of which I could not remember. Very frustrating to not remember because I had taken that street many times in the past. The street was crowded with people as I was trying to squeeze through to make my way. As I elbowed my way through but I didn’t really know where I was going. I remembered thinking that down on the right was Brattle Street where the Cambridge Center for Adult Education was located. I had not been there for a long time and I don’t think that was where I was headed.
I was in the cellar at 84 Cleveland Ave. in Everett, MA, my home when I was a kid. It was dank and cold and rain was pouring down outside. The cellar was a shambles. I found an old golf bag that came apart in my hands. I did not know where to start there was just so much junk. My grandfather had left some moldy rolled up diagrams that were a mystery to me. The walls were seeping water, a lot of moss on the walls. I felt overwhelmed and sad.
This felt like the Judge Baker Guidance Center where I worked over forty years ago. I had a teenage client and I had lost eleven dollars to him because of a bet, although I could not remember the bet. We were gathered for a clinical conference. There was a psychiatrist, another psychologist and a social worker, the standard format in those days. When it was my turn, I told of the bet I had with my client and tried to collect the eleven dollars from those present. The psychiatrist fumbled around in his pockets and came up empty. What a stuffed shirt, I thought.
There was a meeting, but I don’t know where, and none of the people did I know. A psychologist was trying to administer an IQ test to a middle aged woman whose face was clouded so as to be unrecognizable. I did not know the psychologist either, but I could see that he was not getting anywhere with the woman. Most of the responses she gave were unintelligible not score able. I could see he was being frustrated but I did not think I should interfere.
A guy with a course face and slicked down hair was talking with the golf pro. This was the golf course where I was a member for twenty-five years. The man who I never saw before was telling the pro that someone stole a golf cart. Then, there was Jerry K., walking along smiling and waving at everybody. Jerry had died in Florida a few weeks ago. I was trying to find someone I knew as I had resigned the course about five years ago. I resigned because of having a stroke a while back. Even though I was no longer a member, maybe someone would let me play if I did not compete. This is a variation of a dream that I keep having.
Why is it that we remember some dreams and not others? I suppose this is because we want to remember. In the 60's and 70's, Karen Horney, a German psychiatrist that came to us in the US, was very influential. "Horney, however, differed with Freud, maintaining that symbols within the dream, like metaphors and analogies in our speaking and writing, exemplify our creative efforts to capture the essence of previously unspoken or inexpressible aspects of ourselves." In all my reading this past month, this is the profound idea that I want to keep. Dreams are a creative effort to express ourselves.
March 5, 2010