the gregarious homebody

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Paging Dr. Freud

At least once a month at least I have a horribly upsetting dream about my mom. She died 4 1/2 years ago and I miss her terribly. I'm the luckiest daughter in the world because I have absolutely no regrets about my relationship with her. So why do I have these dreams?

Most of them have a common theme: she's alive and healthy but she's done with me. She's got some kind of interesting thing going on in her life and she's simply decided she isn't into the mothering thing anymore. I wake up heartbroken--realizing that not only is she dead but questioning why I would dream something I (almost) know to not be true.

She wasn't a smothering mother. She didn't question me constantly about how I was living my life. She didn't offer advice unless it was asked for. We talked on the phone a lot, but she also had her own life and while she was definitely interested in what was going on with me, she was confident that I was doing the right thing, that I was making good choices. And that's how she was when I was a kid too. And it gave me tremendous comfidence in my choices, knowing she had confidence in me. That, my friends, is good mothering.

Last night's dream was just as bad but a different theme. This time she wasn't healthy or rejecting. She was terribly sick. I kept trying to call her to see if she was still there. She slept all the time and couldn't talk. And she wouldn't die. It felt like it went on and on, mixed in with a dream in which I was at the vet (who was actually Craig Ferguson) and I was naked.

I told you I love those Scottish guys.

I never said I was normal.

And while I have a WHOLE RANGE of things I could talk to a psychiatrist about, my relationship with my mom really isn't one of them (except for a few tiny things. Hey, she wasn't perfect!). So why am I plagued with these horrible dreams? They're so personal and so painful. I'd do anything to make them stop, even if it meant I never had a nice dream about her.

Calling all you armchair psychiatrists. Any ideas?


Anonymous said...

Oh gosh, I really don't know why our brains concoct these sorts of dreams. It must be incredibly confusing for you...and a bit sad.

I don't know. Dreams can be wonderful and they can be downright hurtful and scary. It all 'comes from us' but I do wonder why and how!!


jen said...

i know there are books out there with "meanings" but i'm pretty sure they're crap.

32point5 said...

Hey Jen, I've been trying to think of what to say...I think bad dreams serve the purpose of showing us that the "real" things stressing us out really aren't all that bad. I always have stupid dreams that I can't wake up from but when I do it's like "whoa!" and a feeling of great relief comes over me. Don't sweat it!!!

Anonymous said...

Yep, I would not read a dream book for dream meanings...I think they are rubbish and all say mostly different things!

Dreams are for us to pick apart and figure out because they come from us, somewhere somehow and only we'll know the background behind it.


jen said...

I wish I had relief after I woke up. But they just make me incredibly sad and confused. Oh well. I think, actually, what this may be telling me is that I really should talk to a therapist about a LOT of things.

EGE said...

I hope it's not presumptuous of me to say so or anything, but it sounds to me like your subconscious hasn't quite accepted the idea that she's gone, and is searching for an explanation as to why the two of you never see each other anymore. I don't know how to make them stop, though. Maybe have special "memory visits" before you go to sleep?

jen said...

Wow. That makes a lot of sense. Really! Just like I can't comprehend that the little baby I had is now almost 13 years old and a head taller than me, it seems surreal, truly, that I can't see my mom when I want to. I simply can't believe she's dead.

Huh. That really does make sense. Thank you!

And may I call you Dr.?

Anonymous said...

I've had similar dreams about my sister who died a decade ago at 29. The underlying theme (imo) is that you feel helpless. Whether she is well and moving on or sick and you can't reach her, you don't have any control over her leaving you (in some way, shape or form).
It's sad. But somehow your subconscious is still trying to grieve and sort through your loss. You know she's gone but you are trying to figure out a way to intervene and connect (and control) while your mind is in dream state. Give in and begin accept that you don't have control and can't stop or change death. I think your subconscious dreams will reflect this once your conscious self is aware that none of us have control and we just have to do the best with each day we have (for ourselves and with our loved ones). Your mom is at peace, know that :)

Judy said...

"A hundred flowers in the clover;
Only one mother the whole world over."

That's why.

I have dreams when I'm hugging my dad again, he's just magically there....

jen said...

I want the hugging dreams!!

EGE said...

I'm glad it helped. How about if, instead of Dr., you just call me House! :)

But wow, a head taller than you at not-quite thirteen? Wow.


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