An Unconventional Drive

Dream Journal

The dream:
The particulars of the first part of the dream are hazy in my memory…almost like they aren’t actually part of the dream that has my interest. In fact, I may have actually had two unrelated dreams, one right after the other. Regardless, this is what I remember:
I was at M’s house for one of our occasional friend dates. It was her daughter T’s birthday, so I had brought a present wrapped in silver, reflective wrapping paper. In the dream, I discovered that T had a younger brother with the same birthday, so I drew a line down the middle of the box and wrote her name on one side and his on the other to indicate that the gift was for both of them. Meanwhile M was on the phone talking to someone else. …and there was something about a frozen entree of mac and cheese that I had brought for M.
Then, I was watching the Mythbusters do a special on the Grand Canyon that involved zip lining from one side to the other. They weren’t harnessed in the traditional way, but were connected to the line only with elaborate helmets so that their hands and the rest of their bodies were unencumbered.
And then I was driving alone through the Grand Canyon. My compact car had large windows and a sun roof, and if I leaned back a bit, the view was quite stunning and larger than life. There was a way to operate the car–which had surreptitiously changed into a giant Tahoe-type vehicle without my noticing–from the very back. The rear of the vehicle offered even better views, so I decided to continue the trek from there despite the fact that maneuvering became significantly more difficult. I drove on, from the back, for some time with no problem, but then things got tricky. I lost control of my car–but somehow I was suddenly unsuccessfully operating two vehicles going opposite directions with the same controls. I was able to slow both down and safely park albeit haphazardly positioned. And all at once, I was again back to just the one vehicle. I couldn’t actually turn off the car, though. I was holding down a brake button from my spot in the back, but the key to turn off the ignition was at the front. I was trying to decide whether it was safe to let go of the brake in order to rush to the front and turn off the car, but then two police officers strolled over and the brake/ignition problem sorted itself out and was no longer an issue. I raised my hands so that the police would be able to see that I didn’t have a weapon, and caught a nonverbal exchange between the two. The dark-skinned officer on the left raised his eyebrows in a mocking “can-you-believe-this-lady?” expression. The fair-skinned officer on the right shrugged as if to say “you get all types out here.” Then he indicated that I should open the hatch, and I obliged. He started to write out a ticket, but then went around front to investigate something, leaving his pad behind. I was able to see that the fine for illegally operating a motor vehicle from the rear was about $90. I felt relieved at the low cost, but knew there would likely be additional fines. Then I woke up.

My thoughts on the dream:
I think it’s interesting how something crazy can happen in a dream, but how I don’t realize how ludicrous it is until I wake up. The car changing in type and in quantity didn’t even warrant a questioning thought in my dream. It was merely inconvenient when the one car became two. It was stressful to operate the two vehicles simultaneously, and I felt concern about how much my ticket would be, but the negative emotions in the dream were extremely muted, almost like it was someone else’s life rather than my own.
In my mental/emotional economy, a vehicle in a dream represents a person’s life. I find it interesting that in my dream I was running the show from the back seat. It’s like my subconscious is telling me that I’m doing things the hard way. I may need to make a difficult decision if I’m going to put a stop to the way I’m doing things, though. (Should I let go of the brake to reach the ignition?) If it were an issue of passivity, I think I would have been the passenger. But what of the changes to the vehicle? First compact, then large. First clipping along in a specific direction, then losing control and haphazardly moving in opposing and arbitrary directions. If I continue this way, my subconscious is advising that I’ll get into trouble (police) and that it’ll cost me (ticket).
As for the first part of the dream, the only thing that sticks out to me is the feeling of giving more in a relationship than the other party. I come bearing gifts (and a random frozen meal), and my friend won’t even get off the phone to talk to me.
The Mythbusters part is perplexing. They were suspended from their heads….which to me is a reference to being overly cerebral about things… Other than that, though, I’ve got nothing. I think someone just tightroped across the Grand Canyon, though, so maybe that’s where I came up with that.

Themes/Analysis:
Feelings of being unimportant and undervalued.
Concern about being too cerebral.
Major life changes (new job? potential move to Spokane?)
The desire to take in the beauty around me.
Losing control and being pulled in different directions.
Trying too hard – doing things the hard way and not being able to turn the hard parts off.
The emotional cost of losing control.
Feeling judged.

Physical Manifestation of an Emotional Paralysis

Dream Journal

The dream:
I was at work (my current work, not the new job) in the reception chair. Everything was normal…but then I grew catatonic while the people around me continued with their regular activities. As I sat in the chair, my body grew stiff, my body leaning backward: back straight, limbs outstretched, mouth gaping. My eyes were open, but I was not able to see. My hearing, however, was perfect. People around me casually commented on my vegetative state, but didn’t act concerned. I woke up from the dream at one point, but then sank back into sleep and the dream continued.

My thoughts on the dream:
It was strange to be surrounded by people, yet separate. Although I was keenly aware of my surroundings despite my lack of sight, I was also terribly alone. Still, I was not anxious or panicked by my inability to move, but rather fascinated by the experience. It felt like an intellectual experiment, albeit involuntary. I wondered somewhat disappointedly at my coworkers’ lack of concern….but I wasn’t very concerned about it either. I was more curious about how I would get my work done than anything else.

Themes/Analysis:
Feelings of helplessness and paralyzation.
Lack of emotional connection to people around me — Academic interest in and over-analyzation of experiences rather than emotional interaction.
Feelings of not being valued except by what I contribute.
Finally, I think this stems from the fact that I am worried that although my last day on the job is Monday, no one will actually miss me.

The Depths

Dream Journal

The dream:
I was scuba diving with a couple of professional diver guides. We were exploring shipwrecks, and at every site there was a dead body pinned down among the wreckage. I never saw the faces, only their legs, and aside from the stillness, nothing appeared amiss. After a time, we surfaced at a dock in order to unload a few unnecessary items to a colleague who was waiting for the divers. We were about to go under again and I woke up.

My thoughts on the dream:
I have always viewed water (especially deep water) as a representation of my subconscious or inner emotional state. In my dream, I was navigating the depths with two guides, but I was more like a silent observer; I followed them as they explored, but I didn’t really participate. Everywhere we went, there was death but I was afraid to take a deep look at the faces. I preferred to lurk behind and only see its periphery. I think the divers may represent my counselors, those who are skilled in diving deep into people’s inner pain.

Themes/Analysis:
Exploration of my inner emotional turmoil, but fear of looking at the face of death. It’s possible that there is treasure in the depths, but fear of death makes me hesitant to really delve into the dark places.
A need to unload unnecessary emotional baggage.

Nighttime Musings

Dream Journal

The dream:
J and CJ were at a thrift store. I was to join them after having collected a few items to purge from our home. I brought the small box of donations into the shop for the go-ahead from J as I didn’t want to accidentally donate something he wanted to keep. He didn’t really look at what I was trying to show him, and I was vying for his attention in vain.

Me: Oh, I think I grabbed some of your Lego by mistake.
J: *silence*
Me: Wait, no, it’s just a Lego-themed game for your old Game Boy.”

I finally got his attention, and he indicated that he didn’t want anything that I had brought. But then he pulled out some essential oil that I had accidentally put in the box, and began putting it on CJ’s back. I was concerned about the potency of the oil (oregano); I didn’t want CJ to have some sort of skin reaction.

My thoughts on the dream:
The predominant feeling was that of frustration. J would not pay attention to me, even though I had his best interests at heart – I didn’t want to get rid of something he wanted to keep. I think CJ’s appearance in my dream was just because J was at his house last night watching the game. Why was J putting the oils on his back? Not sure. It wasn’t a sexual type thing, although my waking mind feels uncomfortable at the thought. It was more of a goofing off type thing, like he was taking something that I was trying to show him – something valuable to me (I didn’t want to donate it) – and then sharing it with someone else rather than interacting with me.

Themes/Analysis:
Feelings of neglect and frustration in my marriage
A desire to simplify my life
Looking out for the well-being of others, but not being appreciated