Do we dream about our romantic partners, our family members, our friends, our enemies, our frenemies… or do we dream of strangers?
Judging by the dreams which I recall (and that’s well over half), rather than romantic entanglements or spending time with friends, I’m more likely to replay variations of travel – wandering airports and parking garages, hiking urban neighborhoods in cities where I’ve lived, or those I’ve only imagined.
Is this unusual? Must we call the psychoanalysts for a consult?
To my surprise, this article on Huff Post Women reports that our romantic partners appear in some 20 percent of our dreams.
Dream a Little (Sexy) Dream
Personally, I’m more likely to indulge in a waking reverie of the man in my life than I am to dream about him. Then again, my 20% might fall into the 50% of sleeping adventures that I don’t recall.
Generally, the characters that populate my nights are strangers or occasionally, celebrities. There are also stories, and they entertain me. There are symbols I try to decipher, and others that elude interpretation.
Yet I am one of the fortunate ones to experience lucid dreaming, which merges conscious awareness of dreaming with the dream itself, with results that are fascinating and instructive.
Surely I’m not the only one to remember so many of my dreams! (And do tell, if you’ve mastered the art of the lucid dream – and used it to your advantage.)
Why Do We Dream?
In case you’re curious, according to “Why Do People Dream” at Love To Know, scientists can’t agree on the reasons we dream though the following are generally accepted facts:
… everyone dreams, even those that don’t remember dreaming. Babies in particular dream more, spending almost 70 percent of their sleep dreaming…
Most people dream each night for a total of about two hours, but most dreams are not remembered…
… dreams are a response to the things that happen to you during your wakeful hours, including the sensations you have, the activities you partake in and even the thoughts you have… as well as what your mind absorbed during your day.
Given that I work predominantly from a home office, I’m certainly not racking up the mileage in my waking life. Might nocturnal wanderings mean I should become an airline executive, a TSA agent, a shipping magnate? (In my dreams?) Do I miss my days of travel more than I thought?
Is my subconscious wishful thinking – a desire to be on the go again – more ardent than any romantic inclination?
I don’t recall shuttling across raging rivers; more likely the Northeast Corridor back in the days of frequent (and easier) junkets by air. Yet I am on the move in my dreams, and by all manner of vehicles – planes, trains, and automobiles, so to speak – though rare is the canoe, the yacht, or the ocean liner.
But Hello Dreamboat! Last night was the exception.
In fact, my sleeping stirrings conjured a seafaring scenario in which I was perched on a fishing vessel in a harbor, with four other fishing boats nearby. A woman stood at the helm of each (no one I recognized), and we were all accompanied by a man servant – all very Downton Abbey. Each of the men wore footman garb and was 20-something.
What were we up to? Playing catch – with fish! We were scooping them out of nets with our bare hands – disc-like creatures – roundish, flattish, and silver in color. We were tossing them to each other like a grand game of fishy frisbee, flinging them from bow to bow and all of us, laughing.
As I woke, I found myself standing along a sandy street in front of a primrose-covered cottage. Out strides David Carradine in a towel (no more than 30 years old), and apparently in a hurry. He breezed by me as though I weren’t there, and I had the impression he was out of coffee.
My immediate desire as I sat up in bed?
Exactly. I went straight to the kitchen for a cup of Joe.
Dreams Past, Present, Future?
Should I be concerned that I don’t dream of the man I’m seeing?
Well I’m not. We’re happy together; that’s all I need to know.
Should I feel guilty when a former gentlemen friend makes an appearance? Well I don’t. I enjoy the hello, and am pleased to wake up to my relationship reality.
I am appreciative when I’m visited by those I’ve loved, and in particular, those who are no longer with us. And I put enormous stock in my dreams – and consider them carefully. I may not recall many romantic encounters, but the tidbits and tales I retain reflect life lessons, allow me to solve problems, or better still – to keep asking questions.
I also know my dreams to provide little more than pleasurable amusement – plucking details from my day or evening, and stirring the imagination’s pot.
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