Welcome to the Misadventures of Widowhood blog!

In January of 2012 my soul mate of 42 years passed away after nearly 12 years of living with severe disabilities due to a stroke. I survived the first year after Don’s death doing what most widows do---trying to make sense of my world turned upside down. The pain and heartache of loss, my dark humor, my sweetest memories and, yes, even my pity parties are well documented in this blog.

Now that I’m a "seasoned widow" the focus of my writing has changed. I’m still a widow looking through that lens but I’m also a woman searching for contentment, friends and a voice in my restless world. Some people say I have a quirky sense of humor that shows up from time to time in this blog. Others say I make some keen observations about life and growing older. I say I just write about whatever passes through my days---the good, bad and the ugly. Comments welcome and encouraged. Let's get a dialogue going! Jean

Monday, May 12, 2014

Dreams and Rain Storms

At the risk of turning this blog into a dream diary, I had another weird one last night. I was lost in a large city with a storm approaching and it was the middle of the night. After searching narrow streets bordering on the ghetto, I finally found my apartment (one I’d never lived in in my non-dream life). It was like a tunnel---long, windowless, dark and bleak with brown cement walls and I was telling a niece-in-law who was with me that it “grows on you.” That's when I remembered that I had left my car on the other end of town and I had to go back through the city again to get my car. I woke up then to a thunderstorm beating rain on the windowpanes. It was six-thirty and the alarm would ring at seven. I had an early morning appointment with the irrigation people to turn on my system, so I got up.

Caves in dreams can mean you’re exploring your subconscious mind or it can symbolize the womb and thus be a place of concealment or protection. In my case I’m going with door number one and I believe the cave-like apartment was a self-discovery thing and I was discovering potted plants at every turn of my apartment, too many of them! They were everywhere and I was wondering how they survive without natural daylight. Okay, that’s not too hard to figure out that plants are all about fertility and potential---growth---and in my wake life I’ve been worried that I have too many irons in too many fires as I try to rebuild my post-widowhood life. I need to purge some “irons” and nail down what I want to do with the time I have left on earth. Where do I fit in? What’s it going to take to make me truly happy? When is some of the stuff I’m doing going to start paying off? These questions are tucked in the back of my mind and won’t go away---apparently not even when I sleep.

Dreaming about forgetting where you parked your car can signal a dissatisfaction or unhappiness with your waking life according to the dream dictionary Duh, I didn’t need a dream to tell me that but still I was surprised. I already knew that dreaming about cars in general can symbolize ambition and your ability (or inability) to navigate through the various stages of your life but there are tons of dream interpretations based on what is happening to your car. I’m just glad my dream car wasn’t under water, crushed or overheated. Parked on the other end of town? It would have been doable to get it back if I could have slept a little longer. At least that’s what I want to believe now that I’m awake and sitting here waiting for the no-show irrigation guys.

I blame/credit fellow blogger, Bella, from Cul-de-Sac-Chronicles for reviving my interest in dream interpretations. (She has the most interesting dreams! I’m especially jealous of her latest encounter with Joe Biden.) Dream interpretation was a hot and heavy hobby of mine for many years and I worked hard at honing the art of remembering my dreams. I stopped doing that when my dad was in the early stages of Alzheimer’s and he literally could not separate his dreams from reality. After spending one too many hours trying to convince him that people were not having a party in his living room, that he’d left the TV on again and incorporated the sound into a dream, I gave up keeping a dream diary. It scared me to think someday I might not be able to sort out what is real and what is not. When my husband died my ability to remember dreams came back full force---with a lot of encouragement from his guest appearances during my nights. Now, it’s rare that I wake up without a dream lingering on the fringes of my mornings. If that's good for my mental health or not, it is what it is.

I have a nice week of activities ahead. I have a luncheon to go to at the senior hall, my Movie and Lunch Club later in the week, a vet appointment with my favorite guy, Levi the Schnauzer, plus two showers---one on each side of my family. But now, I have to brave the stormy weather and go to the grocery store. ©

10 comments:

  1. The storm came over and visited me around 9:30--I just put my ear plugs in and cleaned the bedroom. More coming this afternoon. I don't remember any dreams anymore and I am sleeping much better. I used to have a car dream--it wouldn't go forward. No matter how hard I pushed on the gas pedal, it kept slipping backwards down a steep hill. Hm-mm

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    1. Ah, the classic feeling powerless dream. I'm glad you're sleeping better. I wondered but kept forgetting to ask if you were still getting the night terrors.

      That was a bad storm around here! Lasted all morning and then some.

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  2. I hope you retrieve your car in an upcoming dream. Goodness, this is a picture of widowhood. Not always pretty, with us hoping, by God, that it grows on us. I do feel like widowhood is our second childhood, or adolescence, only without the rites of passage. No, on second thought, it has new rites of passage, and we're recording them here.

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    1. So true! I just hope it doesn't take as long as transitioning from adolescence to young adult...like teen years only we're in our 'hood' years.

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  3. Interesting ... I don't remember dreams either. I just wake up happy so they must have been good. Probably because I am not a deep thinker like you guys.

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    1. I don't believe that AW. You probably don't remember your dreams because you sleep deeper than we do and thus it takes you longer to wake up and your dreams don't get transferred to your conscious mind.

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  4. I dream about old houses a lot, and I'm always working on them or assessing the damage to see what has to be done to get them back in shape. Like your cave, the basement represents the subconscious. Even as a child, my dreams intrigued me, and even more so over the past few years. I actually still remember some of my childhood dreams. And now, with all these presidential dreams, I'm entertained with them. I couldn't believe my Joe dream. Ha! Coincidentally (or not), my father's name is Joe... and my brother's.

    You had a lot going on in your dream. I think it's about exploring things within yourself and outside yourself, like your involvements and activities that you hope will help you rebuild your life. It's all so interesting.

    I've thought about a dream diary, but a dream blog would be a good place to record them.

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    1. I would image there are communities of people blogging about their dreams but I enjoy the mix of reading about a person's daytime activities as well. It's easier to see where their dreams come from...or rather were we think they come from. No one ever knows for sure and that is what makes them so fascinating, isn't it. I think you nailed mine.

      Interesting about your father and brother both being named Joe! Have you ever tried "programing" what you want to dream about? I haven't tried it in years, not even sure I remember the process but I THINK it involves kind of chanting the topic as you fall asleep.

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    2. I'm going to have to look into "programing" what I dream about. I believe I've heard about that, but I've never done it. I haven't had a good flying dream for awhile. Once I dreamed that I was flying above a neighborhood, and then I really got into it and started swooping down and flying through carports and porches and through arches. Very much fun.

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  5. I got kind of good at posing a question to myself just before falling asleep and waking up with the answer. Simple stuff like 'whatever happened to that so-and-so I used to have?' Nothing deep like 'what is the meaning of life?'

    Flying dreams would be fun.

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