I have been studying and interested in my own dreams all of my adult life. In fact, I remember taking a course on dream interpretation -- and not magical woo-woo stuff, but the metaphors and symbols our mind uses in our dreams -- back in my 20s. When Barbara and I worked together, we would often start the day with our coffee and talking about our dreams. That seems so civilized now.
So last night I had a dream that I was trying to take a photo with a digital camera and it wasn't working. I finally realized that the lens/viewer was cracked. The viewer (or metaphorically the thing through which I view the world) was broken.
In the dream, I remember thinking (hey, good news pyschologically speaking) that I could go to Amazon and buy another camera. I remember "thinking" that is where I bought my current camera (true in real life) and I had the money (true in real life) so it would just be easy to buy a new camera.
This morning I posed this question to myself: What am I looking at in a way that is broken? How does how I "view" something no longer serve me?
I really couldn't think of anything -- and here I hope my friends reading this aren't gasping and saying "Is she KIDDING?" if you know what it is.
However, I did have a huge insight -- huge, at least to me -- this past week. I am troubled sometimes by how bad memories sometimes bubble out of nowhere when I least expect it. I can be watching TV, for example, and something will bring up a bad memory out of the blue.
Somehow, the same mental chain of events that brings up bad memories, brought up a good memory this past week. Somehow I started thinking of a birthday a few years ago when Lane was in New York and she said she'd take me out for dinner anywhere I wanted. I gave it a lot of thought and decided I wanted to go to this tiny neighborhood Italian restaurant which we did. The food was particularly good, we have a fantastic waiter, the place had just a few tables of nice people and the waiter made this little birthday presentation out of a dessert.
It was a very mild night for October so Lane walked me back to my place and we decided to sit outside. It was a beautiful night, and around 11 pm, all the dog walkers, who were particularly friendly that night, were coming out so we were talking to them, playing with their dogs, and just having this wonderful time. So much so that we continued to sit outside until Lane had to rush to get the last train back to White Plains.
As I'm thinking about this, the sane part of me said, "See? You have good memories too." Then I thought I have more good memories than bad ones. This might seem like a DUH moment; for me it was an AHA moment. It had never occurred to me that I had more good memories (which I have to say I sort of took for granted) than bad ones.
So maybe this dream was a reinforcement of how I view my life... through the viewer of all the good and wonderful things that have happened to me rather than just the bad ones.