The beauty of our dreams…
Mama’s last job was as a Certified Nursing Assistant in a nursing home. She and Aunt Elaine worked together on the overnight shift at the nursing home where my Mamaw and Papaw were residents, and during this period Mama became a believer in “Moon Madness”, the phenomenon of strange behavior that happens near the time of the full moon. She recounted numerous stories of normally placid residents exhibiting bizarre actions and personality changes with no other explanation than the moon phase. No changes in diet or medication, no alteration in their routines or unusual visitors, nothing else to account for the changes except for the full moon. A coworker of mine who also worked in health care confirmed her own experiences with patients whose demeanor changed around the full moon.
Mom Cutshaw told me that she and all her sisters experienced strange and vivid dreams around the full moon. I am a vivid dreamer with strong recall, and even I experience increased number and vividness of my dreams at full moon time. It makes sense when one considers that the moon moves oceans and controls tides. Our bodies are made mostly of water, so it stands to reason that when the moon is full, our dreams and moods might be affected.
My sleeping dreams seem to be beyond my control, the effort of my mind to make sense of the world around me, my wishes, fears and insecurities. I have a number of recurring themes in my sleeping dreams. There is the “school dream” in which it is time to graduate or perform a recital only to realize that I haven’t been to class or a voice lesson all year; the “work dream” which can be either radio- or television-related, where I am in a control room about to go on the air and none of my equipment works. There is also the “naked dream” in which I am in a public place and either partially or completely nude (I think most people have a version of this dream).
An unusual recurring scenario in my dreams is that I am traveling using an inappropriate mode of transportation. For example, I am on the interstate with huge trucks whizzing all around me, but I am riding belly-down on a skateboard, or riding a 20-foot-high bicycle. A psychiatrist would probably have a lot of fun dissecting this particular scenario. I’m sure it must mean that something is terribly wrong with me!
My waking dreams are much more straightforward to me. I dream of winning the lottery, like most people do. I dream about what I would do if I had unlimited financial resources. I would pay off all our debts and all the debts of our family. I’d purchase vacation homes in peaceful places I’ve visited, and I’d travel to places I’ve always wanted to go. Sweet Pea would get every ridiculous man toy he could ever desire. I’d go back to school. I would continue to work in some way, volunteering or whatever else I wanted to do to keep myself useful; I just wouldn’t have to worry about making a living.
The question is this: how much of my dreams really depends upon The Lottery Fairy landing on my front porch? I think the secret of making my dreams come true is realizing that money doesn’t have that much to do with it. My most earnest of dreams is simply to live a life that matters and to leave a positive mark on the people around me, to love and to be loved, and to please God.