Monday 27 February 2017

My Wife's Waking Dream About Her Broken Shoulder

 photo courtesy of

An excellent way to discover how much you acknowledge the power and value of the waking dream is when it affects your own life. As I’ve said before, the waking dreams most important to pay attention to are the ones that leave you unsettled or shaken. In those cases, since these are incidents in “real life,” the tendency is to become immersed in the drama and to forget to step back and look at the event as a dream.

In our family, that doesn’t happen. Waking dreams are taken seriously, and the more they affect our day-to-day activities, the more carefully they are studied.

That was definitely the case last month when, shortly after some terrible weather, my wife and I were taking an afternoon walk. She suddenly slipped on the ice, went down hard and ended up with a broken shoulder. After the trip to the E.R, and after she was settled at home with some “lovely”—if potentially addictive—opioid pain killers, we knew we had work to do. We took our time, trying to let the experience settle and waiting for the jitters to leave us both. But we also knew that there was no hurry. She couldn’t use half of her upper body, and it was going to be a long, six-weeks of curtailed activity before she could even begin to function normally.

Rather than sit down and work through the dream in one session, we allowed ourselves to ponder our memory of the accident over the next days and weeks. As insights came, we tested them against each other, and over time, we put together our understanding of what had occurred and why.

Life does not, arbitrarily and sadistically, attack innocent people! If you’ve been “victimized” by an unfair-seeming, unpleasant event, it’s time to look at your own circumstances, your own attitudes, the feelings you are carrying around, and your own sense of inner balance. That’s the key to your eventual understanding of the incident.

My wife’s dream in her own words:
We were out taking our afternoon walk. Even though it was cold, it was also crisp, the sun was out, and I love the brightness of new fallen snow. We were looking at the natural beauty around us, but we were also talking animatedly about an exciting book we were both reading, which we found stimulating. Suddenly, with no warning, both my feet went out from under me, and I fell, face downward, hitting my left shoulder hard. I was completely stunned for a moment. Then, when I could finally get back up, you and I both noticed that my left arm was hanging at a really odd angle—unnatural. We went to the E.R. they x-rayed and confirmed a break. They made a follow-up appointment with an orthopedic surgeon (although they didn’t think I’d actually need surgery). They sent us home with pain killers and told us how lucky we were that I hadn’t hit my head.

More on Wednesday.

On March 11 & 12 I will be participating in the Body Mind Spirit Expo in the town of Hillsboro, just west of Portland, Oregon. I will be lecturing and helping with dream interpretations. Click on the Events page for details.

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