Finding my way in

I don’t often remember my dreams, but I recall this one in vivid detail, even though I dreamed it nearly fifteen years ago.

I am walking through my house examining the contents of each room. I am moving from room to room at a slow, easy pace. Kitchen. Living room. Bedroom. I turn a corner in the hallway  and find myself in a room I have never seen. It dawns on me that the hallway doesn’t actually turn a corner there, but there it is, and here I am in this room. It’s a spacious room, furnished ornately with plush sofas and complicated woodwork. The décor is dominated by various shades of green that evoke the sense of being surrounded by woods and grass, even though I am clearly indoors. I walk around  the perimeter of the room and acclimate myself to my surroundings. Reaching the far side, I find myself wandering through another doorway into another room. This room in turn leads to a third. Each room is successively smaller and more cluttered. The third room is a chaotic jumble of crates and boxes. I don’t know what’s in any of them.

I am excited by the discovery of these rooms. I feel an overwhelming sense of potential. I am keen to “move into” these rooms– to integrate them with the rest of my home. I want to open up the boxes and see what’s in them. And I  really want to rearrange the furniture.

Only recently did it occur to me to investigate dream interpretations about the appearance of new rooms in a familiar home. I can’t say that I’ve done exhaustive research, but I like what I’ve found.

Apparently a house in a dream is typically seen as representative of the psyche, and the discovery of new rooms is indicative that the dreamer is becoming conversant with new facets of his or her personality.

I’ve actually dreamed variations on this dream several times throughout my life. I don’t recall the other instances as vividly as the one I’ve described here, nor do I recall what was happening in my life when I dreamed those other dreams. But the “new rooms” dream that I do recall came at a time in my life when I had just come though a  prolonged physical and psychological trauma of life-changing proportions.

So the dream interpretation resonates. When I dreamed these rooms, I was indeed discovering spaces in my psyche of which I had previously been unaware. I was rearranging my mental furniture, and unpacking some mysterious new boxes. Someone who has known me all my life said of me at the time, “It was like she was a different person.”

I remember when I woke up after that dream feeling a deep disappointment to realize that the extra rooms were not real. I really had been looking forward to living in those new spaces.

It took a long time for me to understand that that’s exactly what I did.

*    *    *    *    *

This was a riff on today’s Daily Prompt: “An extra room has magically been added to your home overnight. The catch: if you add more than three items to it, it disappears. Hiow do you use it?”










12 thoughts on “Finding my way in

  1. Interesting dream and interpretation. In most of my dreams that involve where I live, the place I am living in my dreams rarely is the place I am living in at the time. It is either an entirely strange place, one that I’ve never lived in at all, or some sort of amalgam of different places I’ve lived in. I’ll have to figure out what that means.

  2. alienorajt

    Fascinating, Anna, and beautifully expressed. I suspect that your analysis of this dream is spot on. Oddly enough, I think that the dreams which have significant massages for us are often the most vivid – and the ones which stay with us for the longest time. xxx

  3. Dreams are, indeed, very important messages from our unconscious self. That is the real self, the spiritual self. And that self knows everything about us, much more than we consciously know. Recalling and interpreting these messages can be a daunting task, but one that is well worth the effort. I have written two sequential posts regarding dream work. You may want to check them out.

  4. Gloria

    I, too, believe dreams are messages from our higher self. I sometimes wake up in a distraught mood and wish that I could remember my dream(s) from the following night for the insight they might provide. Other times, when I can vividly remember a dream, I cannot always figure out the message. We always have the opportunity to start over, however daunting that may be. Re your response to sandwitch, I have to vacuum my internal real estate often, to make way for more positive thoughts. Thank you for this post.

  5. Pingback: Meanings Of Some Common Dreams |

  6. I have two recurring dreams:
    In one I am naked and back in SEAL training and trying to find my uniform.
    In the other I have won the lottery.
    Upon awakening from the first I am relieved; from the second, pissed off.
    Great post.
    P.S. I never dream about vacuuming.

  7. I have these dreams all the time. I am regularly discovering surprise rooms in houses that are not familiar to my waking life, but to my dreamer. Very often there is a moving in or out or away… Often there are views either from (usually through dusty, spider webbed windows) or toward the house (I see in in the distance and know I have to approach, to retrieve something I’m looking for). Just last night I dreamt of a house that was very cleverly built and although I thought I had been prepared to leave, I began to appreciate it’s design and wanted to stay. I used to write them all down, they’re so vivid. Clarissa Pinkola Estes wrote a beautiful guide to dream interpretation that I really enjoyed. I bought the audio version.. There’s a link to her and her works (she’s amazing, especially for creative women) on my links page… worth checking out her work… Any of it. 🙂 have a beautiful day!

  8. Interesting… It does not surprise me that house dreams are quite common. I almost think I should keep a little notebook by the bedside to track thumbnail sketches of my own house dreams over time. I imagine it would be telling and cheaper than a therapist. I don’t think I ever dream about my own house, but I do frequently dream about apartments where I can’t find the floor or hallway where I live.In a recent dream none of the apartments had doors which was particularly unnerving. I also often dream about living in large, complex houses that have entire passageways that I did not know existed and do not want to explore. I am sure that has some psychological significance!

  9. Pingback: Imposter syndrome | Muddy River Muse

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