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Dreaming of the Open Gate

The Dream

It’s a typical day. Seems pretty ordinary. I’m outside and walk around the corner of the house to see our front gate standing wide open. A momentary panic suddenly washes over me and I rush into action. Where are the dogs? Did they get out? Where they stolen? Who left the gate open and why? Must find the dogs!

Dreams Road SignThen I usually wake up.

Sometimes, I’ve been so startled, I sit up abruptly in bed. I check and the babies are sleeping soundly. I usually can’t go back to sleep and I get up. Not so much because the dream rattled me but more just because I’m fully awake.

The dream has many variations. Usually it’s the front gate but some times it’s the back one. The seasons in my dream may be different but not necessarily the current one. Sometimes its even the house door standing open and I’m worried the cat got out. (Collins is an indoor cat but has gotten out on several occasions.)

We all have reoccurring dreams that haunt us, don’t we?

Does it mean what seems most obvious?

Yes, I can be overprotective of my kids. Yes, sometimes we find our gate is standing open. I don’t have the dream regularly, months can go by sometimes. I’ve had variations of this dream for at least ten years, when Cash and Roxie were just puppies.

The dream always stops with me discovering the gate, thinking I’ve got to close it and wanting to check on the babies. They never actually get out in the dream and I never actually close it in the dream.

I had this dream Friday when I was napping with the babies. That morning, the front gate was standing wide open in real life. This time in the dream though, it was the back gate– it wasn’t just open, it was like someone had driven through it destroying it completely. A new variation.

So I know what triggered the dream– but does it mean something deeper?

I researched online, more than a dozen dream interpretation sites; all saying pretty much the same thing. I couldn’t find anything specific (dogs getting out, etc.) beyond focusing on open gates in dreams.

Dream1In dreams, an open gate is interpreted to represent a transition, a change, or a new chapter. It could be a change in awareness or level of maturity; a passage from one phase of life, or from one situation to another. A closed gate symbolizes ones inability to overcome or not ready to move on. Gates represent obstacles in life. If you walk through then you are moving on, if you close it or it is closed, you aren’t ready or maybe you are afraid you aren’t prepared for what’s to come.

To relate this to my life– when I first had this dream, I was working in a job that while rewarding in many ways; was limiting my professional growth and creativity. Now, as I continue my search for the right job, I know that I don’t want to be in the same situation again. Interviews have not yielded a job offer. I’ve toyed with ideas of some options but nothing has presented itself as the right thing yet.

So if I was to interpret the crashed gate, I’d have to say it might mean there’s no turning back. I’ve evolved beyond the past and I’m ready for something bigger.

But what exactly?

It’s something to ponder, for sure.

Or, maybe it’s just what it is at face value:

A Dad’s fear, protecting his furry children.


The Power of Dreams

I debated about whether to write about this but here it goes…

I woke up this morning from one of my dreaded dreams… in it I was outside with my Boxers, Cash and Roxie. We were by

Cash & Roxie as puppies.

the side porch and Cash had a stroke and rolled over on his side with Roxie standing looking on. This is not an unusual dream for me. I dream about them a lot. The most frequent dream is that they are outside and the gate is standing open. Nothing ever happens in these dreams… just my unconscious voicing my inner fears. Cash and Roxie are 8 years old which is getting up there in years, for larger breeds. They are such an important part of my life I worry about them constantly.

So I lay there this morning, Cash snoring and snuggling my side and I just hugged him… petted him and scratched behind his ears, giving him a kiss before I got up.

I used to be really interested in dream interpretation until I realized most of it is a bunch of malarkey. Aside from a few reoccurring nonsensical dreams, most of the ones I remember deal with unresolved issues I’ve struggled with; or often people that were mentioned in conversation the previous day. Sometimes I’ll dream about someone or something from my forgotten past and I’ll spend hours trying to figure out what prompted it.

I’ve found some of my dreams are rather disturbing and others make me happy or peaceful. I’ve actually caught myself waking up, laughing out loud in/at my dreams.

So, two questions:

1) Do you dream in color or black and white? Supposedly, most people dream in black and white but I dream in color. When you ask that question, most people have to really stop and think about it. I found most of the artistic people I’ve asked, dream in color.

2) Have you ever died in your dreams, or has anyone else (or thing) died in your dreams? I never have. I’ve had falling dreams, dreams where I’ve faked my death or I’m at my own funeral listening to what people say about me… I’ve dreamed about people about to die or after they died… but never actual death. I’m not sure whether it’s an urban legend or what– but supposedly if we were to actually die in our dreams, we’d really die.

I’ve had some really crazy dreams over the years. Many dealing with the theatre and crazy impossible situations with combinations of people who have never met. But two reoccurring dreams stand out.

In the first, I’m either graduating from college, or finding out I never graduated from college (24 years ago) because of my Spanish grade. To this day, I believe my last semester Spanish teacher gave me a passing grade so I could graduate. (But I swear that woman had it out for me.) I think I’ve continued to have that dream because Spanish is something I’ve never conquered. I’ve considered buying one of those language programs to teach myself. Here I’ve been to Mexico twice and run in to Spanish-speaking people on a daily basis… I should really be able to speak it. Maybe if I did, that dream would go away.

The other most vivid reoccurring dream involves my maternal Grandma. In the dreams, we are having some sort of present day family gathering and she’s just there. Everyone is acting like everything is perfectly normal except Grandma is there. I had this dream over and over for many years. At one point, it would really upset me. I would ask my Mom (in my dream), “How is Grandma here and nobody thinks its strange?” I usually woke up before I got an answer.

After a few dreams and attempts to analyze it, I stopped asking the question and just enjoyed the dream, everyone together– one big happy family. It was never an upsetting dream but it did become a very peaceful dream. One that I noticed I often had when I was under a lot of real-life stress.

My Grandma passed away, unexpectedly, during my senior year of college in 1988. She was in the hospital for routine surgery, I was home for spring break– and I didn’t go to see her. I talked to her briefly on the phone, but I was too selfish with my time and didn’t go. No sooner had I gotten back to school when I got the call.

I carried that guilt of not going to see her– with me for a lot of years.

I always felt she was my guardian angel, watching over me during some really tough times in my 20’s. The dream always seemed to reinforce that she was with me.

When I was finally at a point that I was able to forgive my selfishness and stop beating myself up for not going to see her.. the dreams stopped.

I miss her… and I really miss that dream.


Today’s Pic of the Day: Thank goodness they marked it FRAGILE! With all the hubbub over the Post Office raising rates and cutting back services… I found the condition of this box from Kohl’s pretty amusing. Thankfully, there was nothing breakable inside!