I’ve been dreaming a lot lately; my brain has been in super-mega-overdrive for the past month, trying to process some deaths and life changes. The night my grandma died, I dreamt that I was in a huge gym that had an upper level, for standing/walking, that had windows to overlook the basketball court. I remember being on that upper level and watching a person with a gun basically just firing at anyone and everyone. There were a bunch of people frantically running in all directions, like in the cartoons when you turn on the kitchen light and all the roaches scatter. I distinctly remember a woman with long, blonde hair sitting in the rafters above the court trying to, I don’t know, hide? She was shot down. I wasn’t too worried about being shot, but I was terrified that I couldn’t find my pet bird – more on this pet later – so I was running around and searching everywhere while people were trying to escape the shooting. I went around a corner and there were three cartoon-ish birds standing on the floor peering up at me in desperation like, “please save us”…reminiscent of those ASPCA/Sarah McLachlan commercials where “In the Arms of the Angels” is playing and they show the most heart-wrenching homeless animal faces. Anyway, I couldn’t just leave these birds to die, so I called them up onto me – at this point, I realized that I was carrying a small suitcase, my laptop bag, purse, and my hands were all full. So, one bird perched on my shoulder, another on my forearm, and the third leapt up into my arm. Upon closer inspection of this third bird, I noticed it wasn’t a bird at all, but a small, black, curly-haired dog! The last bit of this dream that I can recall is that I continued the search for my pet bird while carrying all this baggage and rescued birds (plus one not-bird).
What the fuck?! I woke up in Prairie City, completely heartbroken, 6 hours away from my apartment and beloved pets, and without cell phone service. My best friend had checked in on my little fur-family the day before and sent me pictures, but dreams have a way of evoking very, very real emotions. When I was able to connect to WiFi, I begged my bff to check in as soon as possible just to soothe my irrational heart. All was well, in case you were wondering.
By now, you know that I place a lot of value on my dreams, so I googled the meanings and learned the following:
Birds generally symbolize your dreams and aspirations and/or freedom. My specific massacre dream seems to indicate my goals/aims in life that are unfulfilled. Having seen a woman getting shot and killed means that I need to let go of my ego (or the Big Snooze, to those of you familiar with the author Jen Sincero). The exciting news is that dreams of death generally signify a new beginning. A suitcase in a dream foretells of a trip ahead, possibly a very long one, and one that you must take with no excuses. A suitcase is also a symbol of untapped feelings or potentials – stored in a suitcase because they aren’t used very often. Additionally, a suitcase can also stand for older ideas or past actions/events that are hidden deep in your mind.
So, let’s talk about this! The birds are my goals/aims/aspirations. Cool, I’ve got some pretty clear goals… but in my dream, my most important bird was lost, I picked up three new birds, but one wasn’t what I thought it was! Huh… sooooo my most treasured goal (finishing my undergrad and continuing on to become a Physician’s Assistant) may not be the right path; I need to come up with three new aspirations (I’ve got a couple in mind); and one of those new aspirations won’t end up being exactly what I thought it was. All this supports the meaning behind the suitcase(s) in my dream:
I’m going on a loooong journey to shed my ego, create my best self, and find out how I can make a positive impact in this world.
Today I’m grateful for change.