Saturday Morning Message: How Do Dreams Help Our Grief Journey?
Author: Carol Lane
Dreams of our loved ones come to some of us and not to others. This is normal. If you have dreams, talking or writing about those dreams can be healing. This week, survivors shared their dreams and how those dreams helped their grieving process. They wrote about their continued understanding of the connection with their loved ones through dreams. We hope you will find their responses useful as you travel on your grief journey.
Remember, you can write to me anytime — to contribute, subscribe or if you have thoughts on what could make the Saturday Morning Message more helpful. I look forward to hearing from you. My email address is firstname.lastname@example.org.
Mother of Bryon
Answers from Survivors
Responses from Survivors to last week’s question: How do dreams about your loved one help your grieving process?
From Samantha, fiancé of Preston: In the beginning, I dreamt of Preston a lot, but for whatever reason, I could not stop crying. I used to insist that he couldn’t be here. That he had died. He would always try to hug me and tell me everything’s OK, but I wouldn’t let him. Then one night, I dreamt that he called me. I could see him talking on the phone and it was like he was at work. I asked him why I hadn’t heard from him in so long. He smiled and laughed. He said, “What are you talking about? I am always with you.” I’ve dreamt of him several times after that. Some are good, some aren’t. But I keep that particular dream close to my heart. It brings me peace and happiness to know that he’s always by my side. I’m very lucky that he’s come to me in dreams and I hope it never stops.
From Valerie, wife of Steven: My husband visits often in my daily life now, but also in my dreams here and there. The first time he came through to me was about four days after he died. He came to tell me that he was OK, that his pain was gone, and not to worry about him. He would be around to check on me and the boys from time to time if I didn't mind. He looked so good, so healthy. It was truly amazing! I didn't know at the time that this was going to be so helpful for me in my journey through the grieving process. He taught me to accept his presence and not to be afraid, because it was only him. I thank God he let me know that he was going on his next journey. After some time I was able to find the positive out of his first visit and again he was taking care of me even after his death!
From Deb, surviving mother of Beth: The dreams of Beth are fluid, not like an 8 mm film show. The first dream: I was standing at the end of a long white hallway. Everything was white- ceiling, walls, floor, doors, and it was very bright. I started walking down the hallway passing closed doors on each side. As I reached about halfway down the hall I noticed a door open on the left. When I reached it, I saw Beth standing just inside the doorway. She was dressed in all white— white shirt, white jeans, white sneakers. She said to me, "Hi, Mom. You've come to join us for the banquet celebration."
Then she stepped aside. Inside I saw a long white room with four big stainless steel commercial stoves going down the left wall. On the right there was a long banquet table with white tablecloths, white lit candles in shiny silver candle holders, white dishes, very shiny silverware, white napkins, and white chairs. There were two women— one cooking at each of the first two stoves. The first woman was older, gray hair in a bun, wearing a short-sleeved white mid-calf dress with a waistline and a white full apron, white stockings and white shoes. When she turned, I was looking at my grandmother who had died in 1975. The woman at the second stove had salt and pepper colored hair and was wearing a long-sleeved white shirt, white slacks and white cloth shoes. When she turned and smiled, I was looking at my mother who had died in 1999. Then Beth stepped back blocking the entrance to the room. She said, "You will join us, Mom. Just....not yet" and then she closed the door. I felt warm and content when I woke up. I felt Beth was trying to send me a message that there is a beyond and that we will be together again. As a family, when we had a party we would cook together. It was nothing to have two, three, or four cooks in one kitchen. I felt she was telling me that the 'family' continues even in the next realm.
Question for Next Week’s Saturday Morning Message
The question this week comes from Lalaine, daughter of Francisco, who is also one of the editors at TAPS. Her question is: When you are in pain — physical or emotional — what is the kindest thing you can do for yourself? We look forward to your responses.
Would you like to share a question or read how other survivors respond to a topic or question you have? I would love to gather some thoughts for future Saturday Morning Messages. It can be helpful to read and hear how others cope. I encourage you to reply to the Saturday Morning Message by emailing email@example.com. I directly receive all responses that are sent to this address. In order to have your reply included in next week’s message, it is best to send your answers to me by Tuesday morning of the following week. Thank you to everyone responding this week and those who read this message.
♫ Song for the Week
The song this week comes from Kelly, mother of Donoven. She wrote, “Donoven will always be remembered as a caring, loving and humble young man. He encouraged others to be kind, helpful and proud of who they are at no cost or persecution. He was loud and clear on his beliefs with everything.
My fondest memory of Donoven was the day he surprised me coming home for a visit from the Marine Corps. Receiving the biggest hug from him and hearing him laugh and roar when he tapped me on my shoulder while my back was turned to him as I made our family's coffee in the morning. I almost dropped to my knees hearing his voice say ‘Hi Mom.’ What a grand surprise! I was so elated with joy that I sobbed with love. He walked through the front door stealth-like. I heard nothing of his entrance. I suppose the Marine Corps taught him this. That does make me laugh inside silently. I will always cherish that special moment in time close to my heart. Donoven will always be remembered as each day passes. I miss his laughter and his grand hugs. I miss his beautiful handsome face smiling back at me.
A song that reminds me of him I actually heard while driving my 8-year-old daughter to school. The song is by Lynyrd Skynyrd called Simple Man.”
You can send me favorite songs for this song of the week section at firstname.lastname@example.org.