“Just always be waiting for me”

My Mom was in my dream last night. We were cooking dinner together in a large white kitchen. She had on a yellow apron, which was her favorite color, and it felt like she wasn’t gone. I was so happy to be with her, and we were talking and laughing as we put something together and into the oven. I’m not even sure what it was we were making, but clearly that’s not the point. When my Mom passed away, for the first weeks, and months, even, sleep could not come fast enough because I would see her almost every night. As time went on, she visited me less and less so the occasional night when she does enter my dreams it’s extra a special.

I feel that dreams are much more than just pictures we see at night while we sleep. Sure, some of the crazy out of this world dreams probably mean nothing, but for the rest of those dreams, they are messages and have meanings.

rawbrunettedreams

 

I have had vivid dreams since I was a small child, and I can remember most of them from about age 5 on. I used to keep a journal of them when I was younger, which I am sad I did not keep. My husband became accustomed very quickly in our marriage that every morning I would roll over and say “Want to hear what I dreamed about?!”. He’s a pretty patient guy to sit and listen to my dreams.

I have studied dreams because it fascinates me how complex my dreams are, and I wanted to know what things symbolized. For instance, once I saw Jurassic Park at the age of 8 it quickly became, (and still is), one of my most favorite movies. The T-rex, however, became a prominent terrifying presence in some of my scariest dreams. Being chased by a tyrannosaurus in a dream, represents your fears of becoming not needed, or not useful. When I was 8, my group of friends drastically changed, and for an 8-year-old who had been with the same friends since kindergarten, it was a big deal for me, and I was manifesting my emotions into my dreams. To this day, if I have a dream of being chased by the t-rex I will wake up in a cold sweat. Those things are scary guys!

Another example, is a bear. I have had recurring nightmares of being chased or killed by bears ever since I first went to my church’s girls camp when I was 12 in the beautiful Appalachian Mountains of New Jersey. It’s probably from the horrifying experiences we had every year without fail, of the black bears who roamed the mountains. Any of my fellow camp mates can attest to this as well. The presence of a bear chasing you in a dream represents you running from something in your life that causes you fear. This makes total sense to me because this was the year my Mom was diagnosed with terminal cancer. Clearly, I had a lot of things I was fearful of and had no control over.

I could go on and on. I have so many examples and crazy dreams I could write about, but it would take up so many pages! Ask me about it sometime – I would love to talk about my dreams!

Another thing I truly believe about dreams is that they can be messages or calls to action in our lives.

I started the search for my Birth Mom because of a dream. In 2006 I started to have a series of dreams about her. In the first and very vivid one, I was watching what was going on with her from a distance. I had no idea what she looked like so in my dream she was a blurry figure with shoulder length light brown hair. She was looking for something, and asking people around her if they had seen it. I quickly realized that the “it” she was searching for was my sister and I. When I woke up that morning, the dream kept running through my head over and over. I called my sister in Utah, (we lived in Dallas at the time), and told her about it. We decided that we were ready to try to find her. A few months later I had yet another dream about her. In this one, I was driving my car through a small town I had never seen before looking for my birth mom. I parked my car and started asking some locals who were gathered in the main part of town if they had seen my birth mom, although I didn’t know her name. They told me I was the “spittin’ image” of Jennifer, and surely I was one of her girls. Just a few months after that, my sister and I found her. It was fate, and another story for another post. When I told her about my dreams, and how I dreamt her name was Jennifer, (which it’s not by the way), she told me that in the hospital when she had my sister and I, she had named me Jennifer.

Chills right? Yeah, me too.

I have written before about my miscarriage I suffered in September of 2015. It wrecked me emotionally and I was a mess for weeks. About two months after, I had an incredible dream. In it, I was in a vast, white landscape that seemed to have no end. I was dressed in white, as was everyone else around me. I wasn’t scared or worried about where I was, in fact, I felt very at peace. I realized I was in the after life. Not necessarily Heaven per se, but some sort of post mortal life. As I searched the faces of the people milling around me, I locked eyes with a man probably no older than me. He was tall with dark hair and dark eyes. When we saw one another, we realized we knew each other. We embraced one another and shed tears of happiness. I told him it was so good to see him, and he said the same to me. I asked him where my Mom was and he said matter-of-factly that she was busy “working”. I was fine with this answer, because I was so happy to be with this man who I knew. He asked if he could show me around, and I said of course. He told me that in this place we were, I could think of any place in the world or history and we would go there. I thought of Shanghai, China and instantly we were transported there. We were in a market, and I could smell, touch, and taste everything as if i was really there. This was definitely one of the most vivid dreams ever. Never in my life have I been to China, but in that dream I was really there. After we explored the market for a while, we went back to the white place. He proceeded to show me some specific places in the afterlife, but I cannot for the life of me remember what he showed me. Maybe there is a reason for that? Who knows. We talked for a long time, and then he told me it was time for me to go. I didn’t want to, and began to cry. I did not want my time with him to be over, but he tearfully told me that he was good, and not to be sad.

I woke up, and the morning light was streaming in the windows. I laid there for a few minutes going over the very real dream I had just had.  A thought suddenly overcame me, tears welled up in my eyes, and my chest burned telling me it was true. I belive the young man in my dream was my child that I had lost just a few months before. My son was visiting me to let me know that he was okay and that he loved me. Remembering how long and emotional our reunion was only further solidifies that for me. I cannot wait until the day we do get to meet again, but for now, I know that he’s in a good place waiting for me.

Whether you are religious or not, dreams are something we all have. They can explain a lot of what’s going on with us internally, and are really very fascinating to explore the meanings of. Give it a try sometime! You won’t be disappointed.

 

XoXo,

Heather

The Raw Brunette

 

 

Timeout!

As I placed my unruly toddler into timeout today for the third or fourth time, (frankly, I have lost count), it made me think about the purpose of a timeout. For kids, a timeout is when we exile them into a corner, on a stool, wherever as long as they are separated from everyone and everything so they can think about what they did wrong.

When I was a kid, the preferred spot for timeout was to sit in front of an enormous framed replica of the Constitution of the United States. It’s a wonder I don’t have the whole thing memorized with how many times I ended up there!

My kids, usually end up on a stool.

rawbrunettehonesty

This is my toddler. He hates timeout with the fire of a thousand suns. But, he’s usually quick to say sorry for what he did, which is good. My husband and I realized that we were letting him get away with way more than our oldest two. Maybe it’s because he’s the baby, or that he’s our caboose kid, or that he’s just so stinking cute, but about a year ago we started doing timeout with him hardcore to break him of a lot of the bad habits we as parents let get out of hand.

rawbrunetteshaytimeout

This is my daughter when she was about eighteen-months-old. This is also about the age she decided naps were for the birds, so timeout stool hangs became the norm for quite a while. My daughter is nothing if not fiery and opinionated. It will be so good when she is an adult, but she tries me more than my two boys combined.

I think that timeout help us as parents keep our sanity as well. Breaking up the chaos for a spell helps sort of reset everyone, not just the kids. Once my kids are being unruly and ridiculous I tend to let my anger get the best of me, and often find myself regretting what I screamed at my children. Ending it all with apologies and hugs doesn’t hurt either. Hugs and kisses from my kids are what keeps me going some days.

Timeouts are essential in the development of children, (according to the science of Heather). I believe that if we just let kids get away with whatever they wanted, they would grow up to be horrible adults. If they got away with everything with no consequences as a child, what’s to stop them as an adult? Who wants to deal with a selfish, unruly, irresponsible, insensitive, just plain mean adult? Hmm, come to think of it, there are many adults that it makes me wonder: “Did they not get timeouts as a child?”  I’m sure you all could add up a list of those adults yourself!

Silly rabbit, timeouts are not just for kids! Adults need timeouts too! I love a good timeout for me. It could be anything as small as a bath after the kids have gone to bed, five minutes of quiet, or getting to take a NAP. I mean, a nap alone is worth a million bucks, but they are very rare these days for me. My mommy friends and I try to do GNO (girls night out) at least once a month, and my husband and I go on dates as often as we can get babysitters. It’s good for us to get one on one time without the kids to reconnect with each other on a romantic level and not just co-parenting partners when we are with the kids.

Timeout is not specifically just for parents either. Work, school, dating, family, friends, bills, just life itself is stressful. Taking some time to yourself, or with friends is essential for a healthy balanced life. Set some time aside every week, or month if you have to and go do what you love. I personally look forward to my time at the gym six days a week. For me, running and lifting with my headphones on and music blaring is a daily escape and makes me so much happier.

So, do yourself a favor, and find what makes you happy and do it! Travel, hike, run, paint, draw, write, box, cook, just find something that you love to do and make it a priority to take a timeout to do it. It will make you a much happier, healthier version of you if you take the time to reset yourself.

For now, I am going to remove my toddler from timeout. Again.

xoxo,

Heather

The Raw Brunette