DREAM: Recurring Highway Scene

I had a dream the other night that included a highway scene that was strangely familiar. I don’t remember other parts of the dream, only being on this highway.

There were lots of criss-crosses and ups and downs – kind of like a roller coaster for cars. As I drove along the tangle of roads, I got into a wrong lane, which forced me to exit at the wrong place. The only way to fix it was to circle back around the whole mess so I could get back into the correct lane so that I could take the exit that would take me to my intended destination. This loop I had to take took me miles out of my way and cost me a lot of time. I was frustrated.

The general message I get from this segment of dream is that I am off track and running behind.

When I woke from the dream I thought, That highway scene was familiar. I wonder where it’s from? I searched my brain trying to remember when and where in my past I had seen – and driven – that cluster of highway. Was it Binghamton, NY where I spent my mid-20’s to late 30’s? Definitely not. Was it Harrisburg, PA where I spent my teens and early 20’s? Possibly. It had the appropriate feel for that area of the country, but I couldn’t place it in my mind. I Google-Mapped. Nothing.

As I continued to ponder the origin of this memory, it struck me that this felt more like a recurring dream than a real place. And I believe that to be true. Now that I’ve thought about it even more, I am convinced I have dreamt about this jumble of highway not just once, but multiple times over a period of many years, and even though I don’t remember the remaining details of my recent dream, I get the feeling the other bits and pieces of the other dreams were much different. Not because I remember them, but because it feels that way. I am guessing this scene has played in my dreams at least three times, and the first two times were long ago – maybe 10 to 15 years.

What an interesting phenomenon, not just that my mind created this highway system once, but that it has reused that dream segment several times over many years! This is the stuff of…dreams. (Ha!) The mysterious bits and pieces…video clips that are strung together in seemingly random ways that sometimes provide insight into our subconscious – and sometimes just confuse!

Have you had recurring dreams over the years? Have you had scenes replay over a period of years? Do you gain insight from your dreams? I’d love to hear your stories!

Dream: Late For The Wedding

This was a dream within a dream. In the dream I dreamt that I was to be the bridesmaid in a wedding and on the day of the wedding kept getting delayed in one way or another…going down the wrong street, getting lost, passing streets and doorways that I should have been familiar with…and sliding in just in time, but other members of the wedding party had had to do much of what I felt was my responsibility as the maid of honor.

In this dream, I awoke and realized it was a dream and was very relieved, because I was, in fact, to be the maid of honor in a wedding. And as luck would have it, I proceeded to have the same experience as I had dreamt (in my dream)…getting lost, missing obvious signposts and doorways, etc., and getting to the wedding almost too late.

Peppered throughout my dream were references to people from my past with whom I have not kept in touch. One specifically was a guy who had reported to me at one time and in this dream (the second version, where I was supposedly awake), he was along for the ride, trying to help me, but not able to help which I believe is because I was “calling the shots” and not following his suggestions. He just laid low and let me go through my motions and was always there along the way, even as I arrived at the location of the wedding, obviously very late.


Lately I’ve been thinking a lot about my writing and the fact that I haven’t published “my book” yet…and that I’m now 50 years old, and hoping I’ll get my act together and regain my focus soon because I feel my time is running out. I’m 50. People in my “circle” are beginning to drop off, and I wonder if I’ve wasted too much of my time. Am I “too late for the wedding?”

In my dream people are depending on my and I’m not getting to the place I need to be. Is that a suggestion that I – in my non-dream life – am not getting to the place I need to be?

Lately the first lines of a poem I wrote when I was a 14 keeps running through my head. “Poor Sadie was a simple child, her parents died so young. She thought her sad life over before it had begun.” I wonder if it will become a self-fulfilling prophecy. I hope not.


Poor Sadie was a simple child, her parents died so young;

She thought her sad life over before it had begun.

She lived through all her writings, the thoughts she held inside;

But if someone should come near, her feelings she would hide.

She wrote of things that pleased her and things misunderstood;

Hoping that somehow, someday, her thoughts would do some good.

She thought so much her head ached, but she wrote down every line;

And if a thought was hidden it came to her in time.

As she grew her thoughts expanded with every passing day;

And she carefully thought each detail as she wrote her life away.

She wrote like this for years, though it seemed so short a time;

For life was such a word, that it needed more than lines.

And when her time had come, she noticed much too late;

Her words had helped no one, and age had closed the gate.

What she had left were feelings, in her attic to remain;

And so poor Sadie left this world as quietly as she came.

Dream: He Doesn’t Need Me Anymore

Though I don’t really know them, within the context of my dream, the people I was with were co-workers. We’re traveling back to (office? party location?) where we started our trip and we’re all in a yellow school bus. As we drive along, I see along the side of the road, my ex “John,” who (in my dream) I know has some sort of debilitating disease – something like MS – so that he’s in a wheelchair – slowly losing muscle control over a period of time. When he was healthy he was very athletic (in real life he’s an avid bicyclist).

In this roadside scene, John is out for a “ride/race” in his wheelchair and has gotten as far as he can considering the road conditions, so he has stopped and making his way into some other sort of box with wheels contraption, which I understand to be a kind of transfer vehicle to get him past whatever is in his way in the road. There are people there helping him. (That is the key message here, by the way.) As we pass him in our bus I see him, but don’t tell anyone I know him or that I’ve noticed him. But…I immediately begin to worry about him and feel guilty about not being there for him.

After we arrive back to our base location (office/party location) I find myself on my own – other co-workers are congregating in another area of the space – so I feel like it will be safe for me to “wander” downtown to the area where I expect John to be…so I can check up on him and make sure he’s okay. I know where he lives – in an old apartment downtown. The town in my dream is older and the apartments seem a bit run down there. John lives in a second floor apartment – over a bar. (Interesting, since in real life “John” is an alcoholic.)

As I head down the street to search out John, I’m taking a “back alley” or back hallway kind of route. It’s kind of a street fair atmosphere…there are lots of vignettes of carnival-like things and I stop at some on the way, but I’m mostly looking in from the back side of them or wandering through them, but not really participating. I have a sense of being invisible/behind the scenes so the people who are participating don’t know I’m there.

About half way there I run into a (true) former co-worker of mine. I see her inside one of the carnival vignettes and think to myself that…since she’s alone…maybe it would be safe to reveal myself to her so I would have someone to talk to about…things. I approach her and we begin talking…about nothing in particular…and we continue moving together down the street, but now we’re actually in the streets as we go.


I don’t think I ever make it to John, but the general feeling around this dream was that I was feeling guilty for not “being there” for John, but at the same time, I knew there were other people helping him along and so he was doing just fine without me.

Dream: My Art Show

I’m going to have an art show with just my work in my house, which has several rooms in it. There is a large main room where the art will be displayed – on a large table placed in the center of the room. I have a couple paintings on easels there but have not fully set up my display, as I have other details to attend to…food, etc. to be coordinated. I have “hired” another artist to stay in a smaller room where guests will enter and leave and presumably, pay for their purchases. He arrives and I leave him to get situated in that space. Meanwhile I’m still busy with lots of detailed related to hosting people in my home but have not yet gotten my art set up. People are arriving and now I’m busier than ever.

In my frenzy I make a pass through the small “check in / check out” room and find that the artist has set up his artwork on the tables in the room where he is supposed to be setting up for guest sign in and cash out. I am furious and choose to relieve him of his duties, presumably sending him on his way. The dream never gets that far, but as I’m arguing with the artist and reprimanding him for his actions I am fully aware that I have not gotten my own display set up and people are beginning to leave without having even viewed my art.

I spend so much time always preparing the “business” side of things that I don’t get around to creating my art, much less finding opportunities to display it.

Dream: Just Ask For Something Different

I’m in a looping dream – like the movie “Ground Hog Day.” It is a short loop that begins with me running from a “bad guy” and ends with him shooting me in the foot – or more specifically, in my toes. Every time. Each time I cycle through this dream loop I know what is going to happen but feel powerless to change it. I just repeatedly go through the anxiety of knowing the bad guy is going to shoot me every time.

After several rounds of this I finally do something different. This time I’m near the end of a loop (just before the bad guy shoots me) and I say out loud, “anything different, just so I don’t get shot.” This time I get away from the bad guy before he shoots me. I wake up to spasms in the toes on one foot.

When my life is in an endless loop of the same thing over and over, all I have to do is ask for something different. I know it works because I’ve done it before. So, why am I hesitating to do it again?

The most recent (significant) example of this working for me was last summer. Shortly before I gave notice at my job I spent one evening saying over and over, “I don’t care what kind of work I do, as long as I enjoy it.” A few days after I gave notice my manager pulled me aside and offered me another role on our team – one that could potentially make a difference in at least some of the areas that had caused me to feel frustration.