FRIGHTENED BY THE WRECKAGE
A woman in one of my classes described her dream of looking out her bedroom window and seeing the wreckage of a plane in her back yard. The front of the plane was buried in the lawn, while the wings and back part were sticking up. Apparently the plane crashed nose-down when it hit. She was upset by what she saw, as it took up her entire yard.
(1) Impression: When I asked her for her first impression of the dream, she said that it was simply overwhelming. The wreck took up her entire back yard.
(2) Action: When I asked her about the action, she said she was simply staring, overwhelmed and mesmerized by the crash site. When I asked how she felt, she said: stunned, unable to look away. She did not want to look, but she could not stop staring.
(3) Feelings: She felt overwhelmed, paralyzed; unable to look away or move.
(4) Symbols: She had no personal connections with planes. Thus, it seemed the plane represented a wreck or disaster in her life. Then she explained that her partner had recently left her, walking out and ending the relationship. She felt her whole life was a wreck right now, and no matter what she was doing, she was always preoccupied with the break-up. Since the setting showed her looking out her bedroom window, I wondered if the dream was about her perspective, her point of view. She felt paralyzed in this perspective.
(5) The gift: This woman found the dream helpful, because it showed that she was dealing in part with post traumatic shock. She was stuck in her position of horror and unable to function well. Sometimes, in order to handle a situation and respond optimally, we need help in placing it in the proper perspective. This dream prompted her to visit a counselor for a short time, to get support sorting through her layers of shock, grief and loss. Eventually she realized that her partner had picked a fight with her to get out of the commitment of their relationship because he simply was not ready to grow up.
Six months later, when he returned to try and win her back, she was able to gently and respectfully let him know that she wanted more steadiness in a partner, and felt she would continue to search for someone who shared her sense of commitment and readiness for a mature partnership. Because her dream had helped her to have greater compassion for her own situation and to reach out for the support she needed, she was able to handle the situation more effectively, and to move forward with her life and her quest for fulfillment.
Dream Example: Lost in the Forest on the next page.