radiant health

Hi Rosa -

I think your dreams are fairly typical fear dreams - caused not only by the stress that having a young child places upon anyone, but also by the recent scare that you had concerning your own health - the diagnosis of congestive heart failure during pregnancy.

I suspect that your recent diagnosis of heart failure - even though it is not an enduring condition - has nevertheless made you confront questions of your own mortality. I think each of your three dreams can be interpreted from this framework. In the first dream you feel “alone and desperate” - which is how anyone feels when they first learn of a potentially life-threatening condition. I think your first dream also reflects feelings of “it’s not fair.” The punishment certainly does not fit the crime, (twenty-five years in prison for a traffic violation) and you are feeling violated in advance.

The second dream also appears to reflect a natural concern that you may now have about performing any especially strenuous activities - including throwing your 10 month old into the air - that might aggravate your heart condition. This dream, as does your third dream, also reflects your concerns about what will happen to your daughter should you become ill or die. In the third dream, however, it is your husband who has died suddenly (the theme of vulnerability continues), and you are left to confront the task of raising your baby girl without his help and support.

Freud said that there is no greater fear in the mortal psyche than awareness of one’s own mortality. You are a young woman and it is possible that this is your first “close-to-home” encounter with the “man in the black-hooded coat” - the Reaper. I say “close-to-home,” because of course all of us are familiar with death on an intellectual level. We see death all the time in the newspaper, on TV, and we hear of our parent’s friends who have died. But realizing that death is something that is going to happen to us - and the truth is that we really don’t know when - is a very different level of maturity. It usually happens when we or a close friend who is close to us in age becomes seriously ill.

I think awareness of the fragility and fleetingness of life can be a very positive addition to the personality. It encourages us to live more in the present, to realize that this is our life now - and to not spend too much time preparing some plan we have for the future. It helps us to appreciate what we have now - because we know that, at some point, we won’t be here anymore.

People often expect dreams to foretell the future. In your case, I suggest that your dreams (like most dreams) simply are telling the present. That is, I do not believe that your dreams are precognitive: I do not believe you will go to prison, that you will have a heart attack, that your baby girl will die, or that your husband will die in a car accident. To the contrary, you have had a scare with your heart, which has made you realize that your plans, dreams, and responsibilities could all be dramatically impacted should you lose your health. I encourage you to read up on your condition and to take a pro-active course in managing your health - by watching the foods you eat and performing an appropriate amount of regular exercise. I think you want to do everything you can to be healthy and stay healthy. Perhaps this scare will even turn out to be a blessing in disguise, by causing you to be aware of health issues sooner in your life that you otherwise would have. We wish you radiant health in your future!

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