“I’m a daydream believer.” (and a night dream believer, too.)
Some of our most creative moments occur when we sleep. It has been said that L. Frank Baum created The Wizard of Oz from a dream that he had. Many of my creative urgings have begun with dreams—both daytime and night time dreams. Day dreaming and night dreaming are spaces where our imagination plays and when we pay attention, our dreams provide us with understandings of what is needed and important in our lives.
My desire for play has come out of this dream space. When I was younger, playfulness and lightheartedness where part of my genetic code, it seems. I remember walking through a department store with a boyfriend in my early 20’s. We were playfully moving through the store, interacting with sales people and customers and having fun being together. His comment to me, one that I have thought about at pivotal moments since, was that one of the things he loved about me was my easy-going nature and how easily play came for me. Over the years, with seriousness and life, I became somber. But somberness isn’t in my genetic code—playfulness is. Life created the seriousness. I was born with the playfulness—as we all are.
Last year, at the end of a fairly harried time, I noticed that many of my dreams had a theme of my playing or not being able to play. I spend time in the mornings writing about my dreams and the theme of playfulness began to fill not only my night time dream world, but my daydreams as well. I wrote about play in my dream journal and as 2014 approached, I knew that ‘Playfulness’ was a word that I needed to explore and understand in my life. Choosing the word “Playful” for my word focus for 2014 was quite easy. Choosing to reclaim what was already mine, as was seen in my youth, has been a part of this year’s quest.
One way that I do this is by dreaming and noticing my dreams. By honoring my dreams. How do I do this? First of all, I work to remember the night dreams. In the morning, when I wake up, the first thing I do is write—often totally stream of consciousness. I write about my dreams. And then I reflect on them, thinking about what messages my dreams have and what they have to offer me in my waking life. And I actively pay attention to my day dreams. I use these thoughts to help shape dreams for my life. “Play-titudes” has actually been born of this process.
Eleanor Roosevelt said, “The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams.” So risk to dream. Play with dreams. Dream big. Find the nuggets of beauty in your dreams and build on them to move you into your future. Pay attention to night dreams and to day dreams. And who know where they will take you. My guess they will take you to a place that is pretty grand. Baum’s dreaming took Dorothy to Oz. Unlike Dorothy, I don’t want to wake up tomorrow and say, “It was only a dream.” Like Dorothy, though, I want my dreams to take me home!
PLAY-TITUDE #23: Let creativity happen in dreams
Thank you to Two Writing Teachers for dedicating space and time for writers and teachers of writing to come together to share ideas, practice and life experience.