I dream a lot at night when I’m asleep and I do mean A LOT. Sometimes my dreams are precipitated by whatever happened prior to going to sleep. And sometimes it has nothing to do with that whatsoever. Often, I can’t even explain why I’m dreaming about what I am. But there is one reoccurring thing that I have had in a vast majority of my dreams over the past nine years or so that connects to my 12 Step recovery life and I’ll get to that in a minute.
Let me start out first in saying, I believe that many dreams have meaning. I also believe that many dreams hold no importance as well other than our bodies simply processing through various electrical stimuli and energies. There are dreams I wish I could remain in, where I’m playing sports again, running, jumping, and the like, and those of the sexual variety that probably will never happen in real life. And then, there are some dreams that absolutely would be classified as nightmares I hope to never have again.
Nevertheless, I have had messages come in dreams that have truly helped me on my path in life. Sometimes they’ve been answers to prayers and sometimes I believe it’s my inner guidance moving me forward on my spiritual journey. I was told long ago that any dreams we vividly remember from days to weeks to months and sometimes even years are ones that carry important guidance for us on our spiritual journey in life. I’ve most definitely seen proof of that with life playing itself out in front of me. There are countless books and reading materials out there on dreams, some having great depth and helpful insight, while others have felt like they were just trying to make a buck off of people.
Many say they don’t dream, but I tend to think everyone dreams, they might just not be as open to remembering them. Before I ever slowed down in life, that is before I learned meditation, I rarely remembered any of my dreams either. When the mind is racing as soon as one awakes, where one finds themselves thinking about this or that, it’s quite easy to forget about any specific dreams that played themselves out the night prior.
Regardless, back to the one reoccurring thing I continue to notice in a number of the dreams I’ve had over the years. Whenever my dreams are bordering on the nightmare variety or just dealing with themes that aren’t so pleasant such as sickness, things chasing me, people dying that I care about, etc., I’m consistently calling out to God for help in the matter. Sometimes I’ve even woken myself up as I’m literally shouting prayers out to God in real time. Why this is important to me and something I’m thankful to see, is that I realized, even on my subconscious level, I’m seeking something Greater than myself for help in life.
Why that’s important is this. Coming into 12 Step recovery many years ago, I never sought the help of anyone but myself. I thought I could do life all on my own and typically ran on self-will. It didn’t get me very far in life though and honestly, got me in more hot water than not. But, going through the 12 Steps and doing my best to live out the 12 Steps now has changed that. It’s helped me to see the importance of turning my will and life over to a Higher Power, something I really try to do every day. While some days are better than others with this, seeing myself seek God in prayer in a number of my dreams has been enough of a reminder that my 12 Step recovery life has been working on some level.
To be totally frank, turning my will and life over to something far Greater than myself is the ONLY thing that has kept me clean and sober from all of my past addictions and it’s the only thing that will continue to keep me sober from them for the rest of this life. That’s why I’m thankful for the reminder that even in my dreams, I’m still looking beyond my ego and self-will and asking God for help, proof that my 12 Step recovery is most definitely working and deeply within me at that…
Peace, love, light, and joy,
Andrew Arthur Dawson