And we’re back, dreamers. We’re loving all the tall tales of your unconscious, so keep ‘em coming.
If you want to write in, but you’re struggling to recall your dreams, we’ve got a piping, hot tip for you: decide to remember them. Yep, that’s it. Science suggests that if you go to bed intending to remember, you’re more likely to do so. Then, when you wake up, take a few minutes to commit the dream to memory by sharing it with your partner, texting a friend, or writing it down in a notebook. It’s a lot like training a muscle. If you work on it, your dream memory is gonna get swole, bruh.
You might also have a harder time remembering your dreams if you’re a cis man (existing research does not appear to include non-binary or trans folks). Children of all genders remember their dreams at the same rate until roughly age 14, when boys start to fall behind girls. And that might be simply because culture encourages girls to engage with their emotions and discourages boys, and that sort of intelligence is key for dream recall. So, men (and anyone else), if you’ve been waiting for permission to feel your feelings, this is it.
Let’s get to this month’s dreamer…
Good morning! Last night I had a dream that I was on a boat in a river ... the water was clear and I could see green vegetation growing on the river bottom ... I let my feet dangle off of the boat and as I floated downstream on the current a catfish appeared. One catfish then two then many catfish swimming around me and kissing the bottoms of my feet. Later, when I climbed off of the boat and onto the riverbank I peeled the skin off the bottoms of my feet revealing new, pink skin.
The thought of a gaggle of gaping mouthed catfish eating the skin off our feet should be a hard pass. Picture a cartoon character sticking their leg in a piranha tank and pulling out just the rattling bones. We’re good, thanks.
But we must admit, you make it sound tranquil as hell. One thing, we noticed you didn’t particularly specify any emotions you had during the dream. Just checking: it did make you feel something, right? The emotional component is important. We’d interpret menacing catfish differently than ones that felt like old school pals. So, we’re going to make some assumptions based on the language that you used, but trust that we do not want to make an ass out of you or ourselves.
First, let’s note that gorgeous, gorgeous river. Rivers often symbolize the life journey, and you don’t want your water murky, whether it’s in your dreams or coming out of your tap. But no Brita filter needed in this unconscious. We’d happily take an actual vacation there. You’ve got clear water all the way down to lush greenery which suggests a clear mind and fertile abundance. It’s little on the nose, as far as metaphors go tbh.
Then, the fish appear. Catfish kissing the bottoms of your feet is pretty sensual. (As in “of the senses.” Get your mind out of the gutter, Meredith.) It’s an act of devotion, delicate and loving. And then it turns out they were lowkey giving you a fresh pedicure? The whole thing sounds delightful. Did birds do your hair while spiders wove you a perfectly draped gossamer gown? We hope you got to the faerie ball on time, you ethereal sprite.
Not for nothing, but some folks dream about fish or water when they’re pregnant. If that is something that might apply to you, please consult a doctor and not us, the people who Googled “fish dreams meaning” on edibles last night.
So, how might you think about this dream as a whole? Consider what sort of era you’re in in your life right now. It sounds like you could be in a moment of calm stasis, or maybe a restorative state after a particularly grueling period of life. If that’s the case, take this time to attend to yourself, or allow others to attend to you. Keep it gentle. Take a walk. Make a really good smoothie. Read some Agatha Christie. Let go of trying to make the most of this time, and let those emotional catfish do their work, yeah?
And when you reach the end of this rebuilding period – your dream suggests you may be reaching it now – you’ll step onto land with some freshly peeled feet (once again, this dream was actually disgusting!), and you’ll be ready.