The CuriousPages Sketchbook

My father visits me in my sleep

Last night, I dreamt about my father. He died about sixteen years ago, and I had never before dreamt about him, not even when he was alive. It was as though he had come to me in my sleep to give me some message.

In the dream, my father arrived home, having driven a van loaded with house bricks. He needed a helping hand to bring in all the bricks from the van. I went out to the van and discovered that the bricks were loaded under its floor, making them difficult to get to. I drove the van round to the side of our house and began the work. I think he was intending to use the bricks to add some feature to our house.

The following day (in the dream), he had been at work all day and he arrived home. My mother was waiting for him. He was then going to take her to hospital in Bristol. I think the dream was set in Weston-super-Mare, the location of my childhood home, which was about forty minutes drive from Bristol, where I now live.

I offered to do it instead.

He said that I didn’t know the way, and it took a long time; he had better do it.

I said that I knew the short cuts; it would not take me long at all and that he was tired after being at work all day. I told him that it was better that I took her.

He agreed, begrudgingly, which was the best sort of agreement or gratitude that you ever got from him. But I could tell that he was really pleased that I was taking the responsibility, and that he knew it was better that I took charge of her.

So, what did this dream mean?

After thinking about it for a while, I realized exactly what it meant. And, strange though this might sound, I do believe that it was his spirit that had visited me to give me this message. It was not a coincidence that this dream had happened when it did, and had the message that it did.

In real life, about two weeks before, my mother had suffered a stroke. She phoned me immediately, for help. I was at her side like lightening. On that morning (it was about 5.40am on a Sunday morning) I made the forty minute journey in around fifteen minutes. Even though I truly believe that Western medicine is evil and, in an ideal world, I would not normally have let them near her, after assessing her, I felt that (for legal and ethical reasons) I had no choice but to call in the emergency services and to have her admitted to hospital, which we did. Throughout the following four days, I was with her daily, treating her with acupuncture and related techniques, until she was well enough to be discharged from hospital. In her home, Rhyan and myself supported her and treated her, until she was almost entirely back to her normal self, one further week later.

In hospital, they had offered her an unnecessary and risky operation on her neck, which, after carefully considering all the factors, she decided not to have. This was the right decision, as my expertise told me that this unnecessary operation would almost certainly harm her health and shorten her life, and my even prove fatal.

My sister, for her own reasons, had attempted to prevent mother from being discharged from hospital. She then went on holiday for a week, and when she got back, she resumed her campaign. I got home from work on the Monday evening and spoke to mother on the phone. My sister, for her own reasons, had managed to press her into changing her mind and agreeing to have the operation.

I gave up. I had tried to save my mother’s life and had almost managed it. My mother, like many people, was often her own worst enemy. If she had allowed herself to be manipulated into committing suicide, there was nothing I could do about it. I just gave up. And that night my father came to me in my dream. His message was that he was going to take her to hospital (in other words, he was going to care for her, to try to save her). But in the dream, I realized that he could not do that and that it was up to me to do it. So I offered to take her (to save her, to look after her) and, in the best way he could, he showed me his gratitude.

My dream was telling me to not give up. He could not save her; it was up to me to do it. “Please do it on my behalf,” he was telling me.

And some time the following morning, I guess I realized that I had to fight on; it was not right for me to give up. I should continue my fight to save her, even if my mother’s resignation had created a further obstacle.


7 September 2010


Another possible interpretation of this dream has occurred to me. Perhaps my father was saying that he was waiting there to take care of her once she died, if indeed Western medicine managed to kill her on the day of her operation, Monday 13th. And perhaps my intervention in saving her previously was just interfering in the natural order of things, as my father saw it. If this was the nature of the message, perhaps my action in the dream was reflecting the fact that I had not yet truly given up, and his begrudging acceptance of my offer was his begrudging blessing for me to carry on my own campaign to save her. Perhaps.

Or perhaps his message was that now that I had given up the struggle, not to worry, he was waiting there to take care of her once the Western medicine intervention had killed her.

And there is yet another interpretation that has just occurred to me. Apparently, the relationship between my sister and my father was a close one, an unusually close one in our family, since, as with many Western families, the dysfunction was such that there weren't any proper relationships in our family. And it occurred to me that perhaps he was getting impatient and had been preparing to rejoin her once she died. Over the three or four weeks that led up to her stroke, I noticed there had been a serious decline in her health and I had been expecting something serious to happen imminently, which is why I was not really surprized when the stroke occurred (on the Sunday morning when the phone rang, I looked at the clock and when I saw it was 5.35am, my first thought was that it was a sales call from an Indian call centre, but then I realized it was possibly a distress call from mother—the one I had been waiting for—so I leapt out of bed to take it). Anyway, because of this closeness between them, it occurred to me that perhaps my father had been able to influence my sister, and was directing her in her scheming to attempt to ensure that mother underwent this operation. Perhaps. Who knows?

If this last interpretation were true, was his message to me that I should stand aside and let things be, or was he begrudgingly acknowledging that I should go on fighting for her life? Who knows?

I had received one previous message from my father since he died. This was a few years after he died. I was about to change direction in life, since I had just finished one particular job (which had been good for me). He came to me via a spiritual medium whom I was talking to socially. In fact, until he told me my father was there and had a message for me, I did not know he was a medium. My father told me I should now begin studying acupuncture. I'm struck by the irony of this if it is the case that my healing skills were now getting in the way of father's plans to have his wife rejoin him.


12 September 2010



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