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Purpose of Recurring Dreams

Updated on March 19, 2012

This article is written to answer to question: "Have you had recurring pleasant dreams? What are their purpose?

Recurring dreams are a fascinating subject. I had a recurring dream for many years after my grandfather died. He died when I was four. My grandfather always made me feel special. He'd drive to my house to visit any time I asked and would show me off to his friends.

Even though my parents divorced a few years later and my grandfather was my father's father, my mother and mother's side of the family still talk about how wonderful he was. It's been over thirty-five years since his death. I think it's pretty remarkable that his in-laws still talk about what a nice person he was. My mother still tears up when talking about him, as do I.

The recurring dreams that I had throughout my childhood showed me as a very young girl standing on the banks of a stream. I was scared. Then, my grandfather is standing next to me. He takes my hand and helps me across the stream. I wake up when I am safely on the other side. I always believed that the purpose of that dream was to show me that my grandfather will always be with me through the trials of my life.

This is a villanelle poem that I've written about the recurrent dream:

Dream From Grandpa

Facing the raging stream, the scared girl stands

overwhelmed by helplessness and fear.

Feel the love and support of Grandpa’s hand.

Water churning, pounding the rocky land

creating deafening noise that draws tears.

Facing the raging stream, the scared girl stands.

Over algae-slick rocks, the wet path spanned.

Small footsteps flounder with the current near.

Feel the love and support of Grandpa’s hand.

Forgetting to breathe, she holds his right hand

waiting for the distant bank to appear.

Facing the raging stream, the scared girl stands.

His grip steadies her faulty stance. Doubt banned

with encouraging words for her to hear.

Feel the love and support of Grandpa’s hand.

As nervous slumber turns peaceful and bland,

the message delivered by dream is clear-

Facing the raging stream, the scared girl stands.

Feel the love and support of Grandpa’s hand.

Some may think that the dream wasn't pleasant since I was scared of the stream during the dream, but I always found the dream to be reassuring. I have not had the dream since late adolescence, but in the recurrent dream, I was always that scared little girl.

Many people have differing opinions about recurrent dreams. I have heard others who say that they may be messages from people we loved who have passed on. I'm not sure I completely believe that my dream was from my grandfather. The dream could be a gift from God or my mind's way to try to deal with my grandfather's death. Whoever was the source of the recurring dream, I feel that it was a message that I needed to hear at different times in my life.


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    • cloverleaffarm profile image

      Healing Herbalist 6 years ago from The Hamlet of Effingham

      Wonderful hub. I think recurring dreams are trying to send us a message. For years, I would have the same dream of not having enough gym credits to graduate high school. This was never a problem. I couldn't figure out why I kept having this dream until years later. My high school sweethearts name was Jim. We broke up, and there was never any resolution until 1998. After we got back together, I never had those dreams again. I think it was my subconscious trying to tell me that I needed to see him again. You can read the memoir I wrote about him if you like. Be sure to have a tissue handy.

    • profile image

      Charlie 6 years ago

      Nice Hub, Patrice...touching, meaningful, intense, and uplifting. I guess we all have dreams we are "fond of", even if some are about some of the sad experiences we go through. They say that dreams are often experienced so we can be healed and uplifted...I know I've had such dreams myself; and I've been very thankful for them too! Well done!

    • Sheila Wilson profile image

      Sheila Wilson 6 years ago from Pennsylvania

      Thank you both for your kind words and for sharing your thoughts about recurring dreams.

    • profile image

      PWalker281 6 years ago

      What a lovely poem!

      I think recurring dreams have an important message to impart that our waking selves aren't aware of. Once we internalize the message, we no longer need them and they cease.

      Perhaps the dream was telling you as a child that, despite the fears that life confronts you with, loving support (symbolized by your grandfather) is always "at hand." Having internalized this "truth" as you grew into adolescence, the dream had served its purpose and you didn't need the reminder any longer. Just my take on it.

      Voted up, beautiful, and interesting

    • ChristinS profile image

      Christin Sander 6 years ago from Midwest

      I loved this - what a great poem. I miss my grandfather a lot as well. He raised my like a dad and passed when I was 14. I have dreamed of him several times and I felt with certainty in mine it was an actual visit because he told me things that hadn't happened yet and then they did... Thanks for sharing this hub and your beautiful poem/tribute to your grandpa :).