Dream Diagnosis


I am talking to Dr. Wilson, House‘s friend. You may know him as the Watson to House’s Sherlock Holmes. I am telling him how I don’t ever plan to get married, how I am happier being alone. “But Marian,” he asks with a slight frown, “haven’t you ever found value in connection with someone, in a loving relationship with another person? Isn’t there some value in the course of human history, that people have found someone – or many someones, in most cases – to support them, to care for them?” Even as I’m formulating my rebuttal, I’m falling for him. Okay, how do I ask him on a date, I think, without completely contradicting everything I just said?

Next, I am talking to Dr. House himself, and he is fully supportive of my plan to be alone. “Of course, you’re smart. People are kidding themselves when they say love is the answer. Love is just the brain going haywire. It’s all a big pain in the ass, really.” As we talk, I find myself falling for him, too. Now I’m really conflicted. Now I have not only to contradict myself, but I am in love with this doctor and his best friend. What to do?

I love this dream. It lingered a little sadly. I felt really alone, but strangely connected to these dream men. I wrote the details in my dream journal, but put off the interpretation work for a few days. (I work with a Jungian-based approached as taught by the craziest, most inspiring self-help writer, Martha Beck, in her book Steering by Starlight.)

I thought, duh, the meaning is obvious, anyway. This is all about how I am really conflicted about relationships, how I don’t know how to resolve my desire for independence with my idealistic desire for love. Nothing new.

But, no! I sat down (over lunch on my balcony, lovely steamy hot summer day surrounded by flowers) today and was delighted to find a real message in my dream. Exciting! To me, anyway. But one’s own dreams are always more interesting to oneself, so I understand if you don’t want to read past here. Thanks for reading this far!

So, here’s what my dream really says (and I’ve given a little glimpse here into the method, if you’re interested in trying it. You place yourself as the symbols in your dream. This one was pretty easy because there were only two symbols. The below is a shortcut, since I’ve been working with it for a while. I highly, highly recommend the above book for the full lesson):

  • Wilson:  I am kind, sympathetic, empathic. I am a good listener. I am a doctor, a healer. I am a facet of Marian’s Healer self, the nurturer. I represent Marian’s idealism. I am here to help Marian remember the benefits of an open heart.
  • House: I am cynical, stubborn, highly rational. I am also a healer, though I much prefer a rational approach to naiveté. I am able to break down symptoms and causes as they relate to scientific method, and to get to the root of my patient’s needs without letting them drain me. I represent Marian’s intelligence and higher thinking. I am here to help Marian understand the value of academic knowledge and rational thought.

These are aspects of my psyche. They are equal and separate, and they are both voices I hear every day, as I further explore yoga (and my consideration of becoming a healer -of sorts- on a path of therapeutic yoga) – the benefits of an open heart, the joy of spiritual peace, the actual physical benefits, and yes, the stuff that just sounds like complete hooey and I can’t quite buy into.

In my psyche, in the deepest regions of my self, I am learning to balance these ideals – open-hearted compassion and cold, hard analytical skills. Both are intrinsic talents of mine, though they sometimes (often!) clash. But perhaps, like House and Wilson, these opposites can learn to be friends.

I love my brain.


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