Finding a Dream’s Meaning

An animal communicator reveals her first remembered dream and analyzes the symbolism.

| January 2015

  • "At the bottom of the stairs is an open room, and in the middle of the room is a big, white dog lying on a pillow bed."
    Photo by Fotolia/hadkhanong
  • "Dreaming With Polar Bears" by Dawn Baumann Brunke shows us how dreamwork can help us forge deeper connections with the natural world.
    Cover courtesy Bear & Company

Dreams speak to us. Through lucid dreaming, we open to conscious interaction with the surroundings, happenings and living beings within the dreamscape. In Dreaming with Polar Bears (Bear & Company, 2014), animal communicator, Dawn Baumann Brunke tells of a lucid dream that triggered the realization that not only was she dreaming of a living polar bear, but also that polar bear was dreaming of her. Brunke reveals techniques she learned to enter shared dreamscapes and form meaningful dream relationships with other species. In the following excerpt from chapter one, the author analyzes her first remembered dream of a white dog in a basement.

The First Dream

The first dream I can remember occurred when I was two years old. Most likely the distinction between dreaming and waking hadn’t yet lodged in place, and that’s why it didn’t seem like a dream at all, but a perfectly real event.

My parents and I go to visit some neighbors, a man and a woman. They don’t have children, but the woman tells me that I can go play with the dogs in the basement. As the grown-ups walk into the living room, I climb down the basement stairs, step-by-step, alone.

At the bottom of the stairs is an open room, and in the middle of the room is a big, white dog lying on a pillow bed. She smiles, welcoming me, and I go to lie beside her, my head near her belly. I close my eyes. When I open them, there are two more white dogs, one on either side of me. They are smaller than the first dog, but a bit bigger than me. I snuggle between the three dogs, feeling their soft fur, smelling their warm, doggy skin, and I am very happy.

My parents call to me from halfway down the basement stairs. They tell me it is time to go home. “Or would you rather stay with the dogs?” they ask. I consider this and tell them I will stay, that I would like to live with the dogs in the basement. They laugh, as do the neighbors. Then my mother comes down the stairs, takes my hand, and leads me home.

Several times after this event, I asked my parents if I could visit the big white dogs. I wanted to see them again, to lay with them on the pillow bed. But my parents shook their heads. They did not understand my question. Eventually I stopped asking and the incident was forgotten. Many years later, as a teenager, I remembered the dogs. Curious about this small mystery from my past, I asked my mother about the memory. She could not recall any childless neighbors with big white dogs. Even if there had been, she added, did I really think she would have allowed a two-year-old to go alone into a basement full of dogs? “It must have been a dream.”

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