Possibly neither, I suppose.
I don't think I've ever thought of dreams to be entirely inconsequential. They are absurd at times, of course, but there always seems to be something that relates to current events in my world. For instance, last week I had a dream that I was part of "Desperate Housewives," which I watch every week. If I had been part of "Matlock" or something...a show I never watched and could tell you nothing about, that may have been inconsequential. But at the same time, it would relate to television, and I do watch a lot of that (I still maintain that it's "research" for my major).
I suppose one could argue that dreams are never entirely inconsequential, which leads to my next point...that they are trying to tell you something. I don't usually think that my dreams are necessarily trying to make me aware of a thought or feeling, but recently it's seemed the point. There are certain things that I lock away and try to ignore because the just aren't pleasant.
The first instance of this was my DH dream last week. At one point in the dream, there was a very tiny baby...like, fetal baby, with its tiny umbilical cord still attached. It was being passed around and I held it; it was small enough to fit in my cupped hands. The "dream me" had a thought "I'll never have one of these." That's a little odd, I feel. I mean, I've contemplated the idea of never having children...I don't like the idea of fucking them up or bringing them into a world that is toxic and in which they cannot thrive. You know...the normal reasons that most people shouldn't have children. But I was made wholly aware of it though my dream. I tend to not think about things like that...following the "we'll cross that bridge when we get to is" mentality, but this made me think (wretched, I know) and I woke up feeling a little empty inside.
My second example is the dream I had last night. The first part was about paragliding, snakes, and cats. The paragliding was a little unusual, but snakes often appear in my dreams, most likely because I am utterly terrified of them. Kitties tend to be around too...but those I like. The important part came later, when I was in a Denny's-type restaurant, having a late night dinner with my cousin Stephanie, and we were joined by these two guys...one of them looked a bit like John Leguizamo (and he was short...I watched part of Moulin Rouge recently). Then these other two guys came in, and I could see that at least one of them was holding a gun. I knew immediately that the guys we were with were their target, and I pleaded to whatever god there is that they leave my cousin and I alone. But I knew, all the while I was praying my heart out, that they weren't just going to leave us alone. I caught the eye of the shooter, after he had fired at the other two guys. It went into a bit of slow motion as he looked me straight in the eye and shot. I was hit in the neck, and the dream went back to realtime as I put my own hand to my neck, and clutched it there to apply pressure. The shooters were gone and we waited for an ambulance. I could feel tingling in my toes and I was light headed, but I could still talk a little and when it seemed that it was taking the paramedics too long, I told my cousin to call 911, just as a precaution in case no one else had (it made sense in the dream). The last thing that happened was that I was being wheeled out to the ambulance, I was still applying pressure to my neck and I told my cousin "If anything happens to me, tell...everyone that I love them." In my mind (dream me), I was thinking of more eloquent things to say, or more specific people, but I was feeling tired and I couldn't go on. In my mind I was thinking of leaving instructions for cremation, but I was drained and couldn't get it out. Then, there was an odd feeling of relief and relaxation and I thought for a minute that I was dying. It was at this point, when I felt myself being lifted (into the ambulance? away from my body?), that I woke up.
Now that's a disturbing dream, and I have them a couple times a year. But I can't help but think it's my mind punishing me for ignoring horrific events and memories that I've been willingly repressing over the past week, one of which is the Virginia Tech shootings. I just can't (or don't want to) deal with all of that, so I've been ignoring it completely. But now I can't help but think my unconscious mind is telling me that I can't avoid it forever.
Who knows. Maybe dreams are just random firing of synapses and are entirely inconsequential. The only substance is what I bring to them. I just can't seem to shake the "coincidences" and similarities to real life.
In other news, I have submitted my proposal for the Liberal Arts program, but that was only the tip of the iceberg. I have a ton of work to do this week, this weekend, and next week. I only have 7 school days left. Oy.
Oh, and I have to decide ASAP if I'm going back to the Park District. Against everyone's better judgement, I think I might be. There's something familiar and stable there...it's a sure thing. *sigh*