Communication through Dreams in the Recovery Process


recovery dreamsIt’s never too late to say “Happy New Year!”

For me the whole month of December and lead up to Christmas and then celebrating a new year is an amazing time of year for me and for many reasons. As a young adult I dreaded Christmas as it was a reminder of my lacking and longing for love. Christmas was lonely. Some years it was scary.

Since I began my journey to wholeness, Christmas and the few weeks following New Year’s has become a time to validate and acknowledge the wonder of life, the changes I’ve made and the things that I have accomplished. The holiday season has become about real love and real relationships and celebrating that love. January and the weeks following New Years are also about coming home to me and the journey of life. Christmas marks the end of one year and New Years marks the beginning of another and during this time of year I also celebrate and validate all accomplishments of the previous year and get ready for a new year welcoming the many more accomplishments and victories to come.  

And some times when I am pondering all of this wonder in my life, I have a healing dream;

A few nights ago I dreamed a very vivid healing dream. I dreamt that I was a professional basketball player. I was playing a very intense game and the crowd was cheering wildly. I saw myself from the outside of my body and I was also aware of myself from the inside where my thoughts and feelings were. I was dreaming, but I was experiencing myself as the dreamer as well.

The lights were bright almost too bright. I was out of breath and very aware of how much I was perspiring and how warm I felt. I noticed a faint sheen of perspiration on my arms and on my upper lip. My hair felt damp. I felt good! I felt healthy and strong. Everything was loud; the crowd, the announcer, my coach, the other teams coach; there was this feeling of intense excitement. And I noticed the brightly lit score board; the game was tied!

In a flurry of activity, a lot of dribbling and passing and what seemed like organized confusion, I scored the winning basket!

For those of you who don’t know, I am in my fifties. Since menopause became a big part of my life this last few years have struggled with being over-weight and although I have been fit for most of my adult life, I am not particularly athletic. I don’t actually know much about basketball, nor am I a big fan so I am not sure why that sport was highlighted in my dream. But this dream was not about basketball. This dream was about my life. This dream was about who I am today and how far I have come in my personal growth.

In this dream I was proudly wearing a very unattractive uniform in favorite shade of green and my hair was corn braided! I was wearing high-top shoes and green and white knee socks that matched my uniform.  As the dreamer, I was thinking OH WOW, my hair looks really cool but I think it makes me look older and that uniform leaves a lot to be desired but wow, I love those shoes! Hahaha.

In my mind in the dream, I knew that I was a really amazing basketball player. I knew that I was a leader on the team and an important member of the team. I loved my teammates. I belonged on that court; I fit in there. I took all the lights and cheering in stride; in the dream I was used to it. I was just part of the whole picture. I was comfortable with myself and with my gift. I had this understanding and awareness that this is just ‘what I do’ and I am good at it. I wasn’t self-conscious about my weight, my age, my hair or my uniform. None of that defined me in any way. This was such a powerful realization for me; this level of acceptance of myself is something I strove for, for so many years. 

I was aware of the cheering during the last few minutes of the game when I scored the winning basket and the feeling of pride and even honour that I felt. I scored the winning basket, but I didn’t do it alone. I was part of a team. I was trusted with the ball and I delivered.

The crowd went wild when the announcer said that I had won the award for the most valuable player! I could feel the heat from the intensity of the game and from the bright lights ~ I could see and feel the sweat on my body as my team mates thumped me on the back congratulating me for the MVP award. All my life I thought that being a star, having approval, or being recognized would make me happy, but at this moment in the dream (and then as soon as I woke up) I knew that it isn’t what I do, it’s who I am that matters. It isn’t what other people think, it’s what I think about me that makes all the difference. 

As I was walking off the court, an older man walked up to me and said “don’t you think you are a bit too fat to be playing professional sports”. And I looked him straight in the eye and responded “why would you feel the need to say such a discounting and disrespectful thing to me? What possibly could your motive be?” I was thinking about the expression “don’t tell me it can’t be done when I have already done it.” He looked like a fish out of water standing there turning red with his mouth opening and closing while he unsuccessfully searched for the perfect reply. I shrugged as I turned back to my teammates and forgetting all about that pathetic man I smiled my brightest smile and we walked off the court together laughing and talking about our victory.

I love to figure out the significance of my dreams. This dream wasn’t about basketball, but about who I am as a person. It was a validation dream. This dream reminded me that I am ‘the most valuable player’ in my own life. I am ‘in the game’ and part of the team and my team validates and acknowledges me and my worth in the overall game of life and so do I just as I validate their worth and contribution. This dream is about Emerging from Broken, this website, the work that I do in this world and the contribution that I make and the fact that ‘we’ are all part of a team here too. This dream is about the confidence that I have now, confidence that I never had when my life belonged to others. I heard the applause and I was comfortable with it. It didn’t define me; it was just part of living in my purpose. I recognized an abuser and called him on his nasty verbal put down. This is how I am today. He didn’t take my joy. He didn’t define me. He didn’t make me cry or even hurt my feelings because I recognized him for the pathetic bully that he is. He had no power over me; after all, I just won the game.

I am a star in my own life.

I am the most valuable player in my own life and I am as valuable as any other player on the team.

I live what I teach and I live in truth. I am a survivor and even more that that today I TRIVE and flourish in my life; I know my worth and that is the greatest reward that has been a direct result of doing the healing work and facing how the broken began.   

It all began with one single ray of hope that perhaps I could do it. It began with the hope that perhaps there really was healing and wholeness on the other side of broken and perhaps I too could have it. It began with ME taking that leap of faith that maybe, just maybe the answers really were inside of me, and they were!  

This is my hope for each of you in 2104. Thank you all for being part of my dream. Thank you all for supporting OUR team!

Happy New Year! See you on “the court”!

May the truth set you free;

Darlene Ouimet

111 response to "Communication through Dreams in the Recovery Process"

  1. By: Andria Posted: 9th September

    Your dream is very vivid and telling. There you are all weirdly exposed and most likely in pain and your mother gives you no mind. I understand the pain of the not caring. We know we are worth caring about.

  2. By: I will not shut up Monica Posted: 9th September

    I recently had a dream where all my teeth fall out and part of my upper gum is out, and my skull is exposed and I am showing my Mother, who is watching television on her bed and she refuses to notice and doesn’t care.

  3. By: Andria Posted: 18th November

    Hi Battlefields-

    Being estranged from one’s family is a very difficult thing to do. Even if it is the right and only thing to do. I had a dream last night with my parents in it. My father is still alive in another state and my mother died in 1999. I did not remember all the details, but it was very vivid.

    I believe that even when we know what we are doing is a good thing for us; it still plays on our minds and consciousness and perhaps the subconscious. I am not any expert in these things. Five years is not a very long time really. And what we have been through is abuse and trauma. The people who were supposed to care for us and have our best interests in mind treated us badly and made us feel like there was something wrong with us. Look at the word you used: TOXIC. It takes a long while to get rid of toxicity in the body. AND this is some of the most toxic stuff we will ever have to deal with in our lives. Please be gentle with yourself. I know how upsetting it is to have to dream about these crap people. But I think it is part of the healing process and it is different for everyone. And the process takes TIME. More time than we think it should, but that is okay. When you know you are safe and cannot be hurt by them anymore; it is something to be thankful for. I hope this helps you a little.

  4. By: Battlefields Posted: 18th November

    I know this is an old thread, but maybe someone will see this and have insight. For the past 10-ish years my eyes became opened about my parents and that how they conducted themselves was incredibly toxic. I still lived at home when I began to have dreams with a reoccurring theme: my parents are there, we’re in “our house” and it’s usually a place I’ve never seen in waking life, it’s usually old, and the floors are always unstable — I either fall through the rotting floor or I’m afraid I’m going to fall. I’ve been estranged for close to 5 years and these dreams continue. Any insight?

  5. By: L Posted: 13th April

    I had a dream about a week ago involving many snakes. Snakes in trees. I don’t know what the trees were about, but I looked it up and snakes are usually symbolic of a transformation of some sort. Perfectly sums up my life right now in regards to standing up to my family and beginning to see them for what they are.

  6. By: marquis (female) Posted: 5th April

    I had a dream the other day that my parents and I moved to another city in AZ and they were buying a house! I remember my dad claiming he wanted to buy his friend’s mom’s house but his friend’s ex wife is living in it. Then, long ago, he was on a mailing list to buy a home and that was very suspicious – it had nothing to do with surprising us with a home or anything. THis house in my dream was very nice, in a nice neighborhood, and mom complaining as always how it has stairs and wooden flooring everywhere.

    I still don’t why in these dreams that I am still moving with them! My mom has been saying for years she wanted out of this neighborhood since we moved to AZ in 96, claimed we were gonna move in 2010 after the fire incident but used that to get me to move back home, and nothing’s changed! I don’t want to move with them anywhere because it won’t happen. My dad keeps saying ‘oh we don’t have the money, not time to move. Move for what? Why should we move? It’s cheap, there’s nothing cheaper like $100/mo like it used to be in the 70s (yep, they live in the past), who says we need to move? Let’s wait a few years to move.’ Yep, that’s what he said.

    I want to be far away from them which is why I got a job and hopefully I can move out later on. Why do they continue wanting to live in dirty looking neighborhoods when my dad clearly has the money to buy a house or rent an apartment for over $1k is beyond me. He likes his hoarding yet complains when people peek in, complains how vehicles have been vandalize including his, etc there’s way more negatives in our neighborhood.

    I need more dreams where it shows me how I succeeded in leaving home and being happy (had those in the past but not those lately). Living with them has been hell since birth and I plan on leaving part time job or not!

  7. By: kelly savoie Posted: 3rd April

    I don’t dream anymore… docs made them stop… overwhelming couldn’t handle it…

    I am so Happy to be a Part of This Team… This team is a Good Team and is going to Free Me…
    I know my younger Sister is Happy that I’m here doing this now!!!

  8. By: Joel Posted: 17th March

    I think my latest dream wasn’t so encouraging. I dreamed that all the clerks in a warehouse store I was shopping at were vampires and that if you killed one, you became a vampire.

  9. By: DarleneOuimet Posted: 24th February

    Hi Everyone,
    I have been having trouble with the website this last week. The server had to be completely transferred to a new server and there were some problems with missing content on my site. Yesterday over half the comments (12,000 comments) were gone. This morning they restored everything from the 22nd so the comments from yesterday are gone. There are also comments missing from the 18th and a few other days which I can’t get back. I will be re-posting the most recent blog post which also could not be restored, this week. I am sorry for all the confusion.
    hugs, Darlene

  10. By: Light Posted: 21st February


    Love your idea for a small group retreat in Puerto Vallarta! I dream of blue skies and oceans, especially during the winter. Hope you are well.


  11. By: wendy am Posted: 19th February

    Hi everybody,
    Isnt it weird how some of us remember all dream details and yet people like my husband remember non.
    Maybe someone might have an explanation for a dream that I have constantly involving snakes which I am terrified of.Always well hidden snakes that grab my feet and wrap themselves around my legs biting me.Very simimlar dreams always snakes.Hope someone can explain. Thanks Wendy am x

  12. By: Alice Posted: 16th February

    Hi Darlene,

    Yes I do seem to have pretty strident dreams 🙂
    That’s great that the mother opened up to what she had done to cause emotional pain in her daughter. I don’t think mine would ever do that.

    And in a way I don’t want her to if the pain would be too great. At least the way things are she can pretend that everything is my fault and be relatively free of suffering from it. I used to want her to suffer every bit as much as I have but I don’t any more. Not having her in my life at this point is enough to support my own process.

  13. By: Darlene Ouimet Posted: 15th February

    Hi Alice,
    Wow, That is quite a dream!
    I know someone who’s mother didn’t want to lose her daughter and she actually tried to listen to her daughter. That mother felt such grief and remorse when she finally realized what she had done to her daughter and the emotional damage she had caused and it was very healing for both of them. (and a long process too!)
    hugs, Darlene

  14. By: Alice Posted: 15th February

    Another dream, this time with younger versions of my mother and my father in it. The details are slipping but I dreamt that my mother was opposite me, squeezing my face and asking me “But how could you have abused that child?!” And I replied that I hadn’t but that SHE had and she looked at me and said “No I didn’t, there’s no child here, you’re the one doing it” and we went back and forth like this and the pain I felt from realizing what I had done to the child was unbearable.

    Then I told her “Yes, the child IS here, right here”. “Where?!” she demanded and I pointed to the center of my chest and said “right in here”. The feeling of sadness was terrible and when I woke up, I thought I might be crying/or cry. I didn’t.

    I’m feeling a bit rattled. I mean I couldn’t imagine the pain someone would feel if they suddenly realized what they had done to their child, or any child for that matter. It would be overwhelming. The other thing I noticed was that the child seemed to be within me but it wasn’t me.

  15. By: Margaret Posted: 14th February

    Andria, umpteen times a day I’m wondering if things were ‘that bad’ or am I just over- reacting. When I manage to take a little step back, I know they were that bad and worse.

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