I have long been interested in Carl Jung and the imagery of dreams. But I am not so fortunate to have regular visits from vivid and memorable dreams.
Perhaps it is because I don't take the time to record them when I wake, or because it simply hasn't been a priority to look into my psyche and soul in recent times.
About two months ago, on a Saturday, I woke from an odd dream. I did not record the details and they have faded away from my memory leaving only an imprinted feeling. But that morning I acted on the impulse the dream had given me.
I went online, even before my morning shower (unheard of !) and Googled a range of names for the best part of an hour.
My dream had been simply full of people from my childhood. I don't remember what they did or said, or what the dream imagery actually was. But I awoke with a desire to find out what they had done with their lives.
The names I looked for were not all long-lost friends, some were adversaries and passing acquaintances who had made an impact in short whistle-stop visits through my childhood. Some were people whom I spent 10 years going through the schooling system with in the same classes, but were never close to.
Most of the names did not register anything in Google, but a couple did. In the end the search took me to a website called OldFriends.co.nz where I read through the names listed for my Primary, Intermediate and High School. Many were familiar, but I didn't feel compelled to write to anyone. That is until last week.
Last week I took the plunge. I felt awkward. The person I was contacting was now important in the world. We had played together as young children – about 7 or 8 years old. My memory of our time as children was vague, but even after 25+ years I could still pull up a clear image of his face in my mind. I had read his profile and felt compelled to congratulate him on his success in life. Don't ask me why, because I'm not sure I know the answer to that. It just felt like the thing to do.
But I was timid. I waffled. I had internal arguments with myself. And finally, I wrote a short email – covering my ego with "you may not remember me but…".
As it turned out, he did remember me, and listening to ABBA as children.
I have always considered myself a fairly anonymous type of person. Not one to have a great impact on others, or be memorable in any big way.
So I was pleasantly surprised to find out that I was remembered clearly by someone so long after I had passed out of their everyday life.
It has shown me the imprint we can unknowingly leave, minor or major in the world; of the nature of being human and the longevity of memories; and the oddness of dreams, and the lessons they can unexpectedly bring us.