Spiritual Advice: Dreaming of the Deceased

My mom died a year ago. I keep dreaming about her and I feel she has a message to me but I can't figure it out what it is. I need help, please. - anonymous

First of all, I'm sorry for your loss. I can't begin to conceive what it's like to have lost a parent. Although this is unlikely to make things easier, I want you to know that you are so much closer to connecting with your mother than you realize. 

Dreams can be tricky to interpret, but the good news is that the message you're looking for is embedded in the dream somewhere. All you have to do is suss it out. Here are some tips:

1) If you struggle to remember the details of your dreams, try keeping pen and paper near the bedside and writing everything down whenever you wake up from a dream - and also, before you go to sleep, tell yourself that you will have vivid recall and excellent memory of any dreams that involve your mother. It seems a little silly, but simply affirming that you'll have a better memory of the dreams can make a huge difference - give it a shot.

2) Not everything, but most things in the dream are part of the message. If something feels vivid, real, and important, then it's definitely relevant to the message your mother is trying to send you. Other people in the dream, animals, locations that you recognize, items, clothing...pay attention to these things. Write them down if you're likely to forget, and then...

3) Interpret the dream/message based on your associations to what was in the dream. It would be nice if visitations came with super-clear messages. Sometimes they do, but most often they don't. If your loved one isn't clearly speaking to you in the dream, then it's up to you to put together the puzzle pieces for yourself. 

Here's an example: Say you dreamt that your mother was sitting at the kitchen table of your childhood home, and a place has been set for you, across from her. On the plate is a slice of birthday cake. Your mother smiles at you, and the atmosphere of the dream is calm.

A dream like this may carry the message that your mother is with you and acknowledging your birthday from the other side.

Not all messages are dramatic. Many of them are simple, and comforting. The content and feel of the dream will tell you what kind of message is being sent.

For some more tips on how to decode messages, here's a blog article I wrote about message interpretation that's still living on the old version of my site.

If you use tarot, then I'd also recommend this divination technique.

And if all else fails, you can seek out a reader or medium for assistance in interpreting the dream. I caution against this though, as I believe that the best person to interpret a dream is the dreamer themselves. After all, your mother chose to appear to you and reach you via the subconscious. There's something scared about that.