Last week I dreamed I cut my hair. I looked in the mirror, and tah dah!, I had a sassy little shag cut with lots of layers and straight bangs. My dream self thought, “Well lookee here!” And I was inspired.

My dream about hairdos planted a seed of change in my mind; the ennui of late summer grabbed onto this tiny verdant shoot and apparently decided to go with it.

I went to the salon this week and got my hair chopped into layers, because everyone with fine hair knows that layers are our best friends. I fulfilled the dream, minus the straight bangs, because everyone who has ever had straight bangs knows they are totally annoying to maintain (even if they are super hip, ala Zooey Deschanel).

I like that my dream self inspired my ambulatory self. Generally my dreams tend not to be quite this fantastic.

I have had a recurring dream for years where I am on vacation with my extended family in some fun, touristy place. The location changes, but the central theme of the dream is always this: I am separated from the group, helping Jack. No matter how hard I try, Jack and I cannot catch up to everyone else. Once we were in a coastal town and they were all leaving on a boat—I rushed with Jack to meet them, but the boat had left the dock when we arrived. Another time it was Disneyland: the whole clan jumped on the Monorail, but Jack was falling apart and he and I were left making a scene in Tomorrowland.

There are a bunch of variations on this concept, but they all involve me trying super hard to compel my kid to cooperate so we can join in. They also involve me failing.

You may commence analyzing the subtext of my dreams now. Aaaaaaaaand, go.

Here is the obvious deconstruction: I am frustrated in my attempts to make a couple of my boys interact with the world, or at least “keep up” with the people around them.

I did have a lovely dream earlier this summer, though. It was the anti-stress dream. Truthfully, when I woke from it, a rosy glow enveloped me and lingered all through the morning.

In the dream, I was at an event in my neighborhood, sitting next to a neighbor who I really respect. She leaned over and whispered to me, “You don’t need to worry about what other people think about the struggles you have raising your children. You are doing a good job.”

My neighbor said it, but maybe the words were the voice of my subconscious. Or maybe it was God, nudging me forward and onward.

Either way, it was dreamy.

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