PROLOGUE from PLUM DREAMS DIARY: On Mothers, Men, Modern Medicine, and the Divine

Dreams bequeath sacred gifts. wisdom, these nocturnal visitors offer direction and guidance for our well-being. 

I know this now, but for years I was a left-brained journalist, depending on rote and reason to navigate the world. An ambitious East Coast reporter, I covered politics in the nation’s capital. 

Although outwardly successful, I struggled with a phalanx of debilitating problems: writer’s block, an acrimonious relationship with my mother, chronic health difficulties, failed romances, confused religious beliefs. And, this is only a partial list. 

To overcome these impediments, I tried therapy, personal growth seminars, medical fixes, overeating — with mixed success. 

In 1981, I moved to San Francisco, to the West Coast. Soon, a non-rational occurrence intruded. I remembered my first dream ever. It held contours of a crucial scene for the screenplay I was writing. 

The dreams shared in PLUM DREAMS DIARY appeared on my night-time screen. Every morning, I recorded the scenes in a journal, playing with the symbols, images, and word puns. In this way, I taught myself to understand the dreams; in this way, the dreams taught me to integrate their lessons into my life. 

We need more than intelligence and logical thinking to secure a meaningful life. Ancients and their spiritual traditions honored dreams as harbingers of healing the body and heart and of guiding a people. They revered the dream as sage wisdom. 

Nightly encounters convinced me dreams are the language of the soul, the voice of the Divine. 

Dreams continue to speak to me. I trust these messengers, calling upon their acumen. 

During the potential health crisis retold in this book, the doctor said, probably to assuage my fears, “Well, for a writer these are important experiences.” His comment made a dramatic impression.

The pioneering dreams in this book form a telling collection of choice dreams with the power to transform women’s lives. This second edition reorders the remembrances into explorations of our true self, mothers, men, modern medicine, and the nature of the Divine. 

As I update this Prologue, the guiding, prophetic, curative capacities of dreams are apparent. For compelling reasons, probe the dreams and contemplate their lessons for your life. For commanding insights, perceive the wealth your dreams hold. 

We all carry the scars of growing up, disappointments in work and love, and fears about our health. We all want to find happiness and lead a meaningful life. May these pages inspire you to listen to dreams, imperative guideposts punctuating the way. 

Joyce Lynn Mill Valley, California, 2012