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I used to have a recurring dream about my teeth falling out. I had it for years … pretty much throughout my adulthood until I started recovering flashbacks. There were different variations of the dream, but the underlying theme was the same. I wanted my teeth to be permanent, but they would start falling out. Sometimes they were so full that I couldn’t close my mouth, and that would cause my teeth to break off. In other dreams, teeth would just start falling out, and I would freak out. I never figured out what they symbolized.

Then, last night I had another dream about my teeth, but it had a twist to it that has helped me to understand it. The dream also tells me that I have more healing work ahead of me … fun, fun.

First, the dream – I was at my office (I was watching “The Office” before I went to bed, and some of those characters were in it) when I noticed that I had two permanent teeth embedded on the inside of my current teeth. They had a jagged feel, which told me that they were permanent teeth, and I was completely freaking out about them being there. I wanted them extracted. I felt around some more and found a third permanent tooth embedded behind my lower teeth.

I ran to the bathroom (symbolizes the most private part of myself) and looked in the mirror (self-explanatory). I opened my mouth and was able to see that the roof of my mouth had an entire second row of permanent teeth embedded behind my regular teeth on the top of my mouth. There was also some sort of bone in the center of the roof of my mouth. To say that I freaked out is an understatement. I wanted all of those teeth extracted immediately.

I called my childhood dentist and marveled that I could have had these teeth in the roof of my mouth for 40+ years and not have noticed. I got a message that my friends needed to see me. My friend (who shares the same name as my sister – symbolizes my sister in my dreams) said that we needed to meet with another friend and me, and nobody else could come. I walked over with the other friend, who I think symbolizes my friendships as a whole.

I think I have finally cracked the code of these teeth dreams. I think that the teeth symbolize memories that I tried to embed permanently in my subconscious mind. When I had the dreams about the teeth falling out, I was upset because I wasn’t ready to remember. However, my reaction this time was wanting to extract them, which is much more in line with how I feel about repressed memories today.

So, the good news is that I have finally uncovered the symbolism of those dreams that haunted me for decades. The bad news is that I apparently have another layer of memories to process. Lucky me. I can’t say that I am surprised based upon noticeable memory gaps surrounding my Christmas memories. I feel empowered by my shift in how I view those repressed memories. While I am still horrified, I now see the goal as bringing them out rather than as holding them in.

Photo credit: Hekatekris

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