“Dreaming of You”: The Role of Dreams in Family History
“Late at night when all the world is sleeping, I stay up and think of you. And I wish on a star that somewhere you are thinking of me too.” These first lines of legendary singer Selena’s “Dreaming of You” may have been written about a romantic relationship, but they also apply to family history work. Our ancestors think of us, and we think about them—and sometimes we even dream about them too. For this episode, we invited Miya’s and Michelle’s friends (as well as our amazing producer Erika Free) to share how dreams have helped them draw closer to their families in the past, present, and future.
Miya, we know that you are a huge BTS fan. And I love and admire you for that. Can I tell you a little bit about like one of my favorite singers? Selena, and I know no offense like, I love Selena Gomez. She's very talented, but I'm talking about this for the younger generation who probably doesn't know who I'm talking about. I am talking about Selena Quintanilla Perez, the OG. And she was just such a magical person for me because it was the first time I saw my culture, my heritage, my experiences as a Mexican American on TV and music. And I loved her so much. And then I was lucky enough to serve my mission in Corpus Christi, Texas, where she's from. So I've actually been to her grave and her statue been to her boutique. I just love her so much. And my favorite song of hers is well, it depends on if you're talking about English or Spanish, but in English, I love "Dreaming of You." I love the first verse of that song because it says, "Late at night when all the world is sleeping, I stay up and think of you and I wish on a star that somewhere you are thinking of me to." And I know that that song is about like a romantic relationship. But I really like thinking about it in terms of genealogical consciousness of time being circular. And this thought of us thinking about our ancestors and their ancestors thinking about us too. So it's actually on my playlist for Dia de Muertos for Day of the Dead at night when we have the candles on the ofrenda, and we're thinking about our ancestors, that hopefully they're thinking about us too.
You're listening to the Love Your Lineage podcast by LDS Living, a multifaceted shame-free approach to family history. I'm Miya.
And I'm Michelle. And we want to help you find your space and claim your place in your family history story.
So Michelle, speaking of dreams, I have dreams every night. Every night, yeah, I know. It's weird. They range from crazy, wild like you know never happened to dreaming about things that I did recently or have experiences that I'm hoping to have. And I recently had a dream about my grandma, my grandma Theresa, and I was visiting her. It was back home in Laie, it was a beautiful sunny day. And I was on her porch, which is usually covered. And the sun wasn't shining on it, so it wasn't too hot, but it was just perfect with the trade winds blowing through. And I was on her comfy couch outside. And then all of a sudden she sat next to me. And I was just shocked because I'm like, "Grandma!" And she had brown hair, which when she passed away and her hair was gray and white. But her hair was brown, her skin was like really healthy. And she was young and beautiful. And she laid her head on my lap and I was just stroking her hair. And we didn't say anything to each other. But we just sat there. And the energy that I felt was just love from her. And for me, a one of the ways I show love is by touch right? And I love brushing people's hair. And it was just an honor to do that for her. And then she sat up and she said I have to go. And I was confused, because I was like where are you? Where would you go? This is your house. Like, there's no rush to leave anywhere. But she said, "I have to go." And she walked down the steps and I followed her. And her driveway was pretty long in Laie, and so she would be walking and, "Grandma, where are you going?" And she just kept on walking. But she would turn around and smile at me and wave and then she just kept walking. And I just I wasn't sad, but I was just confused. And then I woke up and I was like, oh, because she had to go and do whatever she needed to do on the other side. But that dream was such a comfort for me because I miss her every day. But that was confirmation to me that she is aware of who I am. And for me this dream was just the comfort that I needed at that moment at that time and I can look back at it now with so much fondness. I tell that story to anybody and everybody who wants to hear it. So I'm glad you can hear this.
That dream is absolutely mesmerizing. Like I was just totally in trance. Something you said that I really love is like, they want us to know that they're okay and they're aware of us too. So once again, that reminds me of like that cyclical circle like, "I'm thinking of you. And I want you to know that I'm okay and you're gonna be okay, and we're both gonna be okay. But we have stuff to do still." That's reall beautiful Miya
Thank you. And I was curious to know more about the kinds of dreams you have. Have you had like weird ones recently or because dreams can go any direction, right?
I've had some of the coolest dreams. And I'm like, Oh my gosh, that was amazing. Like, I remember how cool they were, but then I never write them down. And I forget. Like, I swear I had this one about an alligator. And he was having like this birthday party, but he was like walking upright with like suitcases, and I kept falling around where he was going. I don't remember. But I just remember waking up being like that dream was so cool. And my dreams usually are really colorful. Like they're really vivid. Like, I remember the colors and the dreams. A while a couple years ago, I had a family history dream where I was looking for. I remember his name was Eduardo, but I don't remember which great-grandfather he was or what the problem was. I just remember I needed to find something about him. And then I had this amazing dream that was like, okay, do this and this and like here. And I remember waking up and being like, oh my gosh, that was the coolest dream ever. I need to write this down. I didn't. And then I ended up following the suggestions in the dream. And I ended up finding him. I'm just so mad that I never wrote it down. Because it was a really cool experience. And because I probably didn't write it down, it's never happened again. And I'm like, why can I just have another dream to help me get over this block, you know, but that's what happens.
So everybody, if you can tell by now today's episode is all about dreams. And this is an episode we've been so excited to talk about. Because this episode will have multiple perspectives from so many wonderful people telling us their experiences that they've had with dreams and how it relates to their family history.
We're also referencing this really cool book that we have read. It's called Dreams As Revelation by Mary Jane Woodger, Ken Alford, and Craig Manscill. So we'll have all the references that we're using from that book today in our show notes. But if you want to read the whole book, which I highly recommend, it is available at deseretbook.com and in Desert Book stores, so check it out. So many of you out there might be thinking, what do dreams have to do with family history work? And we've talked about on the show before, that we want to push back on the stereotypes of what family history work is and what can qualify as family history work. And within our culture, dreams are more like, did we eat a bad burrito? Or where did these dreams come from? And from this book, and you know from scripture, and our even our own history of the Church, dreams are a very legitimate source of revelation.
In fact, in 1839, Joseph Smith once said, "We believe that we have a right to revelations, visions, and dreams from God, our heavenly Father, and light and intelligence through the gift of the Holy Ghost in the name of Jesus Christ, on all subjects pertaining to our spiritual welfare." I love this quote. I've never heard it before. But it resonates so deeply. It just makes sense that dreams would be gifts from God, and that it is a spiritual gift. So in today's episode, we're going to break it down into three parts by talking about the past, the present and the future, and how dreams can pertain to all three. And for each segment we'll have a different guest, where they will talk about their dreams and how it relates to family history.
So our first guest today is Shilo, and her dream is about solving a family history mystery, so I'm excited for you to hear it.
My grandmother loved to research and do genealogy, and I believe that she was able to solve one of our family's mysteries through a dream. My grandfather, her husband never met his father. Unfortunately, he was killed in a car accident just a couple of months before my grandfather was born. And because of this, there were some holes in our family's history on that side. For example, we never saw a marriage certificate for his parents, Nathan and Mary. Both names were listed on the birth certificate and christening records, but no indication that they were ever married and no judgment but this was the late 1800s, early 1900s. So it would have been more common at that time to have the father and mother wed. Mysterious. My grandmother fell like she reached a dead end, there were no other clues to expound on their relationship. Until one night when she had a dream. In it, my great-great-grandmother, Mary, appeared to my grandmother. And she explained to her that she was very much in love with Nathan, and wanted to be with him. But she was Catholic, and he was Jewish, and their families were against them being married. My grandmother felt the truth in those words in that dream. And that was it. That was the whole dream. But it really helped solve a small mystery in our family tree.
I loved hearing that story. And I think what is fascinating to me is that Shilo has never met these ancestors before. And there's many ancestors none of us have met before. Yes, she had this opportunity to hear from her grandmother. It reminds me too of Fiddler on the Roof, which is one of my family's favorite musicals, where this Jewish family, one of their daughters fell in love with a boy that was outside of her nationality and her religion. That scenario is so common. Back then and even today, I've seen this many times happen, and how people would still try to be together because they loved one another, right. So just seeing that relation right there in that connection, I hope can resonate with some of you out there, too, that these stories, they can help us all connect to one another. And it's just to me is so beautiful and so powerful.
I also really love about this dream that it talks about breaking through a brick wall. So many of us hit brick walls in our family history work, and there's nowhere to go. There's no more documentation, there's no more resources, no more stories, no more photos, what do we do? Could dreams be this other route that we haven't thought of when nothing else would work? So that makes me excited for anyone listening out there that, hey, maybe you thought you hit a brick wall. But maybe there's one more magical thing that could help you find the resources that you need, or the stories that you desperately want to know. The other thing that I really love about Shilo's story is her grandmother was someone that was actively seeking, she had a love and a passion for family history. And I wonder if that, you know, is one of the qualifications for receiving dreams, as help with family history is that we need to be someone who is actively seeking and open to receiving. I think before critical and skeptical and we're like, no way. I mean, I still think God can do whatever you want. But if someone out there is like, well I want this. How do I do this? So maybe being open to it and actively seeking.
And it sounds like the formula to having these kinds of brick walls come down is like you said, having an open heart and an open mind to receiving messages or revelation in ways that you may not have expected before. I'm curious to know your child's grandmother expected this to happen, too. God asks us to expect miracles, expects us to hear Him. And like you said, we can hear him if we're more open and willing and also seeking these kinds of things will come to us.
I think for many, many people, especially for BIPOC, Black Indigenous People of Color, we will never have written documents. And for me, you know, when this fact is brought up in many family history circles, I've been met with the response, "oh, well wait until the next life," or "sorry, too bad, there's nothing you can do," and just kind of been dismissed and made me feel terrible. Even the professionals or the consultants are just kind of like throw up their hands and like, "I don't know what to do for you. I don't know what to say." And I've always hated that response. Because I'm just like, no, this can't be this can't be the end. And it just gives me so much hope that dreams and maybe there's other things I don't know about or are not aware of that could still help me and I really love what you do, trying to record, document and legitimize oral histories because I think there's a lot of value in those two and like folk stories and different ways to connect.
Amen. Our next guest is Blakelee, and her dream story is a perfect illustration of what it means to connect to our ancestors through our traditions, and to receive that revelation to help us know what those traditions are.
Unknown Speaker 14:49
This is Blakelee, and I am calling to tell you about some kind of dream traditions in some Native American tribes. My family is Ute-Paiute mix. And so what I was taught was growing up is that dreams are really sacred. And especially when ancestors come and visit you, in dreams, that's very momentous, and you're supposed to kind of pay attention to whatever your ancestors say, in the dreams. I've been visited by my great grandpa, in my dream before. He just kind of gave me reassurance. And kind of led me down a path through the woods. And I was kind of crying, but he had given me reassurance that things were going to be okay. And then another prominent way that dreams factor in the tradition is specifically when it comes to dancing. So it said that you can't, not that you can't, but you're not suppose to participate in any dancing specifically, like the sun dance, and the bear dance is really big in the tribe, until you dream about dancing. Either an ancestor calls you to dance, or you have a dream of yourself dancing. And so my dad had never had the dream to dance. And so he's never participated. And I've also wanted to participate in dancing, but I've never had the dream either. So that calls never been made to us to participate. So yeah, that's what I know about dreams and the Native American traditions for my family. Thanks.
Thank you so much, Blakelee. You know, we talked a little bit about this in our genealogical consciousness episode, that time is not linear, it's circular. And if our ancestors can see the full circle, who better to reassure us that we're on the right path than them? So it really made me think of like you and all you've taught me about, you know, indigenous thought on time.
Thanks, Michelle. And it reminded me of our Savior, how His Atonement blesses everybody past, present, and future. So he's on the cyclical round here. Why not us, too, right. And why not our family? Our ancestors? It just makes perfect sense to me. And like you reminded us all, that our ancestors can see their future, way better than we can. They know what's coming. If we take the time to listen to them, seek them out, and maybe see them and hear them in our dreams will better understand how to prepare ourselves for our futures. And how to be good ancestors right now, too. They really do have the answers.
Oh, this is giving me chills. This is so cool.
And there's also to this concept of being invited to participate. I thought that was so unique. Have you heard that before, Michelle?
No, but I love it like, oh, there's a lot of us who are trying to reconnect with our ancestral traditions and learn more about it. And Blakelee's dream made me think of like, if we're timid or feeling awkward or out of place, reconnecting with ancestral traditions, maybe we could reach out to our ancestors and ask permission to be like, "Can I do this, or do I have your blessing to do this?" And that might, maybe your dream could come of that. And this reassurance that "Yes, I want you to do this, or no, don't do it." I don't know. But that's just kind of exciting to think about.
Our next story comes from Michelle's and my really good friend, and her name is Kirstin. She mentioned how her great-grandmother came to her in her dream. And what I really love about Kirstin's dream story is that it perfectly illustrates how there's room for both happiness and sadness in our family history stories, and in our family history, dreams.
Growing up, I was really close to my grandma, my dad's mom. I was her only granddaughter, and she was my best friend. And she would tell me stories about her parents, my great-grandparents. She had dozens of stories, and she would tell them over and over again until I could basically tell them myself, word for word, just the way that she did. My great-grandparents both died before even my dad was born. But I felt really close to them for these stories. Some of the stories were fairly epic. Stories of my great-grandparents immigrating here from Japan, saving up money to start their restaurant, surviving the deaths of their first two children, feeding the hungry and transient during the Great Depression, and avoiding internment during World War II. Other stories were more mundane, I guess. She would tell me about my grandpa and the pride he felt driving through town in his green Packard with the white wall tires. Or describe the way my great-grandmother's hands looked as she rolled up crests for one of her famous pies. When I was about seven years old, I started to have dreams about my great-grandma. I would have them once a month, and they went on for years. She would sit at the end of my bed in these dreams and we would talk. I don't remember what we spoke about, unfortunately. But I do remember waking up and feeling both intensely loved and also intensely sad. Like I was mourning her every time. I haven't had one of these students for years, but I would love to. I would love to meet her again. And to know what she would say to me now.
If I had one wish, it would be that Kirstin could have one of those dreams tonight.
You know, something so interesting about family history is that our ancestors are our family and our kin, we share the same DNA, but yet they are complete strangers to us. And that maybe dreams could be a way to bridge that gap, to get to know them, to have discussions with them, to feel connected to them. I don't know, what do you think about that, Miya?
I think you're right. It has to be a tool to help bridge those gaps, right? Or, as Elijah says, to help us turn our hearts to each other. I really believe that, that this experience I Kirstin shared as well as our other guests, that these dreams are meant to help be that connecting point for us to them. And as well as Kirstin's story, I really want to highlight that family history is also about missing people, people that, like for instance with my grandma. Family history is my way of remembering the good times I had with her and still trying to be connected with her even though she's passed on. Some of you out there may be listening and thinking, well, I haven't met these people. Yet, I know from the story and from many other stories and from my own personal accounts that just because they may be strangers to us, it doesn't mean that they see us as strangers. Right? I bet you they're looking down and they've been looking down for years, and anticipating us coming to this earth, getting to know them reacquainting ourselves with them and bringing the blessing that they're so desperately wanting and needing. I'm sure there's more of them that know us than us that know them.
It's all coming back to that circle again. Like if they're looking at us, they want us to turn and look at them and round and round and round. Ooh, love it. Also, another thing that I loved about Kirstin's dream was lately when my kids have been having a hard time sleeping, we'll say a prayer and we'll ask that our ancestors can be there to watch over us. And I think I got that idea from Sister Wendy Nelson when she talked about praying and asking God to send our angels, who are our family, to watch over us and help us. That's been so comforting, especially for my oldest daughter when she's feeling afraid, because she does know her ancestors like Jane and Maria and Teresa. And she knows those women were fierce, and they were strong, and they were loving, and that if she needed help, that those women spiritually would be watching over her and be with her. And I just love that. I love it so much.
I love that. Thank you, Michelle. So as a recap of dreams, helping us with our paths, here are a few things that we learned. We learned that dreams can help us overcome brick walls in our family history. We also learn to that dreams can help us process the people that we miss so dearly. Dreams can help us to build these bridges and help us connect with ancestors that we may see as strangers. And we also can see that time is circular. That as we look to the past, they will help us to prepare for our futures and help us to overcome all things. And lastly, we see that dreams can also help us connect with traditions that we may have never had before or have lost touch in.
This is so good. Okay, now I am so excited. We're going to talk about dreams in the present. First we have our guest Lacey who's going to talk about her dear brother that passed away. Okay, and just to mention that this beautiful story does mention death by suicide. So if there are any listeners out there that are sensitive to that, I just want to let you know upfront.
Hi. A few years ago, my brother passed away. He died by suicide. And during that time, I wasn't dreaming at all due to hormones or whatever. I had not had a dream in a couple of years. About six weeks after his passing, I had a dream that we were in my parents' house, and it was clear as day, standing in the hallway, and he gave me a hug. He wasn't like that during his life. He didn't hug people. He had some social issues, some learning disabilities, and he most likely was on the autistic spectrum, so he didn't hug people. And in my dream he hugged me. That was very special and meaningful. I know it was him telling me that he was good and he was happy.
I just wanted to say that was just so tender.
That's exactly what I was gonna say. I was like, this is the most tender, just touching, loving. You know, it wasn't about a record or finding information. It was about connection and healing. And I think dreams could also be a way to help us process things that never got resolved in this life. And the other thing I think about with this dream is that it shows us that our ancestors can heal, and that they can be the best versions of themselves. Can the hug that he maybe couldn't give her in life, he could give her in the dream? That's such a gift.
Yeah, and as a gift of hope to right like, I feel so much hope from the story from people that I may not have been able to hug myself or that I miss hugging that there's still that ability, like you said, to connect with each other and to offer that comfort. But it came in the form of a dream.
Like you said, this dream is so hopeful, and it's like he is healing or healed. Like he's on his way to something better, even though he was struggling in this life. I just love it. That's so beautiful. Thank you Lacey for sharing that.
Lacey's story reminds me Sister Reyna Aburto's story. So growing up Sister Aburto and her family lived in Nicaragua. And in her childhood, there was a devastating earthquake that destroyed her home, and as well as killed her brother, who she was really close with. And so from her story, she shares that she started to have a daydream, where her brother, Noelito, would come and knock on her door and pronounce that he was alive and that he would stay with her. Years later, after learning about the plan of salvation, that daydream finally made sense to her. She knew Noelito really was alive.
I love that so much. It makes me think that dreams can come to us not only when we're asleep when we're awake, because it was like a daydream.
Yeah. Our next story comes from our friend Jowanza, whose family is from Saint Kitts, and he mentions how when he was on his LDS mission, his mother had a dream and this is what she told him.
All right, my mom is from the West Indies. So she's from an island called Saint Kitts, which is part of a dual island state called Saint Kitts and Nevis. And for her dreams are a big part of her upbringing, and that's a big part of the overall culture. Not only do dreams serve a purpose of helping us understand who we are, but also serves the purpose of having our ancestors helped us make decisions. So my mom, anytime she had a big decision to make, you know, would say she had a dream where, you know, her grandma came, or her mom or her dad who passed away, you know, came to help her make that decision, to tell her exactly what she needed to do. In fact, I remember when I was on my LDS mission, she sent me a letter saying that, you know, her mom came to her in a dream, and said that she needed to be a better support for me on my mission. So it's not something that I can say I've experienced, I haven't had too many dreams that are that vivid that I remember my grandparents or my, my mom in. But that's something that sticks with me and something that's a part of the culture.
One thing I love about this dream is that growing up in a culture or a family that already holds dreams as like a valid form of revelation, you don't even question it. It's just you grew up, I can have a dream. People can talk to me, I can make connections and learn things. You know, in many indigenous and African cultures. That's how it is, like dreams are legitimate just from birth. And I think there's a lot of us out there that it's going to take a mind shift for us to be like, this isn't just crazy. Like this can be valid.
Right. And I think too if it's not a tradition that you or your family has, the stories can help you be more open to dreams and stories that others may be experiencing right as they are on their family history journey.
Yeah, because I can think of some family history consultants, if I said I had a dream, they will sort of roll their eyes and be like, "You crazy. That's not valid." And I want to push back on that and say yes, it is
Nice push back. Good job. I think what was really neat too about this story is that this dream helped our friend Jowanza. Have you ever thought of that, Michelle, that dreams could be a way of us to help our relationships with both living and dead?
Yeah, like how his grandma came and told his mom, hey, you need to be a better support. I wonder if dreams could be a way that like if there is a rift in a family, or if there's an estrangement in your family, you could ask a matriarch or a patriarch to come in a dream and be like, how can I bridge this gap? How can I heal this wound with living people? Because like we've talked about many times, our ancestors can see a bigger picture, and they probably like no more intimate information that could maybe help us be a better support to other living people.
Yeah. Maybe this won't go on the show, but this reminds me of how I've heard stories from my dad, he would have dreams from his sister who's passed away, who I'm named after. That's my middle name, Loretta, after my dad's sister. She or a few answers would come to him and be like, "Joe, you need to do this and this." But like, that's the thing, it was such a humbling experience. It's one thing if someone's to tell you straight to your face, like this is what you need to do. I think dreams is just a very humble way of being taught, of being instructed, of being warned or also of being loved. It's just a very different form of communication.
And I feel like you have to be humbled to also accept it to be like, whoa, I just had a visitation from somebody.
They came to me.
That's beautiful. So to recap, our dreams in the present can help us with grief and mourning, can help teach us things, can help us to repair relationships, and can also be very humbling.
So our third segment here in our episode, today, we'll be referring to dreams, as revelation for our future. And our first story comes from our friend Amber. And Amber's story teaches us how revelation can help us prepare for things that are to come, such as Amber giving birth to her first child.
So I have a couple of instances in my family tree where dreams have preceded the birth of a person. You know, sometimes children are planned. Sometimes they're not planned, but either way. But my mom gave me a copy of my great-great-great-grandmother's journal, with an entry about the dream that her mother had about her. I've searched everywhere for the journal, I wish I could read it to you, I can't find it. So I'm just going to tell it from memory. It says, "My mother had a dream about me, and that is the beginning of my story." And in this dream, her mother was in this beautiful field full of wildflowers. And this young lady approached her, ran to her and embraced her and said, "I am so excited and so grateful that you are soon to be my earthly mother. We'll go through many trials together, but it will make us stronger." And then a couple of weeks after my wedding. You know, we were not planning on having any kids that soon, but I had a dream about my oldest child, Abby, and she was about five or six. And she was pulling me along by the hand. And she just had so many questions about everything that she saw. I remember it was fall in the dream, she had so many questions about the leaves and the environment. And I woke up and I said to my husband, "We need to have this child." Now that she is about that age. She's seven now. She's completely and fully grown into the version of her that I saw in my dream. And I just find it so beautiful that my dream of her mirrored a dream with a mother and daughter pair way farther up my family tree. I think that's really special.
So this dream makes me think of dreams as spiritual gifts, which is another great section of the book Dreams As Revelation that we talked about the beginning of the podcast, but maybe this is like a spiritual gift that's like hereditary in her family. Or just the fact that she grew up knowing this was a story. Like again, what you want is a dream. She grew up knowing that this was legitimate, this was real. And so she was herself open to receiving a dream like this. Because if you grew up like dreams are stupid, I'm gonna have a dream about this, or they don't mean anything, I doubt that you would be open to receiving a dream like this. So I just thought that was really cool.
And I want to explore that further with you, Michelle, what you said about are spiritual gifts hereditary? To me, it's like, yeah, like, to me is obvious, because we're all children of God. He's the one that has all the gifts and the greatest of all the gifts. Because we're His children, because there's only one line between us and Him, in our pedigree charts, that makes sense to me why this would be the case. We can inherit these things. And because we're all connected to each other as family, it also makes sense that these gifts like having dreams can be passed down generation after generation.
Oh, one hundred percent. And the thing once again, we're going to talk about like, circular timeline, and how sometimes time and space feel so distant and big, and a little dream could be like that short little bridge that zips you together. Like with Amber and her daughter, she was just there in that moment with her daughter, even though she hadn't been born yet, and how dreams can help us to feel more connected through time and space. I don't know about you, but for multiple reasons, I'm really excited to go to sleep tonight. Maybe we'll have one of these dreams...
I hope so.
...that transcends time and space. Our last guest today on the show is someone very special, Erika, we love we respect we're so grateful for because she helps us so much with the podcast. Yes. And this is another dream about a grandmother and her granddaughter, which I love.
So in Japanese culture, there's this thing called hatsuyume. And it's this thing where they say that the dream that you have at the very beginning of the new year is kind of indicative of how the rest of your year is going to be. So on New Year's morning, when my family had wake up, we talked about the dreams that we had and think about what that could mean for the new year. And most of the time, they were just pretty weird, silly dreams that I don't think really meant anything. But I do feel like I've had other dreams that are much more significant and do mean something in the bigger picture. Ever since high school. I've had these random reoccurring dreams of being a mother, which is pretty unusual, because I don't have any children. I'm single, I'm not married. I'm not planning on being a mother anytime soon. And it's hard to describe why these dreams feel more significant than other dreams, besides the fact that they have a lot more lasting effect in my mind. And I had one where my grandma was in the dream with me, right around the time she passed away, and she was helping me care for a baby in that dream. And I'm really grateful for these dreams, even if I don't understand their purpose completely, because they have really influenced my values in the way that I look at things.
Thank you, Erika. I love the tradition of hatsuyume that you so beautifully explained. That resonates with me a lot, because I'm Japanese, too, right. And that concept of dreams being the one to help set the tone for your year, for a time that's going to come, for your future. That is so powerful to me. And Erika, you have also just beautifully shared how these dreams are there to give you this perspective that you may not have had before, or may have had otherwise in preparation for what could possibly potentially be your future role.
Yeah. And I just love in this dream, that she talks about children and yet she's not someone who has children or anytime soon. But like, because time is a circle, you're probably sick of us saying that, but we're gonna keep saying it. Because time is a circle, the feeling she fell about motherhood could have been all the mothers that came before and how much they loved and cared for her and watched over her. And it's just this big circle of motherly love. And something I also really love is that you don't need to be a mother to have mother instincts or to care about children or to watch out for children, or to have that drive to care for children. And I think that's so beautiful that there's people all over the earth that will never have children, and yet they can be some of the most loving mothering people. And then I think of Christ, and how He had all those wonderful qualities that we would say is the perfect mother of kind and patient and loving and forgiving and all those things.
Wow, that was so beautiful. And it reminds me of a dream I had, too, growing up. So I'm an oldest child, right. And when it was just me and my two sisters below me, I had a dream that we were having family home evening with my parents, and we're all sitting down together, and I was in charge of taking attendance and making sure everybody was there. So I had a nice clipboard. "Okay, Mom's here. Dad's here. Okay, I'm here. Okay, Teylon. Cedar," and then, "There's somebody missing." And everybody's like, "Mia, you're just making that up. Come sit down." There is somebody missing, I don't know who and I need to go find out, and so I ran through the entire house, looking at every room, every closet, under the beds, and, "Somebody's missing!" And everybody thought I was crazy, but I would not sit down and let a start Family Home Evening until we found that missing person. And then a few days later, my mom announced that she was pregnant with my brother. And then I have that same dream again, after he was born. My brother Liam was there. And again, I took attendance and got to the bottom of the list. And I said, "There's somebody missing." "Mia sit down. We're just gonna start." "No, there's somebody missing." And so I ran around the house, couldn't find anybody. But I knew someone was missing. Same thing. My mom said, "Oh, well, I'm pregnant." And that's when my youngest brother came in the story.
That is so cool. And I think, too, I love if we can leave on that note to be like, who's missing? Not even on your family tree but in your heart. Like who in your family do you need to connect to who's missing? You might not need a clipboard. But I love that you had one in the drea.
Thanks. This was so cool these dreams about the future. And there's so many great things that we can learn from them too. So few things that I highlighted are dreams can be means of preparing us for our future, just like Amber did and receiving her daughter and her life. Dreams can also be passed out from generation to generation, as well as the gift of receiving dreams. And lastly, this concept of time and space being circular and how love can travel through that circle back to us from generations of our ancestors. And like we heard from Erika about hatsuyume, a Japanese tradition, we can also set intentions for our future.
Oh, that's so good. So I'm sure that many of you at this point are like, okay, I want to have a dream. How do I have a dream? How do I know if it's revelation? Or like we mentioned earlier an old burrito? So one of the things the book Dreams As Revelation talked about, is it revelation or indigestion? And so some of the tips that they had for us was, was it for your personal benefit? Did it strengthen you? Was it for righteous reasons? And then dreams of revelation will usually align with the commandments, which I thought was really interesting, bringing peace of mind. And then their last suggestion was to ask God for confirmation if this was a dream, that you need to hold his revelation.
And on the opposite end, we can ask ourselves, did this dream coerce us, control us, or dominate us? If so those are red flags.
Those are not from the Spirit.
Those are not from the Spirit.
So someone coming up to you and being like, hey, I had a dream that we're supposed to get married, so you need to marry me. Like, red flag, no. So. So once again, make sure you pray about it, the Spirit's there. Maybe counsel with a trusted member of your family, making sure that whatever the dream is directing you to do or you feel passionate about that it's something in line with a commandments, that it's something for your good, and it's not to coerce or manipulate someone else. And I would just say, you know, like my dream in the beginning alligators and suitcases, it's probably safe to say that's not revelation.
But it's not a red flag. Yeah, totally fine. So maybe you're wondering, well, how can I have these dreams? Because you want to have dreams, right?
Yeah. And one of the things the book talks about, which I want to just mention first. Being receptive to dreams as revelation or having that gift, it does not indicate that you are worthy or unworthy. So if you haven't ever had a family history dream, that does not mean you are not worthy, or there's a problem there. It's just that the Lord usually wants us to ask.
So also when you have those dreams, write them down. Record the dreams, right. And in the book Dreams As Revelation, they highlight that. They talked about keeping a dream journal. I started keeping a dream journal towards the beginning of this year. And man, dreams are weird, right? But I've noticed that there's been more patterns of, Okay, you're ready to receive this dream now that was about my grandma, or about my family, or about other things that are happening in my life. So I really believe that a way to show the Lord that we're also ready to receive this and are grateful for maybe some of the dreams that we are having our will have is by writing them down.
Yes. And now that you mentioned that, I was like, would that not be the coolest thing if you found your ancestors dream journal? And could like know what they dreamt about and the time that they lived in? Oh, my gosh, it will be so cool.
Chills. I don't want my pastor to have that. Right?
Yeah. I want them to have that too. But I'm so bad at keeping journals.
And that's okay. That's okay. And one other thing, too, I wanted to touch on is, sometimes the gifts that we want, don't come to us. But I know there's people who use their gifts to bless me still. For example, I had an auntie reached out to me recently, telling me she had a dream about my grandma that my grandma wanted me to have. And the first thing when I heard the dream, it was beautiful. My grandma basically wanted me to know that she loved me and that she was aware of me and that she was proud of me. But I wondered like, okay, that was cool aunti got the dream. But you know, why didn't I get the dream? Why? Why not me? You know, I don't have all the answers to that question. But I know that one, I have a better relationship with this auntie now, because she was able to tell me something so intimate and personal, that I really needed to hear, as I was really struggling with my grief at the beginning of this year. And then, too, it proved to me that God is working through many different people, not just me, to receive this revelation. And thankfully, I was willing to listen and to have an open heart. So if you don't have the dreams that you're wanting to have from your ancestors, maybe ask your family, are they having dreams about your ancestors? Ask them, listen, record these dreams if you can. Because I know just like Lehi, just like Joseph and all these other prophets of old, that these dreams were meant to help and bless more than just themselves. They're supposed to bless people, generations of time and space.
I love this so much. I love this conversation. I hope that you all have learned something and are excited also about going to sleep tonight, and what dreams could come to you. And thanks for being here. Sweet dreams.
Thank you for joining us for this episode of Love Your Lineage. You can find all the references and full transcripts for this episode in our show notes at ldsliving.com/loveyourlineage. And if you love this episode, please please please leave us a review or rating.
This episode was hosted by me, Miya, and the lovely Michelle. It was produced and edited by Erika Free and Katie Lambert and mixed by Mix at 6 Studios. Thank you for being with us today and we hope you feel empowered to love your lineage and to embrace your authentic family history story.
Transcribed by https://otter.ai