Motivational and inspirational writer, Bryan Hutchinson is the author of several books about life with ADHD including the highly acclaimed, best selling "One Boy′s Struggle: A Memoir" and the author of the hilarious eBook that went viral "10 Things I Hate about ADHD"

What Do Kids Dream About and Why?

I am standing at the edge of a cliff; my toes are curling the edge, as I prepare to jump.  Before me is an open sky, beautiful and clear and, as I look down, I cannot see the bottom, just more glorious sky – this place seems it could be the edge of the world, maybe it is. I am calm, open, even smiling quite delightfully. I feel liberated. I should be terrified, I should be trembling and yet, I am not fearful, not at all.

I step off, with my arms open wide as if I can fly and in an instant I can feel the air rushing against me, pressing against me, yet gently, almost hugging me, like a lover’s sweet embrace. I am flying.

I really am flying! I am not heading downwards, no, not towards the unseen ground, which must be down there, far, far, below. I am flying through the sky like an eagle, bold and confident, fearlessly! The world is mine! Nothing I do, no direction I take is a mistake, I will not be seen or scrutinized – in a word, I am FREE!

I am dreaming

I was recently reading that children who dream of flying are usually facing some kind of trauma in their young lives. The trauma is beyond their control and such dreams, as flying, help them regain a sense of control and confidence – it is not a dream of death, no, not that, it is a dream of life – the hope of something better!

Apparently, when a child dreams of flying on a regular basis, it could indicate the child is dealing with something beyond his or her understanding or control; such dreams become a survival mechanism. Imaginary control within a dream is better than no control at all, likewise with hope, love and achievement.

When I was very young I flew in my dreams nearly every night and I eventually started day dreaming of flying too. It was exhilarating and, it was with great relief, maybe even a bit of joy, when I recently read about why kids may have these dreams – seems to make sense and means I am not the only one! It is always nice to know you’re not alone.

My wondrous dreams of flying partly led to the creation of my childhood alter ego Commander Mart! If you have read my book “One Boy’s Struggle: A Memoir”, then you know about Commander Mart and how I escaped to him whenever I wanted to have an adventure, which was nearly all of the time. Eventually, my escapades with Commander Mart led to my further detriment, because it was an added distraction from lessons in school and paying attention to my elders, but, let’s skip that for now – we already know there is always a price to pay, right?

Looking back, I believe my dreams of flight were a healthy way to cope, as they were above all things a positive and fun reprieve for my rapid shooting, ten thousand-a-second, thoughts. I never dreamed of causing harm, being cruel or striking back at anyone. However, I can imagine that it would be very easy for suffering children to go in the other direction. When a child is bullied, receiving bad grades and being ridiculed, punished – from those things and others, lash out with vengeance in their dreams. Whether she realized it or not, my mother helped me avoid such negative dreams.

My imaginary alter ego Commander Mart was a super hero and he was the leader of a group of super heroes, they were called the Silver Eagles (hey, I was a kid). The Silver Eagles flew throughout the universe rescuing people, entire civilizations and generally helping anyone in need – they were praised and above all, appreciated. My dreams of being a member of the Silver Eagles were so exhilarating and wonderful, even today I like to slip into their world. I intend to write a book about the adventures of Commander Mart and the Silver Eagles, but sharing them with others, isn’t easy.

In a very real, grounded way, I feel I have brought the meaning of Commander Mart to life in my deeds. I am not a super hero by any stretch of my imagination; however, I do try to help others in the ways that I can, mostly through sharing my experiences and thoughts in my books, blog and our ADHD Social Network, ADDer World.

But, what about the kids who dream of destructive things? What are the children, who become bullies, who are destructive and who cause harm to others, dreaming about? What are they dealing with and what unchecked thoughts are in their heads before they go to sleep? I don’t know. Does it matter? I think maybe it does.

I was lucky to have a mother who took time to read to us in the evenings and filled our heads with positive, wonderful adventures before bedtime. The books my mother read always had grand lessons in morals and, even though it seemed they would never come – happy, meaningful endings. I believe these stories had an incredibly positive influence in the direction of my dreams, wants, needs and desires. Most importantly, I think these readings helped my mind relax and let go of things which were bothering me and any trouble I might have been in, because, it didn’t matter what had happened during the day, my mom still read to us, hugging and stroking our hair as she read, comforting us in a way only a mother can.

jamesandthegiantpeach

This is one of my favorit books, which I remember from childhood. Just thinking about it takes me back to those moments when my mother was reading it and I imagine the seagulls lifting the peach high into the sky! I can see it, flying higher and higher!

Even now, so many distant years away from the sofa listing to my mom, most nights before sleeping, I enjoy reading stories which deal with moral dilemmas, have adventure and have meaningful outcomes, which I can learn from and grow. I also realize that what I read before sleeping can help direct my dreams to some grand adventure and it usually works! Personally, I believe this is much better than falling asleep thinking about any mistakes, or, pressure from the day gone by, which seems to be what I do when I am too tired to read a little.

~Bryan

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