Bear Dreams


I had two dreams in one week where I encountered the American Brown Bear, also known as the GRIZZLY. Now, let me give you a little introduction to my relationship with the grizzly. They are my favorite animal to see whenever I visit the zoo - I stare and admire their massive bodies with piles of thick fur, enjoy the way they wrestle each other in the water, how they stand up to receive tasty treats from the zoo staff. And yet, they are my absolute worst nightmare to possible-potentially-maybe see when I am out in the wilderness (you should have seen me last summer hiking through Glacier National Park with acute awareness and high anxiety). I am both enamored and terrified of these creatures in the same breath!

So, the first dream I was in the woods with some folks, when we came to a small lookout over a clearing in the trees. We peeked over and there were three giant bears just doing their bear thing. I felt frozen and also SO stoked. Second dream I was in the woods once again, but this time alone, and all of a sudden I realized a bear is nearby. For some reason, I had some food on my hands, so I was scared the bear would smell the food and hunt me down. I found a log to "hide" behind, and pretty soon I felt the bear lay down on the other side of the log and take a snooze. Again, terror and awe.

What were these bears doing in my dreams? I don’t know about you, but for me and my dreams, there is reason and meaning in the different objects/animals/people that show up. Here is what I love about bears: their POWER, STRENGTH, GROUNDEDNESS, and FEROCITY. They are EPIC beings. They are PROTECTIVE. Basically, you do not want to mess with them. A quick Google search tells me that bears are symbols of power, strength, and independence. My therapist told me I was lucky for the bears, that they are actually a rare and good sign.

I knew what I had to do. I followed my nose and intuition to the bead shop, found myself a little bear charm, and bam. Got my own little bear to remind me to harness and not fear my own power, strength, and protective force as I continue to journey through the woodlands of this world.

What animal or symbol can guide you in this time of your life?

Alissa Swank