Hi, this is Dr. Mark; I'll be glad to help with interpreting these dreams.
First, though, let me extend to you my condolences on your son's death. It sounds so tragic and I can only imagine how difficult it has been for you. Your dreams bear witness to this. Let me explain.
Dreams are not "objective" experiences, meaning they are not events that happen "to" the person and so can be interpreted based on objective criteria that apply to all. For example, when you go to get in your car and it won't start, we treat that as an objective experience wherein you have your car towed to the garage. It could have been your car, my car, or any car, the same interpretation would be given to each one of us were we to experience the event of our car not starting. Get it fixed.
Dreams, however, are not like that. They have a symbiotic relationship with the person, the person's life experiences, the person's personality, and many other factors. Therefore, the way we work with dreams in psychotherapy will be determined not just by the set of visual memories you have of the dreams but by many parts of what must be taken into account that I mentioned.
Your dream seems very close to your conscious experience and is a rather direct messages between your subconscious self and your conscious self. I am impressed that you have seemed to identify rather clearly the subject of your dream: your conflict about quitting your job and moving to where your spouse is and starting your own business. Let me, though, fill in the emotional and symbolic details for you.
In their emotional content and thus dream symbolism, dogs refer to certain instincts we have: usually they are loyal love, protection, self-defense. The dream started out with one dog; that dog was sad. This is the emotion, when joined with the symbol of a "dog" refers to missing the object of loyal love. Remember, sad is not an aggressive action type feeling; rather, it is an emotion of lack and missing of something or someone. Clearly the emotion of the "sad dog", then, is of not being where it would be happy, which we would state for you would be with your spouse in the other state.
The dream then makes an interesting shift: there are now 2 dogs. But let's first focus on the setting: they are holding on to a tall pole. Again, remembering the emotional symbolism of dreams, a pole represents two separate things. First, it represents reliability and security: a pole is firmly planted in one place and doesn't move, it is steady and secure. But secondly, someone places a pole in its secure and reliable position, it doesn't just plant itself there. And so a pole also refers to action taken by someone being reliable and secure.
Something about the pole, though, scares you in the dream: you want the 2 dogs to be safe. So, you are not convinced in the security and are not ready to rely on certain actions. This would seem congruous with possible fear of starting your own business and quitting your job. People are looking up at them and this is not reassuring to you in your dream. So there may be an element of concern about people's opinions of you possibly quitting your job and moving to start a business, there may be opposition your are concerned about subconsciously.
Now we conclude with the 2 dogs. They are, we would say using your own intuition, you and your spouse. But it could also be you and your own desire to quit your job and move to start your business. I would suggest that this may be more the communication. Remember, symbols in dream can refer to plans, thoughts, feelings, etc. as well as people and objects. So I would encourage you to think of the first part of the dream as the sadness referring to your spouse and the second part as referring to your uncertainty about you and your possible plans.
I wish you the very best!
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