Angela Grillo

Enrich your life through sacred, creative, integrative dream practices.

Animal Dreams

"Snakes in my dreams"

Animal Dreams, dreams, recurring dreamAngela Grillo
Image from by Irene Payne

Image from by Irene Payne

“Snakes in my dreams”

Dreams are full of metaphors and symbols we often don’t understand. We can theorize, we can look up the many different interpretations online or say “well, I saw that yesterday so that must be why I dreamt it.”  Dream images are layered with conscious and subconscious associations and experiences we personally and collectively have.  They are also full of mysticism and mystery.  Snakes, are definitely one of them.

My dear friend Jennifer lost both her parents last year.  This year has been one of the toughest times of her life. She was very close to her mother.  She is looking at her life differently now because of this. I believe her perception is changing.  She had and is continuing to have snakes in her dreams.  A boa constrictor, loose in the house. One playing tricks on her – she knew in the dream she was seeing the snake again and thought “I should’ve known you were here!”  This snake keeps coming and going.  Another, she was able to escape from in a field.

Sometimes dreams are hard to figure out and they take time to work with and integrate the energy of a symbol or an archetype. We have to ask questions. We have to let the dreams speak to us, explore them, honor them. I discussed a couple of these dreams with Jennifer.  I had all my knowledge of snake symbolism and its transformative power ready to go. I’ve had plenty of snake dreams and worked many times with Ted Andrew’s Animal Speak.

So I know the snake is about death/rebirth, the shedding of skin and its mystical nature because while in this state its eyes cloud over and it is said to have the power to live between worlds.  The snake has perception, wisdom, transformative and healing powers.  Dreaming of a snake may be an initiation -  an awakening of your life force.  This could be creativity, sexuality – all energies found within Kundalini, subtle energy that is within each one of us.  In yogic culture, kundalini is symbolized as the snake coiled up at the bottom of our spines, until it is aroused, then we quickly begin to experience its power unleashed in us.  


So we talk about health, jobs and wealth (inner/outer).  But the power of the snake was not resonating solely on any one of these topics. We discuss forgiveness, and we remember her “mama”.  We feel her mother at the core of our conversation the entire time. But we were missing something, just as she felt she didn’t know in the dream but then she knew! It had to be something that goes in and out, the wisdom is there but not acknowledged all the time.

Then I remember “…look into the hearts and souls of others…look more closely into your own heart and soul.” (Andrews, p363).  I ask her “what are you most afraid of?”

“Not being loved,” she says.

Her mama would love her no matter what and now that she is gone, how could she be sure she would ever be loved again?

The dream is talking about everything we discussed, but in order for the shift…she has to love herself as a mother would – her own mother within.


We all have blocks around loving oneself. If not, then you have worked on it for a long time and that is amazing! I’m sure you are sharing this love with the world and that is very important. In this dream, the snake may be here to help transform these blocks within Jennifer. This dream being shared, is a reminder to me of one of the most important aspects of understanding your dreams, which is to develop a relationship to your inner self, which is here to guide you to loving yourself more - to live wholly through the integration of all the aspects of yourself – the dark/light, good/bad, masculine/feminine, etc.

So when you think you know what a dream is about…keep digging…keep asking questions.  When you touch on what your soul is trying to get you to hear – you will know. Your world as you experience it may come crashing down, but trust its for a change in perspective for building it back up again.

This dream guidance would not be here without Jennifer’s recurring dreams of snakes and her fearlessness to share. Our stories and dreams are vulnerable and collectively powerful. I am grateful for you and your dreams Jen.  I hope more of you will be willing to share yours, for they hold wisdom and transformative healing abilities for all of us.


NOTE: Posts may only include part/s of the dream. 


*italicized text = interpretation and/or what resonates for the dreamer




Baby Breaks the Crib

dreams, Animal DreamsAngela Grillo

Throughout my years working with dreams, there is not a woman I know who has not had a "baby" dream.  And it's no wonder, during this intense time of awakening to our full potential, our dreams are guiding us to create.  

"The birth of a baby symbolizes the birth of a new creative idea."  From dream guide Rosalynne Clements Analyzing Your Dreams Dictionary.  This is my dream dictionary of choice, it is the one I most often turn to for insight. There are of course associations one may have to this baby - circumstance of the dream, gender, age, etc. All things to be considered while working with a baby dream. 

I recently had a dream with babies and tigers! If you're having dreams with animals as well, the dreams are really trying to get your attention.  Animal energies, totems, spirit animals coming to you in your dreams, I believe are a sign you are tapped into the spirit world around you.  Listening to animal medicine can teach us so much about our true nature, instincts and where the energy wants to go. I dream of animals often, so Ted Andrews "Animal Speak" is my number one bedside table book.  His insight will help me unpack this short but fully loaded dream I had.


Dream Aug 19, 2017: "Baby Breaks Crib"

I'm watching all these children. 3. Two young girls and the baby boy (looks like the boy I watch). The girl keeps wanting to be up. It's like 3am and she gets up and so does her lil sister and the boy wakes up too but I leave him in his crib. I'm trying to clean up and get them back into bed. I say "you have each other to sleep with, now it's time to go back to bed!" I sort of chase then back into her room- she's really not listening and says back something like "I can be up!" As we head back in there - they're in before me...I see a tiger. Oh fuck, a tiger has gotten in and another one- a cub? Oh no, the little girls will totally get eaten. I run in and kind of yell. The older girl comes out- I have to get the younger one. I'm waving for her. (They seem 4 years old. Maybe 4 and 2 but mature for their age).

The baby broke his crib. The mattress is on the floor- wood bars.


I start with the baby and the children.  CHILDREN represent a whole new life ahead of me, a new start.  I love kids so they also symbolize joy and innocence, and truth for me.  These girls are me, the divine self and the baby is a new creative endeavor.  Their ages also inform me on when the creative idea may have started.  Many things have changed in the last ten months to four years, but what resonates for me, is the connection between how my dream work was developing throughout this time.  I began studying Jung's Redbook four years ago, two years ago I entered an MFA program where I created Dream Crafting and ten months ago I was preparing to leave San Francisco and beginning my move to New Orleans.  I could see none of this until now, when I dream of the baby breaking the crib.  I have outgrown the old relationship to my dreamwork into something more beautiful and nurturing - which, the tigers presence represent. This somewhat abandoned child, the part of myself I have been learning to love is miraculous and has expanded to break the container, the space in which he sleeps soundly.  Consciousness has broken through. Dream crafting is the creative idea, which I was writing in my thesis ten months ago.

It all clicked when I read more into the tiger - there is a mother and a cub.  For me the cub represents a new way of being through tiger energy. The tiger represents "passion, power, devotion, and sensuality.  They have a mystical quality...they display great motherly devotion with their offspring." (Andrews, p318)  The mother is here protecting her cub and I am here protecting the children - all of the creation within me.  This is a sweet double image for me, seeing the tigress as a reflection of me, also in the bedroom, where we sleep, dreamthe unconscious becomes conscious.  I see the bedroom as my sanctuary.

FEAR in dreams is often the EGO's fear.  The tiger is here as a helper and a gift.  My dream ego is frightened of course, but the tiger is not there to harm me or the children. She is here as a symbol that "new adventures, renewed devotion and passion for life are expected to begin within 6-8 weeks and last for a year and a half." (Andrews, p319).  I had this dream eight weeks ago and I am now in the thick of my new adventures with Dream Crafting!


NOTE: Posts may only include part/s of the dream. 


*italicized text = interpretation and/or what resonates for the dreamer