The Dream: I'm about to get into a full car. My brother Greg sits in the spot I traditionally sat in as a child, behind my mother. There's no room for me, so I want Greg to scoot over, but instead he gets out of the car, leaving me to sit next to my friend Polly. Greg now appears to be a child, about 5 or 6, and he's happily playing with a spotlessly clean dog with white fluffy fur. I'm having a hard time seeing him and the dog from where I sit so I shift positions to get a better view.
The car pulls away, leaving the two of them, and I begin to realize this was a vision because I am now aware that Greg has died. I say to Polly, “Did you see Greg?”
“Yes,” she says. I get some comfort from realizing that others have seen him as well.
I want to verify this so I ask her what he looked like. “Like you,” she says. “He is small, with sandy-colored hair.”
“How old is he?” I ask. Has she seen him at a different age?
“About 18,” she says.
“No,” I say. “Greg is very tall, and has dark brown hair and dark skin.” I can't think of how to describe his skin color. It isn't olive, but it isn't fair like mine. “He is pale in the winter, but very dark in the summer. His eyes are very dark brown.”
I'm disappointed that we didn't see the same “Greg;” it takes away from the reality of the “event.”
Interpretation: After we die, what's left of us? I'm having a hard time seeing my brother now that he's gone. The divergent images in the minds of two dream characters imply that our “vision” of the departed is so personal that it might have no relationship to reality whatsoever. I look for comfort from my vision; I want “my” Greg to be real. I soon learn that what I see isn't what Polly sees: he differs in every way.
I've pushed Greg out of the car, in a sense. We, the living, have left him behind. He's no longer going where I'm going. His dog companion in the dream, representing my brother's animal (his earthly, physical self), is white (the original color of death) and idealized. Greg seems happy where he is.