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  • What Pregnancy Dreams About Death, Water, and Snakes Really Mean

    Women often report strange recurring dreams while they are pregnant. What do these images mean?
    by Lei Dimarucut-Sison .
What Pregnancy Dreams About Death, Water, and Snakes Really Mean
PHOTO BY @Wavebreakmedia/iStock
  • During pregnancy, so many changes happen in your body that you might find it hard to keep track. Some common pregnancy symptoms are morning sickness, breast tenderness, skin darkening and other skin problems, and water retention in your calves and feet, especially during the latter stage of pregnancy. Many of these symptoms can be attributed to hormones secreted by the body during pregnancy.

    It surprises many pregnant women that hormones also affect them psychologically. Having strange dreams during pregnancy, or pregnancy dreams, is something a lot of women experience, but they rarely associate it with this interesting stage.

    According to studies, pregnant women reported having more intense dreams and nightmares than women who are not pregnant. Furthermore, these dreams were more frequent during the last trimester of pregnancy than during the first two.

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    According to Patricia Garfield, Ph.D., an American academic specializing in the study of dreams, “There is a greater amount of actual dreaming and dream recall when a woman is pregnant than at any other time during her life. The dreams will relate to her condition of pregnancy, the trimester she is in, and what is going on in her body at the time.”

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    Some say dreams are the result of an overactive subconscious, a way for the mind to cope with all the changes that are happening within you. It could also be a manifestation of the emotional highs and lows you go through during pregnancy. Garfield, however, believes pregnancy dreams are directly tied to a pregnant woman’s evolving physical and mental state.

    “Dream content changes as a woman’s body changes. Her dreams echo her changing condition and both her hopes and her fears about the coming child,” she says. For instance, women commonly see fertility images in their dreams during the first trimester, such as water, fetus, or fruits, she explains. 

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    Members of the Smart Parenting Village shared with us their recurring pregnancy dreams

    1. Pregnancy dreams about death / dead people / miscarriage

    The most common theme among the pregnancy dreams the Smart Parenting Village members sent in was “death” — whether it’s seeing dead relatives, seeing someone close to them die, orr the mom losing her baby through miscarriage. Interpreted, it could mean an end to something, or a release. 

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    “Pinapagalitan daw ako ni Mama, who’s already in heaven, dahil hindi daw ako marunong maglaba ng dirty baby clothes at lampin kaya siya na lang daw ang gagawa.” - Erlinda Rapada-Gajol, mom of one

    “Nung nagbuntis ako sa panganay ko, nanaginip ako na binuhusan daw ng lupa ng lolo ko yung tiyan ko habang nakahiga ako kung saan ako natutulog. Yung time na yun, 1 year nang patay yung lolo ko. Nagising ako bigla sa takot.” - Karina Gracia Planas Sagosoy, mom of 3 and currently pregnant

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    “Unang panaginip ko, my baby passed away and iyak ako ng iyak dahil parang mababaliw daw ako at gusto ko syang buhayin. Kinabukasan naman, husband ko naman ang namatay sa panaginip ko.” - April Marie, mom of one and currently pregnant

    “Lagi akong nananaginip na patay na daw ang baby ko, o kaya paglabas, patay na.” - Angel Garcia, 7 months pregnant

    “While I was pregnant, I dreamt I had a miscarriage, then my mom was sweeping the floor na may blood with the fetus. I woke up crying hard because I thought I’d really lost my baby, and also because my mom showed up in my dream. She passed away 5 years ago.” - Maricor Lumantas Chan, mom of one

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    “Nanaginip ako ng nitso na mayroong black smoke papunta sa akin at niyakap yung tiyan ko. I lost my first son during labor.” - Jaizhi Tan

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    2. Pregnancy dreams about monsters / aliens / ghosts

    A number of pregnant women reported dreams involving the "tiktik," a mythical creature from Pinoy folklore that preyed on pregnant women, and other imageries that that felt surreal.

    “Nanaginip ako na may kumakaluskos tapos may ‘tiktik’ daw na lumusot sa bintana malapit sa kama namin. Takot na takot ako. Paggising ko, yung kaluskos ay ulan pala, at yung lumusot sa bintana ay kamay pala ng husband ko.” - Alelly Cablao-Hernane, mom of one

    “Noong buntis ako, nanaginip ako na hinahabol ako ng wild creature na kalaban ko sa mobile game na nilalaro ko.” - Danica Imperial-Mariano, mom of one

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    “Nung 4 months pregnant ako, nanaginip ako ng mga fetus na nasa tubig, yung parang sa laboratory. Napakadami. Kahit saan ka tumingin may fetus. Ang creepy.” - Leslie Galvez

    “Lumabas daw yung alien sa tiyan ko.” - Maryrose Manalili Cabral

    “The strangest dream I had was that I gave birth to a furry baby. Sabi pa daw ng doctor, very close sa features ng lion yung baby.” - Agatha Dayao-Arreola

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    “I dreamt of a woman similar to the one in the movie La Llorona. The thing is, hindi pa yun napapalabas noon, kahit trailer, so imagine my horror when I saw the trailer released two months later.” - Ry-Anne Cabrera Salvador

    “Pregnant ako sa 3rd baby ko noong nanaginip ako na nagising daw ako kasi may humihila sa paa ko. Nakita ko may shadow na nakatayo sa dilim. I lost my baby after that at 8 months. I bled heavily (placenta previa) hanggang sa nawalan na siya ng heartbeat bago pa mailabas via C-section.” - Cherry Vi

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    3. Dreams about the baby’s gender or being pregnant

    There are moms to be who recall seeing the face of their unborn baby in their dreams, of finding out the baby’s gender (or sometimes it turns out to be the opposite), or the name for their baby coming to them through a dream.

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    “Napaginipan ko na may binabantayan daw akong bata: singkit, maputi at mataba, kamukha ng partner ko. Tuwang tuwa raw ako. Nagising ako nung tinawag niya akong mommy. Ang baby namin ngayon ay singkit, mataba, maputi, at kamukha ni daddy niya.” - Nirvana Raneses, mom of one

    “Nung malapit na ako manganak, I dreamt about my baby, I was holding him daw at nakatitig ako sa face nya habang natutulog siya. Right then I knew kung ano ang itsura nya, at ganun nga sya paglabas nya.” - Jennifer Edralin-Maribao, mom of one

    “I had a strange dream once na yung anak ko may doppelganger. It happened twice. I was really scared kasi sa dream ko, identified ko kung sino yung ghost at kung sino ang daughter ko, and that really creeped me out. A week later, I found out I was already 6 weeks pregnant...with twins!!!” - Arianne Ambulario, mom of 3

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    “I dreamt that I had a normal delivery that was totally painless, and then after a few minutes I conceived again.” - Meg Ramos Ponciano

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    4. Dreams about snakes

    Seeing a snake in your dream may be unsettling, but while some say it symbolizes emotional turmoil and being in a difficult situation, some people also believe it means healing and transformation are taking place.  

    “Sa panaginip ko, baha dun sa lugar tapos kulay pink yung tubig. Nagulat na lang ako biglang may sumulpot na ahas na dalawa yung ulo mula sa tubig. Ang bilis ng gapang niya sa tubig. Nung malapit na siya, bigla akong nagising.” – Kathlyn San Juan, mom of one 

    “Snake ang laging nasa panaginip ko bago ko nalalaman na buntis ako. With my eldest, ang panaginip ko hinahabol ako ng maraming snake tapos nakagat ako. Sa second child ko, may malaking snake na pilit pumapasok sa bahay. Ganun din sa 3rd baby ko. Kaya I believed na kapag nanaginip ka ng snake posibleng pregnant ka or someone na ka-close mo.” - Anne Su Chu, mom of 4

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    “I also dreamt about snakes which came out of nowhere. I couldn’t understand it at first, but it was telling me that I was pregnant.” - Niña Lazaro-Obial, mom of one

    “I often dream of snakes biting and running after me, pero sabi ng iba it’s either you’ll get lucky or someone is ‘naiinggit’ sa iyo.” - Mary Christine Kalaw, pregnant with first child

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    5. Pregnancy dreams about your partner having an affair

    For some women, their pregnancy dreams have absolutely nothing to do with their unborn child, but instead centers around their partner — their cheating partner. Some say their dreams about their husband having an affair were so vivid they actually slapped the poor, clueless guy when he woke up, thinking the cheating incident was true! 

    “While I was pregnant with my baby boy, I always dreamed about my husband having an affair, tapos iyak ako nang iyak, galit na galit ako. I trust my husband naman and I know loyal siya. Masyado lang siguro akong nadala sa teleserye.” - Marla Balbacal Caguicla, mom of two

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    “When I was pregnant with my eldest, napanaginipan ko na may babae daw si hubby ko, parang totoo. Pagkagising ko, inaway ko siya kahit madaling araw at tulog siya.” - Karen Carlos Taguiam

    6. Pregnancy dreams involving water

    Dreaming about water could mean different things, but generally, water is believed to symbolize a vast sea of emotions or cleansing.

    “Lagi akong nananaginip noon na nasa water ako. Iba-ibang sitwasyon pero lahat may kinalaman sa water. Hindi ko alam kung may kinalaman doon ang pagkahilig ng baby ko sa water ngayon.” - Hannah Faith Baello-Agus, mom of one

    “During my pregnancy, madalas akong managinip na nagka-tsunami sa bahay namin sa province. We live near the beach, sa Lingayen Gulf. Good thing, sa dream ko they were able to evacuate, pero we cannot go back to the house kasi malalaki ang waves.” - Eds Escano, mom of 4

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