Woman in dreamland, hearts

Imagine waking up after having the most beautiful dream about your loved one on the Other Side. You feel a great sense of peace and comfort. And you wonder … was that a visitation dream?

It’s not uncommon to dream about our loved ones in the Spirit world. But how do you know if it’s a visitation dream or a dream sparked by a thought or memory?

While I’m not a dream expert, I do know they can be triggered by a variety of things that happen while you’re awake. But dreams created by thoughts or memories are different than visitation dreams, as people on the Other Side have repeatedly confirmed to me.

Here are a few ways to tell the difference:

Vivid Details — One difference between a visitation dream and a memory dream is in the level of detail. Even though they can be very brief, visitation dreams are usually extremely vivid. They tend to be in color rather than black and white.

Related video: Spirit Communication: How to Tell a Real Sign

I was actually introduced to some family members I didn’t know here in the physical world by one of my grandmothers in a visitation dream. That was pretty neat!

Profound Feelings — Visitation dreams might feel like they happen in a lighter sleep state, leaving you feeling very peaceful. It can be a great source of comfort to have your loved one show you that they’re doing just fine on the Other Side, even if they don’t say a word. Feelings after a visitation dream can be very profound, as if you’ve just had a visit with your loved one. (Because you have!)

While dreams created by thoughts or memories might bring you a sense of comfort, the impact isn’t quite as powerful. The images and feelings from a visitation dream often stick with you long after you’ve been awake … sometimes they don’t ever fade.

Unusual Clarity — Dreams created by memories of your loved ones on the Other Side tend to be less clear or even a little mixed up, just as they would in a regular dream. You might not know what they were trying to convey. In a visitation dream, messages are usually more direct.

Strong Certainty — Even though loved ones often send signs from the Spirit World, you might not notice or be as sure of them as when they communicate through a visitation dream. Chances are, you won’t question a visitation dream. The feelings will speak for themselves. You’ll recognize the signs as real. You’ll know.

Not Getting a Visitation Dream? Don’t Worry.

Visitation dreams feel real because they’re one way our loved ones on the Other Side connect with us. Because we miss our loved ones and want to stay connected with them, we all wish for visitation dreams. Unfortunately, wishing doesn’t make them happen.

In my 12+ years of doing medium readings, I cannot tell you how often someone on the Other Side verifies that their loved one has been asking them to visit in a dream. But it hasn’t been possible, for a variety of reasons.

People in the Spirit world have shared some of those reasons with me. One is that they haven’t quite learned how to do it yet. It’s not that they don’t want to visit you, it’s that they don’t have the ability — yet. Just like here, some people learn lessons more quickly than others on the Other Side.

Related: Why Isn’t My Loved One Visiting Me in a Dream?

Others have shown that they’ve tried to jump into a dream but couldn’t make it through because someone is too light a sleeper, a very deep sleeper (like me), has disrupted sleep or takes medication that affects their sleep.

(Note: Sleep is so important, especially when we’re going through difficult times. Please do not put pressure on yourself to change your sleep habits or patterns for the sake of a visitation dream. And never stop taking a medication without conferring with your doctor.)

Try not to compare yourself to others who are getting visitation dreams. Spirit communication can be easy, yet complicated and is different for everyone.

Even if you’re not getting visitation dreams now, that could change at any time. More importantly, chances are, your loved one is sending lots of other signs. Whether in a visitation dream or otherwise, welcome those signs. Remember, your loved ones want to stay connected with you just as much as you want to stay connected with them.

Need a little help connecting with your loved ones?

Amy provides individual, two-person, small- and large-group medium readings.

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