I had some work to finish up this morning. Nothing complicated or lengthy or tedious. I needed a creative approach to a technical question. I read all the materials and pondered some solutions as well as the reasons why those solutions were imperfect.
I went to bed without giving my problem much thought. I began to dream a complicated encounter with lots of people busy doing lots of things. At some point, I realized that there was a woman who could help me. I managed to isolate her from the rest of the crowd and proposed my problem to her. During the course of our discussion, I sat down on the floor and rifled through my papers.
She did not give me an answer. Instead, she explained to me why the solution was going to be difficult and even improbable. “This really just isn’t ready to provide the answer you are looking for. Wait until you have more information and then approach the question.”
“Very well,” I said, explaining that the progress she was expecting to help me was already in the works. But that constituted a different problem, one I will face in the future. I still needed a solution to my immediate problem.
Then I woke up and at once realized what the solution was. I turned it over in my mind and fell back asleep. This morning, when I woke, I sat down and drafted the answer I had recognized. It was exactly what I was looking for, precisely what I needed.
As I lay awake, I also pondered the direction my next story would take. No answers on that issue. I’ll just have to keep thinking, at least until the next time I go to sleep.