As the narrator of the essay ‘Dream Children,’ Charles Lamb gives a personal account of his life that was riddled with numerous tragedies, expressing his feelings of loss and regret. Lamb is depicted as a person inflicted with emotional loss expressing his regret for unfulfilled joy, unfulfilled love, lost hope, lost opportunities and lost joys of life.
Recalling the wonderful childhood and the holidays that he used to spend at his grandmother Ms. Field’s place, Lamb cherishes those lost days and revels in their memory. He sounds comforted while mentioning the love which Ms. Fields had for him and his siblings.
Though, eventually as the essay progresses, we realize the loneliness that resides in the heart and mind of Lamb. Apart from the loss of his grandmother, Lamb becomes emotionally devastated at the loss of his elder brother John L, whom he dearly loved and whose presence he missed in his life. At the mention of his brother’s death, he seems to be in a lot of pain and tends to realize the wide gap between life and death.
Lamb also expresses his grief at his failed attempts to convince his lady love for marriage; Ann Simmons, whom he courted for seven long years. He mentions that the coyness and denial of his lady love caused a lot of trouble in their relationship which shows that Lamb was not authoritative in nature. He tried to convince. Ann but did not believe in ‘forcing his emotions on her’ and submitted to her harsh rejection of their marriage. Lamb, thus, comes out as a submissive person with a personality who accepted all the tragedies in his life without making any strong efforts to re-do things in his favour.
Lamb’s surrender to fate can also be seen when he comes out of his reverie only to realize that the two children, Alice and John, were nothing but his ‘Dream Children’; a manifestation of kids he would have longed to have with Ann Simmons after their marriage. On being aware of his reality once again, Charles finds his sister Mary Lamb by his side; his only faithful companion throughout life.
Hence, Charles in the essay has come out as a personality not too bold and motivating, rather that of a common man submitting to his destiny.