3 Dreams: 9.26.15
When I had the first 1 (maybe 2), they were kind of icky, and I didn’t want to write them down. I went back to sleep. The third one was very compelling — although still icky. I woke up and wrote it down in my dream journal, then remembered more and more from an earlier dream, which I also wrote down.
They now seem to be connected, so it’s that much more important that I figure out what they’re trying to tell me.
[Analyses to follow in a later post.]
Something about driving long distances with Spouse. Being back in Illinois [where I was born], but in stretches of rural IL that I’d never been in before. Everything unfamiliar. Maps no help. “How do we get out of here?”
I’m in a huge dining hall, filled with people. I don’t know anyone there. I strike up a conversation with an older man sitting near me. He’s friendly. At some point, it’s relevant that I say, “I’ve lived in 5 states.” But when he asks me which ones, I suddenly realize he’s too interested in me, and it makes me nervous. I almost get the vibe that he’s… trying to track down my life story? I definitely don’t want strangers thinking they understand me because they know ‘where I’ve been’.
I’ve already told him I’d lived in Illinois and Indiana, but I go on to say (thinking fast) that the other 3 are “Tennessee, Missouri, and Arkansas”. There! That’ll confuse things!
[I’ve driven through Missouri a lot, mostly as a kid on my way to Oklahoma. Since I’ve been married, I’ve been to Tennessee several times — to visit the Smokies. I’ve never been to Arkansas.]
I’m in a room in a basement: no windows, all the walls painted white. It’s a classroom. It’s near the end of the semester. I think I’m in graduate school; the class is biology, but it’s not exactly my major.
Teacher hands back all our accumulated work. I see a field report that has a photo of me (a selfie) and I’m grinning. I feel pretty good, remembering that day.
And then I look at my grades.
On the most-recent exam (where I thought I did decently well), I got a D-. [Even though the teacher is now explaining the curve to the class: a 53 is a C. But I got a 58, and that’s a D-?]
She’s “helpfully” included an estimate of what our final grades will likely be, now that there’s just one assignment remaining. For me, it’s, “I’m sorry, but… F.”
I turned everything in. I worked hard. I enjoyed the things we did.
I failed no assignments or tests; I skipped none.
How can I have earned an F?
[In my extremely long undergraduate career, the only F’s I ever got were for classes I didn’t withdraw from soon enough (that I’d stopped attending), and then 2 classes in 1990, 1 of which was a subject I didn’t understand at all (Drafting), and the other (Chemistry), where I’d miscounted how many labs I completed and turned in, an automatic fail.]
The rest of the class has moved on to something fun: a classmate brought in t-shirts they made, and people are picking out the designs they like. Many will get their names put on them. They’re not biology designs, they’re stripes and things, but unusual colors. They’re actually pretty cool, and I like them, all of them. For the first time, I notice the wide range of body sizes and shapes of my classmates, and yet, all the shirts fit. I recognize that as pretty cool too.
The teacher realizes the class has kind of gotten away from her, now that everyone (but me) is feeling very festive. She runs around, trying to reassert her authority, but still remain likable. I realize, for the first time, she’s Trying Way Too Hard to get us all to like her. I feel sorry for her, but distantly.
She mentions an opportunity for “extra credit”: doing a presentation to the class at lunch tomorrow. Visual aids will be required, but otherwise it’ll be kind of informal. (Although still a speech.)
I could do it. Probably. I mean, I know material that I could talk about.
Holy fuck, a speech though.
[I’ve given a lot of speeches for school, beginning in high school. They’ve all been terrible. Truly awful. I get so wound up with fear and anxiety that I can barely talk at all. The one speech I gave that actually was pretty good — as a graduate student — apparently because I fumbled the projector at the beginning, I got a poor grade. Even though I caught myself, made a joke about it, relaxed, was articulate, answered questions, all that.]
But wait. The teacher says I’m going to get an F anyway.
I sift through the other papers, while I’m thinking. There’s something handwritten in here that isn’t one of my assignments or an exam. Well, what is it then? It’s a personal note from the teacher [who is a cis woman ~10 years my junior], “explaining” that it’s “unprofessional” for me to “obviously” not wear a bra.
Tempted to tell her I haven’t ever worn a bra as an adult. 30+ years. Including, obviously, at every job I ever had.
Tempted to tell her I’m transgender, so her “cis woman” standards don’t apply to me.
But no. I decide this class period is the last time I’ll ever be here with these people. I don’t need to come back and watch other people’s lunchtime presentations. Hell, why bother taking the final exam? I’ve already failed.
Time for Whatever Comes Next.
I have no idea what that is.