Wednesday, August 29, 2007


I am not permitted to say those three words out loud (shhhh, I'll whisper them, looking left and right and left again...Back to School...shhh!).

Cassie and Caroline don't like school. Neither do I. We know it's necessary and once it gets going we give it our best. We even enjoy most days, but summer is summer and we love it. We hate to say good-bye to outdoorsy days, barefoot playing, blue sky, gorgeous sunsets, starry skies, gardens bursting with color and produce, short sleeves, and all those carefree, beautiful, easy-living type things.

We none of us like sitting at a table and going over information that someone has declared we need to know.

Little rebels.

BTS - Back to School.


Last night I had my decades-long nightmare again. Seriously, WHEN is it going to stop revisiting and smelling up my peaceful Sleep-Land? I've had this demonic night vision since I was in junior high! Maybe you've had it, too, or some other such horrific version of your own?

It goes like this. It's the first day of school in September and I'm sitting at a desk in a classroom when the screeching bell blares (I cringe at the very thought of that sound). I'm out of my seat, everyone is laughing, filing down the halls in good order, I am caught in the rush, but I don't know which class is next. Where am I supposed to go? Oh no....think, Cherie, think! I search through my denim binder: new pencils and erasers in my plastic-zipped pouch, plenty of binder paper, pastel-colored separators, no class schedule. Anywhere. But I find my locker number.

Three minutes have passed. The You'd Better Be in Your Classroom or ELSE! second bell blares. I'M NOT IN MY CLASSROOM! Panic!! The halls are empty, their emptiness makes a sickening, echoing sound somehow. Cold metal lockers. Shiny white tile floors. Buff-colored walls. Too-bright, merciless fluorescent lights in a row overhead burning into the top of my skull, "Get to class! Get to class! Get to class!! You're late late late!" Uh. Uh. For lack of anywhere else to try, I head for my locker. Yes, yes, here it is. Number 326. Okay, Good. Open it and find your class schedule.

But WHAT'S THE COMBINATION??!!?? I have no clue. Think. Think. Think. Blank. Blank. Blank. More panic. More screaming overhead lights, metal coldness, aloneness, failure, stupid, what-am-I-going-to-do?

To the office I head. Where's the office? Flushed cheeks, and sweaty-palms. Aren't you glad you use Dial? Don't you wish every body did? I wander around trying to hold back my tears. Finally, the office door appears in front of me. I walk up to the high, dark wood counter and stand behind kids and adults who are happy. Laughing. Oblivious to my presence. I speak. No sound. I am invisible. I search my binder again. Panic seizes me hard, I gasp for air, I can't breathe, the 'others' look at me, point at me, and laugh louder, harder. Tears pour out of my eyes and drip onto the hard white tile. No one cares......I can't get out of the office, the door is gone, I can't remember my locker number, what class am I supposed to be in, laughing pointing people...........

And I wake up, sobbing, gasping for air, clutching my throat, sitting straight up in bed, tears are on my cheeks, sweat is plastering my hair to my forehead, and my pillow is damp.

"Can't remember your locker combination again?" Tom murmurs.

"Yeah. Yeah. That's it," I answer acting brave for I really am terribly upset. My emotions don't know that the nightmare is a poser.

"Stupid school."


tshsmom said...

Yup, I have that nightmare. I also have variations where I forgot my shirt, or my pants, or I'm running through the halls in my bathrobe.

We homeschool year 'round, as Z has periods where reading and writing are excrutiatingly slow for him. We take our breaks when his frustration level gets maxed out.

Ann said...

Yes, the School Nightmare is a very common one. My version is that mid-way through the semester I realize that I have not been attending a class that I'm registered for. In my dream, I never know whether to just sneak in there & hope no one notices, or try to talk the office into withdrawing me, or what?? Then there's the anxiety over the possibility of my parents finding out!

Cassie said...

MOM! You just posted curse words all over your blog! *gasp* "BTS" How could you! I thought we agreed never to speak of it! : )

LOL! That's a terrable dream! Luckily I never have had one like that! My only repeat dream is when I am the star of the Jurassic Park Movie... long story short, It is horrifing but I always save the day in the end! Tee Hee!

Cherie said...

Oh, you guys are too funny!

Tshs, we homeschool too and have the flexibility public school does not afford, just as you do. STILL......getting in those mandatory things can be a time-wasting pain in the neck when there is so very much we WANT to learn. Your dream sounds equally baaaad.

Ann, now that you mention it I have had that variation, too, the not taking the class and being so very's rough stuff.

Cassie, I so sorry. (You'll have to tell me about this dream of yours. I'm not surprised you save the day. You do that in real life, too!)

All of you ladies, here's to pleasant dreams, fulfilling studies, and a great school year for all of us!

cecily said...

Those recurring dreams are really a nightmare aren't they! You'd think the old brain would be smart enough to pick up it's a rerun and... I don't know... wake up!

Here's to good sleep for the rest of the holidays!

Mike S said...

Bad news, they're still with me on the wrong side of my 60th birthday. Mine is always the same. One day I come to work and they won't let me past security as I'm no longer qualified to work there. Seems I missed graduating high school by 1/8 of a credit and they just found out during an audit. Now they took away my college degrees as well since I wasn't qualified to attend university without high school. I go back, get the 1/8 credit and graduate, but now they'll not let me into university as I'm too old by their standards. Very unpleasant dream:(

Cherie said...

I know, Cecily, you'd think after all this time my sleeping mind would just laugh at the dream. Oh well. Thanks for the pleasant wishes for a good sleep for the rest of summer. So far, so good.

Very unpleasant indeed, Mike. That IS bad news, for you AND for me. On one hand it's nice to learn I'm not alone. On the other hand my heart goes out to you (and everyone else in our nightmare club). You've been at this school nightmare a bit longer than I have! Ugh! Is it some kind of insecurity or inferiority complex, some deep-seated fear of failure, some odd stitch in the human psyche, what? I don't know. Oh well. Thankfully they are few and far between!

Marianne Elixir said...

I love hearing everyone's dreams!
Mine recurring nightmare is not always in the school setting, but it always involves me sitting on a toilet in the middle of some large social setting (school, a party, etc). My pants are down, and I am terribly frightened that if I pull them up people will notice that I've been sitting on a toilet - since, of course, no one has yet to find it unusual. I have no idea what this means!
Being the nerd I am, I often have dreams that I am back at school (usually Gutenberg, though it is often in a new campus) but I am always bummed when I wake up.

Cherie said...

Yes, M., dreams are very telling. Your toilet one sounds particularly interesting....and horrible.

Are you bummed when you wake up because you were having a good time in your Gute dream, back at a place you loved?

Joe moves on campus tomorrow. Pretty excited!

deanna said...

May your sleep be peaceful for a long while, Cherie. My dreams about classes sometimes have the negative elements already mentioned, but they don't affect me badly for long. I think my mind has accepted that school can be done differently, so I can choose to blow off those institutional regulations! Plus whenever I feel yucky school emotions coming on, I go read old Peanuts comics. Charlie Brown always makes me feel better.

Wandering Coyote said...

Man, I have a similar recurring dream, too! Always back in high school, cannot remember where my locker is OR the combination. My friend Budgirl95 always seems to remember my combo, though. Then I realize I haven't been attending math or science and there's a test... Or, I realize I'm back in high school after being graduated for 15 years and I can't understand why I, along with all the others I was in school with, am doing back there.

Now in my dreams, when a teacher accuses me of skipping out or missing a test, I turn to him or her and say, "Look, I have BA from a real university. I really don't need to be here, you know." I awake amused that I have said this to a "grown up."

Pam said...

Your kids will never have that dream because they went to the best school and had the best teacher! (And the nummiest school lunches!)

Cherie said...

WC, it's so strange how universal these dream are. Makes you wonder if we are all hynotized by the school system and are running on programs now. The dreams are our brains reaching out.....LOL. It IS funny how you assert yourself to a 'grown-up' in your dreams.

Pam, you are so nice! Thanks!

Angela said...

wow. that's an intense dream.
ya, mine include nudity, exams for classes i haven't attended, and drama performances i haven't memorized and i love school!

Cherie said...

Angela, that whole nudity thing and classes we haven't attended, performances not memorized... wonder what it's all about. Are we ALL suffering from inferiority complexes? It's. Just. Weird.