I’ve also had the one where I’m 15 again and walking toward my 10th grade locker, only to look down and see that I’ve forgotten my top and – darn it – my real-life bras just never look like the bras you see on the Victoria’s Secret cuties.
But the phantasm scenarios that really haunt me are the dreams like the one I had last night. These dreams , which I have had a million times, involve being unprepared:
- Unprepared to give that speech I am slated to give, with not a notion in the world about what I’m expected to speak about, as I stand before an audience of 1,000 people.
- Unprepared to talk off the top of my head while being videotaped for a news site.
- Unprepared as a teacher to give a math lesson in front of the principal because I didn’t even know I was teaching math this year….and there are a dozen others.
Last night’s bad dream had an education theme like that third one. It took place at a school completely new to me so I didn’t know my way around the building. Worse yet, I was a student yet and it was a Spanish II class I enrolled in and was expected to attend , only I had apparently skipped all of Spanish I, skipped it for whole months at a time over the previous school year.
This is the kind of thing that really makes my vision wobble and pulse in any bad dreams: the idea that I didn’t just fail to prepare for one single event, but that for dating back who knows how long , I had been derelict. I had failed to do the work.
I’m a woman, so you can see why this would terrify me. Because women do DO the work. Women do the reading. Women wouldn’t dare close their eyes on a school night without knowing just what clothes the kids will be able to put on in the morning and just what food they’ll be able to eat before they get home from school again tomorrow.
Women get the job done – not unlike the more than 300 years of immigrants to these shores have done. Take a minute now and listen to this cut from the runaway Broadway hit Hamilton. It’s about the embryonic nation and Washington’s victory at Yorktown. To me it’s very inspiring and illustrates the truth of what the hitherto marginalized can accomplish. Plus the music! Ah, that music ….!