Saturday, May 25, 2013

Dreaming Back to School

My second time through...
This late little while, I've been suffering from a nasty recurring dream. Conscious of my college degrees, my professional experience, and my forty-plus years of age, I find myself enrolling in high school again. And not the nice, small-town high school where I was somewhat happy and graduated with honors, but the inner-city educational slum where I pouted, grumbled, and wasted a couple of the unhappiest years of my teenage life.

These are not the dreams I had back then, and through college—the dreams of being lost in the labyrinthine halls of my own school, missing deadlines, missing classes, missing exams, missing entire terms, and being helpless to catch up. Nothing like that. These dreams depict mundane, everyday school work, extracurricular activities, and research. These things, in themselves, are all right. The trouble comes while I try to fit in among students of a younger generation, and move among them undetected, and justify to myself this return to an educational level I have long since moved past. The thing that makes me wake up with a shudder of horror and despair is the sense that everything I have already achieved is going to waste.

And that pretty much sums up where I'm at in life, and my state of mind as I reflect on it.

The old dreams of failing and falling short, losing my way in the academic jungle, were appropriate when I was still in the striving-for-success phase of my career. Now the vocation(s) that represented my highest achievement in life have rolled up like a scroll, and I find myself in my forty-first year of existence, overqualified, under-employed, and getting chewed out by my hourly supervisor at the discount retail chain where I enjoy what gainful employment I have been able to find. A job to which I could have aspired even if I had dropped out of high school at age 16.

I guess that shows how well one's dreams reflect one's conscience...

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