I’m not naked. On one side, a cement ramp rises at a fairly steep slant, the ramp is bordered by a handrail, a thick tube of solid steel. On the other side, rows and rows of lockers. Lockers of the type you see in high schools, or, movies about high schools. The wall of lockers extends, seemingly, forever in both directions. I race along the cement path, seeking to find my locker. I can’t find it. Or I do, and I’ve forgotten the combination. Why race to find my locker? I forgot about a test. A test I must take. To take the test though, I need to get something out of my locker.
I’m not naked, as I said before. Nakedness, the stereotype of bad dreams, would be a slight embarrassment, a minor inconvenience compared to the terror and angst this nightmare produces. I’ve had this particular nightmare, in various forms and in various degrees, going far back as the ramp and rows extend. If life puts me under significant stress, I expect the dream.
I’ve not had it yet this month though. I expect it in the midst of financial fear, a result of not selling a large piece of real estate, coupled with a bad economy, and a job that pays too little. It’s mom’s birthday month too, and I can’t pick up the phone and call her. Can’t call my sister either, she’s not talking to me. So, I expect the dream. Haven’t had it in a while though.
More concrete than the ramp that ascends along the row of lockers is my faith. A faith that’s grown in these last years, through divorce, and child-rearing, and friendships, and richness of life. Walking this path, I’m learning to “cast my anxieties on Him,” because He cares for me. I know that He whom allows the tests, gives me grace to come through the tests. If the dream comes, I shake it off, and press on.
Picture of Lego art by Nathan Sawaya, at Turtle Bay