I have this recurring anxiety dream: I am in college and have signed up for an advanced calculus course--my most challenging subject. (Sometimes, my dream will mix it up, and it will be physics instead.) I then promptly forget about the class for the entire semester: I don't go to class, I don't buy the books, I don't read the books, etc. Around the time of finals however, I suddenly remember about the class, and I FREAK OUT. Suddenly, I have to take a final in a class that I have not been attending. It is in my most challenging subject and one that I have no hope of B.S.ing. This dream creates such fear and panic inside of me. I inevitably wake up hyperventilating and berating myself for my stupidity for overlooking such an important class.
Last night I was introduced to a new category of anxiety dreams. I have termed it the "You are a Failure as a Parent" category.
I dreamt that we had our baby. However, instead of it being a boy like we expected, it was a girl--a girl that we had to dress in blues and browns since we had no girl appropriate attire. What was worse: we had no girl name picked out and in the stress of the moment (white-robed officials bearing down on us, asking us repeatedly for a name) we branded her with some long and ridiculously outlandish name.
We took her home, showered her with love and kisses, put her down to sleep, and then....... promptly forgot about her. For hours on end. Like an entire day while we are gallivanting around doing who knows what. At one point in my dream Mr. F. asked, "How is the baby?" to which I replied, "Oh Crap! We have a baby!" I rushed into the nursery to find the baby thankfully alive, awake, and staring at me reproachfully as if to say, "what kind of lousy mother are you to leave me alone and starving." Because of course I hadn't fed her at all. Apparently, I didn't learn my lesson either because this scene is repeated over what I can only assume is the course of a few days.
Obviously, I have anxiety over my ability to take care of a small baby and be a good parent. I can only imagine the endless variations this dream can have. Here is looking forward to the next 20-odd years of parenthood.