My softmore year I left conventional high school and started independent study. I went one day a week and did the rest of my work at home. Well, that was the theory anyway. The school was extremely unorganized, and my teacher didn't remember from one week to the next what my status was. This left it up to me to keep my ass in gear, and although I think I gave it a better shot than many would have, the rest of my high school career was basically a joke.
I have often had dreams of high school since then. The most common theme is suddenly being there, present day, and realizing that I was supposed to have been attending the whole time. I am hopelessly behind, trying to find my classes, or remember which ones they are. Trying to get my books, or learn entire semisters in a few mintues because the test is coming up. Oh, and taking the bus! Running to try to catch it, walking impossible distances to the stop, missing it. In some of the more recent incarnations, I suddenly remember that I have a car and get very confused. I've had dozens of such dreams, always filled with pannic and stress.
Well, I haven't had a school dream in quite some time, until last night, and I thought it was quite noteworthy.
It actually started off as a job that I had, except it was in a classroom setting. I wasn't feeling well, or maybe I had something important to do, so I got up to leave. My teacher / boss stopped me because I had many hours of work / class left. At this point, I realized that it was really school, not work, and I didn't have the freedom to just run off, and be trusted to get shit done in my own time. There was a kind of "Oh... right" moment while I was talking to the teacher. I explained to him that if he just trusted me, everything would be alright - I would get things done that needed to be done, and he didn't have to worry about keeping track of me. He said that that may be true, but he hadn't really worked with me yet, so he couldn't know that until I proved myself. We made a deal that he would let me go for the day, but I would have to make up for it by completing a project for the science fair. It would have to be really impressive, but then he would trust me. I was thinking that I should ask Adam - he would be able to help me come up with a good project, and trying to think of ideas of what I could do. That was when I woke up.
Okay, so the dream was not too terribly exciting. The signifigance though is in the contrast between it and every dream I have ever had in my life about school. The ongoing theme of previous dreams is stress, panic, inadequacy, struggle. This dream... ha! It was me saying, "Oh, no sir, you don't understand. You see, I can do what I want because I kick ass." And better even yet - the process of taking on something new, and looking forward to the opportunity to learn.