When I'm stressed, I often have dreams that I'm waiting tables. Usually I'm not in the restaurant where I normally work, mostly because this restaurant is huge - way too big for one server to try to keep up with on their own, even on a slow afternoon. In my dreams, every time I turn around, there will be another family seated at a table (I swear sometimes the restaurant grows larger just to keep letting more humans in). I never get people their food, mostly because I can't even get drink orders. If, by some miracle, the dream allows me to get back into the pantry to start pouring drinks, I quickly discover the restaurant has Pepsi products and not the Coke products that I just took hundreds of orders for. Or, we serve cocktails, which I have to make, and have no idea how to do. Or we don't have the right kind of liquor. Or I have to run outside to make them, but the mixers are all in the pantry. Or some other bizarre thing that doesn't make any sense. It's not the most pleasant experience.
I caught a super nasty gross cold this week, bad enough that I opted to stay in bed instead of heading to class for the better part of the week. While it was definitely the right decision, it put me a bit behind in my work. Because of that, on Friday, (in addition to the hour I spent in class) I worked on a model of a set design for my Theatre Design class from 1pm - 8pm. It was a long day. But I finished!
After my super exciting (that's sarcasm, folks) Friday, I was surprised that I had a stress dream that evening. In my dream, I was in class, and I pulled out my assignment -- of course, being a dream it wasn't my actual assignment, but instead a picture of a ship that I had drawn. Apparently, I had to cut out pieces of construction paper and glue them onto my drawing in order to add color -- and was devastated to find that all of my work was gone. It was just the bare outline of the ship. My hours of hard work were in vain - I had to do the whole thing over again. I remember telling my professor, "Grace, I swear I finished this already!" to which she responded, "I know, Catherine, look in your shirt!". So, I put my hand down my shirt, and between my tanktop and my t-shirt there were all the cut out pieces that I had done previously, and they were already glued (but not glued to my shirt, because, you know, dreams), so all I had to do was place them back in the spots where they belonged on my assignment.
Considering that I don't feel particularly stressed, it's strange to me that I had such a weird dream. According to the psychodynamic theory book I'm reading for my Counseling class, this dream probably means something -- looking back on it now, it's pretty similar to something that happened to one of my friends on Friday, when someone who was "helping" her with a project messed the whole thing up, adding hours more work to her project to redo what the other person had messed up. I don't know if I believe that dreams really mean anything, but I think they're interesting. And fun. And really, really weird. But mostly, I just hope my project is intact when I go to look at it in class tomorrow, because I don't think the pieces will be in my shirt. But I guess weirder things have happened.