I awoke this morning feeling quite out of sorts...not myself...whoever THAT person is! There seemed to be the dusty reminants of a dream hanging onto my psyche, clouding my thoughts, and producing the ill at ease feeling. I decided with time to spare before falling out of bed and beginning my daily routine of preparing (or "repairing") to go to work, I would take a few minutes to myself and attempt to sort my "out of sorts" out.
The dream WAS a work dream...the kind of dream where one's "performance" comes under the scrutiny of the ever-watchful ego eye. And my ego was painfully aching from this particular dream.
The setting was a combination of my work office and my home, specifically my bedroom where I SLEEP. For some reason, I was working the night shift (a shift that not only exacerbates my MS symptoms because of the drastic change in sleep/energy patterns, but one I do not LIKE to work) and I was "lead" on the shift with my coworkers. I was on the pager (meaning responsible for all referrals/calls that came in during those work hours) and meticulously turned it on and verified it as operable. There were no evaluations waiting when I arrived at work, so I decided to lay down and rest, awaiting the first page and call to evaluate...because I was "lead"...subsequent calls would be triaged out to my coworkers.
Somehow, rather than lying down at work, I did so in my personal bedroom...pager grasped tightly in my left hand so as not to lose it or "miss" any calls...and I fell asleep. I was sleeping on my stomach with my left hand tucked under my pillow (later comprehending the pillow must have muffled the bleeping sound of the pager!).
I awoke suddenly (in my dream) and realized I had been sleeping for several hours...it was now 4:00AM (in my dream). I checked the pager and, with much horror, saw where one of my coworkers had been sending me text messages regarding work calls that were coming in...several text messages had accumulated and changed from initially being messages of "There's a call" to "Where the heck ARE you?".
I panicked (in my dream)...somehow I had fallen asleep on the job and had missed very important work. I was surely not only in trouble with my coworker, but also my boss(es).
I dashed out of bed, falling to the floor (because of MS, no doubt), and ran to my office. My very angry and disgruntled coworker greeted me and advised me he had been taking referrals ALL night long, had tried to keep up, but couldn't. I had let him down...I was surely in "trouble"...I was panicked. And THIS is where I returned to full awake consciousness...NOT in my dream. THIS is what was hanging onto the coat tail of my mind and troubling me in my now awake hours.
Dreams are funny business...not often "ha ha" funny business, but *funny* business. So often, they tell a story about us and often that story may not even be one we recognize. Unfortunately for me, THIS dream's particular story was blatantly recognizable...it is the age-old story of self-worth...or lack there of. It is also the story of my life (that has many pages) where I feel inadequate and somehow scrutinized for that "inadequacy".
I won't go into long, dramatic, childhood details in feable attempt to explain my "story" of self-worth or inadequacy...I've already paid thousands of dollars for alleged professionals to hear THAT tale! LOL Instead, I will fast-forward to events of today...not the *root* of this story, but the *blossom*.
I have noticed of late (at least the past few weeks and maybe months) as my work environment evolves and faces many changes (not all welcome, as *change* often is not), that I have been grieving many losses. Losses of how things "used" to be, losses of the illusion of "stability", and losses of a perceived sense of "security". As I grieve these losses and cope with the changes, I feel a vulnerability that is unwelcome as well.
In my job, I am required to be an "authority" (which is somewhat Hi Larry Usly funny because I generally FEAR authority!!)...an unbending tree in the wind...and the final *say* in certain situations. The payoff is, I GET the last word in certain disagreements...the cost is, I must be RESPONSIBLE for that last word, which can sometimes be a heavy weight to carry. It requires a certain amount of psychic strength to "pull this role off"...and any weak spot...vulnerability...can create a place for the *tree* to begin to crumble.
My personal "crumbling" sometimes takes the form of feeling resentments...of placing blame on others...of participating in *gossip*...of withdrawing somewhat so as not to tip my hand to another...and also eventually, in feeling physically *ill*, MS-style...AKA, relapse.
I believe this particular dream in the wee hours of the morning was serving to remind me to get myself in check...to shore up my *tree*, both in my work life AND my personal life...and to take a hard look at how I am managing my own sense of worth and and feelings of inadequacy. The dream was *thumping* my psyche and saying, "Listen up!".
So today, I will try to be more mindful of my interactions...both personally and professionally...and attempt to patch up those places of vulnerability where I have been allowing situations and circumstance to chip away at my *tree*. Vulnerability is not necessarily a *bad* thing...at times, it is a necessity in finding true strength. And that is what I hope to accomplish today and in the next few weeks...a return to my true strength. A return to the SECRET I already know inside myself...with or without my dreams telling them to me in an opposing, negative fashion.
I AM strong...in body, spirit, and mind. I am "enough"...and I most certainly am adequate...