A nightmare that will not turn into a book

So I’m having recurring nightmares again. No, it’s not a crying girl, or tornadoes, or insane dentists removing my teeth with small, silver hammers. Those are my old nightmares. This week I keep having bad dreams about speaking at schools. The school visit nightmare. ::shudders:: Oh, the humanity. The setting and people are always different but two elements are common – the room in which I am speaking has impossibly bad acoustics (frequently a cafeteria) and in the middle of my presentation, the audience and I have to stand up and change locations. In the dream I am frantic and frustrated because I am running out of time and I can’t finish my presentation and the organizers are disappointed because they had heard such good things about me as a speaker and they are less than impressed. (The students are always nice.) I wake up in a cold sweat.

BH suggests my subconscious is telling me to speak at fewer schools. He has a point.

Today is World AIDS Day. If you are a sexually active person who is not in a monogamous, long-term (and by that I mean years long-term) be smart and make an appointment to get tested for HIV today. This year alone, AIDS has killed more than 3 million people. In America, right now there are almost one million people infect with HIV. Half of all the new cases of HIV infection in America happen to people under 25 years of age. I’m begging here, folks – learn about this disease and protect yourself because I do not want you to die.

Looking for a cool thing to do? Grab a couple of your closest friends and get tested together. If you’re sexually active, testing should be a regular thing for you.

I am HIV-free and have been monogamous for years, so I won’t be getting an HIV test today. However, I am going to a doctor who is checking me out for skin cancer lesions. Maybe we should just call this Body Maintenance Day. Do something nice for your body!

27 Replies to “A nightmare that will not turn into a book”

  1. Nightmaring right along with you…

    I have a similar recurring nightmare, with numerous variations: Through no fault of my own, I’m late to a school visit or speaking presentation. (Driver fails to show up. Address and phone number provided are incorrect. Once I dreamed that I was in a town with seven elementary schools, all of which had the same name. I went from school to school trying to find the right one, and by the time I got there–it was the sixth one I went to–all the kids had left for the day…)

    SVA. School-visit Anxiety syndrome. We need a support group and a website.

  2. Nightmaring right along with you…

    I have a similar recurring nightmare, with numerous variations: Through no fault of my own, I’m late to a school visit or speaking presentation. (Driver fails to show up. Address and phone number provided are incorrect. Once I dreamed that I was in a town with seven elementary schools, all of which had the same name. I went from school to school trying to find the right one, and by the time I got there–it was the sixth one I went to–all the kids had left for the day…)

    SVA. School-visit Anxiety syndrome. We need a support group and a website.

  3. Nightmaring right along with you…

    I have a similar recurring nightmare, with numerous variations: Through no fault of my own, I’m late to a school visit or speaking presentation. (Driver fails to show up. Address and phone number provided are incorrect. Once I dreamed that I was in a town with seven elementary schools, all of which had the same name. I went from school to school trying to find the right one, and by the time I got there–it was the sixth one I went to–all the kids had left for the day…)

    SVA. School-visit Anxiety syndrome. We need a support group and a website.

  4. I have a reoccuring nightmare that I am in school, it is near the end of the semester, and I am just remembering about an entire class I forgot I was enrolled in, have not been attending, and did no homework for…and I freak out. I can’t tell you how relieved I am to wake up and find I’m not in school at all any more!

  5. I have a reoccuring nightmare that I am in school, it is near the end of the semester, and I am just remembering about an entire class I forgot I was enrolled in, have not been attending, and did no homework for…and I freak out. I can’t tell you how relieved I am to wake up and find I’m not in school at all any more!

    1. I still have nightmares of showing up for my German final without having attended class all semester. I haven’t taken German for 21 years. I wish my brain would let go of this one.

  6. I have a reoccuring nightmare that I am in school, it is near the end of the semester, and I am just remembering about an entire class I forgot I was enrolled in, have not been attending, and did no homework for…and I freak out. I can’t tell you how relieved I am to wake up and find I’m not in school at all any more!

  7. Anxiety dreams are the worse. When I was a teacher I used to have these horrid dreams all summer that I was teaching a class that was full of kids AND their parents. There weren’t enough desks, I couldn’t find any chalk, I had one pencil for everyone and only a few books and pieces of paper. Just when I managed to get the class under control and figure out how to get through the lesson, the bell would ring and a whole new group would troop in. The worst part was the parents yanking their kids out the door and muttering, “We’ll get you out of THIS class, don’t worry!”

    What we can’t control, we dream horrid dreams about. Thanks, brain.

  8. Anxiety dreams are the worse. When I was a teacher I used to have these horrid dreams all summer that I was teaching a class that was full of kids AND their parents. There weren’t enough desks, I couldn’t find any chalk, I had one pencil for everyone and only a few books and pieces of paper. Just when I managed to get the class under control and figure out how to get through the lesson, the bell would ring and a whole new group would troop in. The worst part was the parents yanking their kids out the door and muttering, “We’ll get you out of THIS class, don’t worry!”

    What we can’t control, we dream horrid dreams about. Thanks, brain.

  9. Anxiety dreams are the worse. When I was a teacher I used to have these horrid dreams all summer that I was teaching a class that was full of kids AND their parents. There weren’t enough desks, I couldn’t find any chalk, I had one pencil for everyone and only a few books and pieces of paper. Just when I managed to get the class under control and figure out how to get through the lesson, the bell would ring and a whole new group would troop in. The worst part was the parents yanking their kids out the door and muttering, “We’ll get you out of THIS class, don’t worry!”

    What we can’t control, we dream horrid dreams about. Thanks, brain.

  10. I still have nightmares of showing up for my German final without having attended class all semester. I haven’t taken German for 21 years. I wish my brain would let go of this one.

  11. I still have nightmares of showing up for my German final without having attended class all semester. I haven’t taken German for 21 years. I wish my brain would let go of this one.

  12. Actually a book about a writer of young-adult literature — who lives her own anxieties and desires as well as those of her family and her characters — might be a pretty darn good book.

    Or, if you prefer teen characters, perhaps a book about her daughter.

  13. Actually a book about a writer of young-adult literature — who lives her own anxieties and desires as well as those of her family and her characters — might be a pretty darn good book.

    Or, if you prefer teen characters, perhaps a book about her daughter.

  14. Actually a book about a writer of young-adult literature — who lives her own anxieties and desires as well as those of her family and her characters — might be a pretty darn good book.

    Or, if you prefer teen characters, perhaps a book about her daughter.

  15. Hi Laurie.
    I’m a ninth grade student at The Purnell School in western New Jersey. Over the summer we had to read Speak, and I was psyched– I had read the book two years before. I remember my teacher saying, “This is a book about rape.” And I just HAD to read it…not because of the rape, but because it was such a pressing issue. When I got to my new school here, a third of the people hadn’t read the book, a third loved it, like me, and a third didn’t really care. But we all had to pick out different quotes that were our favorites, and they were from almost every page of the book. I liked it how the book was like that-something to agree with throughout. Speak, well, spoke to me. My copy is battered and annotated and even has some Top Ramen broth on one page….whoops.

    A night ago, one of my roommates had trouble sleeping. I gave her a light and a copy of Catalyst and she stayed up reading it, which I guess was beside the point….

    Anyway, other than those senseless ramblings, I just wanted to say thanks. Thanks for writing what you did. They’re like the truths of teen life.

    : )

    Sincerely,
    Beth S.

  16. Hi Laurie.
    I’m a ninth grade student at The Purnell School in western New Jersey. Over the summer we had to read Speak, and I was psyched– I had read the book two years before. I remember my teacher saying, “This is a book about rape.” And I just HAD to read it…not because of the rape, but because it was such a pressing issue. When I got to my new school here, a third of the people hadn’t read the book, a third loved it, like me, and a third didn’t really care. But we all had to pick out different quotes that were our favorites, and they were from almost every page of the book. I liked it how the book was like that-something to agree with throughout. Speak, well, spoke to me. My copy is battered and annotated and even has some Top Ramen broth on one page….whoops.

    A night ago, one of my roommates had trouble sleeping. I gave her a light and a copy of Catalyst and she stayed up reading it, which I guess was beside the point….

    Anyway, other than those senseless ramblings, I just wanted to say thanks. Thanks for writing what you did. They’re like the truths of teen life.

    : )

    Sincerely,
    Beth S.

    1. It is the highest of compliments to learn that your copy of my book is “battered and annotated and even has some Yop Ramen broth on one page.” That is one well-loved book. I am honored.

  17. Hi Laurie.
    I’m a ninth grade student at The Purnell School in western New Jersey. Over the summer we had to read Speak, and I was psyched– I had read the book two years before. I remember my teacher saying, “This is a book about rape.” And I just HAD to read it…not because of the rape, but because it was such a pressing issue. When I got to my new school here, a third of the people hadn’t read the book, a third loved it, like me, and a third didn’t really care. But we all had to pick out different quotes that were our favorites, and they were from almost every page of the book. I liked it how the book was like that-something to agree with throughout. Speak, well, spoke to me. My copy is battered and annotated and even has some Top Ramen broth on one page….whoops.

    A night ago, one of my roommates had trouble sleeping. I gave her a light and a copy of Catalyst and she stayed up reading it, which I guess was beside the point….

    Anyway, other than those senseless ramblings, I just wanted to say thanks. Thanks for writing what you did. They’re like the truths of teen life.

    : )

    Sincerely,
    Beth S.

  18. It is the highest of compliments to learn that your copy of my book is “battered and annotated and even has some Yop Ramen broth on one page.” That is one well-loved book. I am honored.

  19. It is the highest of compliments to learn that your copy of my book is “battered and annotated and even has some Yop Ramen broth on one page.” That is one well-loved book. I am honored.

  20. Amen about the AIDS post. People need to start getting smarter and more informed about this epidimic. I know at my high school it’s not safe to hold a boys hand unless he’s been boiled first because they switch partners so much. I’ve never been able to understand it, but people seem to be losing their morals younger and younger. I am a senior and the new class of sophomores are one of the most open classes I’ve ever seen. They are starting way too young…most are about 15 and aren’t smart enough to even protect themselves. I hope they realize the risks before it’s too late.

    Thanks Laurie,
    Billie

  21. Amen about the AIDS post. People need to start getting smarter and more informed about this epidimic. I know at my high school it’s not safe to hold a boys hand unless he’s been boiled first because they switch partners so much. I’ve never been able to understand it, but people seem to be losing their morals younger and younger. I am a senior and the new class of sophomores are one of the most open classes I’ve ever seen. They are starting way too young…most are about 15 and aren’t smart enough to even protect themselves. I hope they realize the risks before it’s too late.

    Thanks Laurie,
    Billie

  22. Amen about the AIDS post. People need to start getting smarter and more informed about this epidimic. I know at my high school it’s not safe to hold a boys hand unless he’s been boiled first because they switch partners so much. I’ve never been able to understand it, but people seem to be losing their morals younger and younger. I am a senior and the new class of sophomores are one of the most open classes I’ve ever seen. They are starting way too young…most are about 15 and aren’t smart enough to even protect themselves. I hope they realize the risks before it’s too late.

    Thanks Laurie,
    Billie

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