The start of the school year is just around the corner.

As if the date wasn’t enough of an indicator, several other factors have drawn my attention to this fact.
1. I’ve seen a steady uptick in emails from the school, including schedules for in-services and faculty information.
2. People have started beginning conversations with me by asking, “Are you ready for school?”
3. Finally, I had my first bad dream.

Dreams have a funny way of revealing our inner state to ourselves.  I don’t remember many of my dreams, but I have a fairly consistent dream that happens as I approach a new school year.  I dream that I am running late for school.  The whole, restless dream consists of me waking up late, realizing I won’t get to school in time (while also being a bit confused because I didn’t think the school year had started yet), and the stressful experience of trying to figure out what to do.  Usually, it is a short dream, but one that is replayed multiple times, giving me the feeling that I am in a constant state of panic and stress.  When I pull myself out of the dream, I reassure myself that school hasn’t started and that it was all just a dream.  Sometimes my heart is panic racing so fiercely that it is difficult to fall back asleep.

One summer, I had this running late for school dream in June and I was pretty annoyed.  I had months of summer left and here I was, panicking in the middle of the night because dream Trish thought it was 7:50 on a school morning.  This year, it held off a bit longer and the first dream came this past week.

As a whole, I like teaching.  Yet the beginning of the school year often feels like buckling into an intense roller coaster with which I have a love-hate relationship.  In a few weeks, I will have a constant supply of papers I should be correcting.  I will be surrounded by hundreds of teenagers and will long for adult conversation yet feel too tired to pursue it.  The new lingo and catchphrases that teens use will become commonplace phrases I hear and I will be constantly trying to decipher what is appropriate and not.

Yet I will also spend my days speaking about Jesus and attempting to teach them how to enter into relationship with the Lord.  I will be laughing at my students jokes and antics.  As new students enter the room, I will be seeking to understand them and learn about them during the short time we have together.

Next week, I will find myself in hours of in-service and excited/hesitant about the start of another school year.  Please say a prayer from my students and me, that we will be sources of sanctity for one another and all get out alive!

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