The first nightmare was disturbing because it featured me looking my dad in the face and not recognizing him, but that was nothing compared to the second nightmare.
I dreamed that I entered a contest on KCBI, one of the local Christian radio stations. I was one of four who entered, and Tim was another of the four. The contest involved fitting the right number of thumbs into a small space and then being x-rayed to see if we did the right number and if they were positioned clearly. I was holding Ilse in my left arm per usual and had chosen to smash two fingers into the space. I had a hard time holding the position but the radio person kept giving me extra chances. Finally it came down that Tim and I won if we could answer the final question.
The guy asked me to describe our finances and I told him we didn't have any savings, etc. I sounded pretty decent but way too bright and cheery. I think it was early morning by that time as the contest had begun in the middle of the night. Then the guy asked me to solve an equation that was something like 1500(2) + x = ??. Except I didn't hear the whole equation because I was so drowsy my mind wandered in the middle, so by the time the radio host got to the end and was waiting for me to answer, all I could come up with was "I can't do math!" in a fake southern accent... I sounded as stupid as the two following women:
In fact I sounded more stupid. I knew I sounded stupid but I couldn't fix it. I didn't try to explain. Then the radio host moved on to Tim and he got the answer correct. Of course he did, because he's not quite as exhausted as I am apparently. Then we were off the air and the radio host told me he wanted to speak to me. He said that he was sorry he sounded so hard on me, and that's when I explained my life to him. I told him I have a disabled husband, a son with mental health issues (in my dream I told him the whole story about that), a child with a syndrome, etc. I told him I know how to do math but I was too out of it to realize I could ask him to repeat the question because I'd dozed through it. He was sorry but of course there was nothing he could do to repair my reputation, but at least he didn't think I was as stupid as I'd come off.
Then we were walking out and my parents met us just off the staging area. Mom said someone had hugged her and said, "I'm sorry" to her for how dumb I was. And my poor dad was just in disbelief. Mom said that this was the best I'd ever looked and most fluent I'd ever spoken on camera and it was too bad that I'd just come of as.... (she paused) stupid.
Then I woke up.
I didn't even get the satisfaction of hearing how much we'd won.
I still haven't gotten over that dream. It made me feel impotent (first definition, not the second) and ridiculous.
I hope I don't come off that way in real life. I hope I can continue handling my life (with God's help and a huge helping of grace).