I woke up from a dream that I was in school, a college classroom. The professor was about to start announcing who had passed the test. Before he started talking, I knew I had not passed. He started with the people who had passed outright. Then he went on to the ones he had given the benefit of the doubt, and so had given passing grades. For me, there was nothing said, and no allowances made. I had not passed.
I felt calm throughout the whole dream. Although I knew I had not passed the test, I did not feel like a failure. In the dream I was having no emotional reaction to the event. It felt like I had been through this process with this professor before and I knew what was coming, so I felt no shame or embarrassment about not passing.
The dream is helping me realize that I have come a long way on this journey with weight loss, weight gain and self esteem. Even though I have gained weight and my clothes are not fitting, I do not feel like a failure. By all of society's standards, and by the standards of most people I know, I have not passed the test. But I am calm, and I have no emotional reaction to their assessment of my performance.
In my job, I use a scoring method to make assessments of other people's performance, and I use those assessments to coach and to train. They are not judgments used to shame or blame, but rather a way of identifying places for learning and growth. Even if someone receives a score that is not considered 'passing' the person is not considered a failure. That score gives us a place to start from, when guiding and teaching.
As much as I hate to admit it, I think I'm growing up. Adulthood may have finally caught up with me. Actually it feels pretty good, and I'm not sure why I resisted for so many years, holding onto immaturity that really didn't look good on me. I can't remember the last time I stomped my feet and threw a fit. Pouting used to work really well for me, but it is so much more satisfying to roll up my sleeves and get to work.
I had a dream last night that I felt calm, secure, and at peace. That's what will sustain me and nourish me as I head into this new day.