Thursday, July 15, 2010


I've always thought that dreams were more of a thermometer than a thermostat - they don't predict what is going to happen, but they are a pretty good indicator of what is going on.

When I first started CPE, I had a feeling that the experience was going to be similar to what I imagined it would be like to run a marathon.  There would be times when I would love it, there would be times when I would hate it, there would be times when I would be running on adrenaline and there would be times when I was just completely exhausted.  I would be happy when it was over, but also happy that I did it.

The other night I had a dream that I was running a marathon.  In the dream I was refusing to look down at my watch, not wanting to know how long I had been running (subsequently knowing how much time I had left to run).  I was having a great time, really getting into my groove and feeling like time (and miles) were ticking by when I decided I would look at my watch.  In my dream I thought that I would have been running at least for 3 hours (if I were to train, I could probably run a marathon in 4 hours).

I looked at my watch.  I had been running for 30 minutes.

For some reason, that dream really freaked me out - but I think it rings true about where I am in CPE right now.  The first couple of weeks were filled with orienting myself to the process, being scared of on calls and dealing with what all of my new experiences meant.  Every day there was something new and something to break up the day.  The time flew by.

Now I'm into it.  I've seen a lot of truly horrific things.  I have sat with individuals and families during tragedies and traumas.  If you had told me about some of calls I've been on before I started, I wouldn't have believed you.  It's starting to wear on me.  In addition to the marathon dream, I've had weird medical dreams.  Sometimes they pertain to me, but sometimes my friends and families are in them as well.  They are weird and unsettling and I don't like them.

I feel like time is starting to drag - and every time I look at my calendar I feel like I did in the dream when I looked down at my watch in the marathon.  I'm not as far along as I feel like I am.  It's frustrating and hard and making me anxious.  I don't want to go into "survival mode" but I feel like that's where I am right now.

I hesitate to post this, because I don't want it to seem like a pity party and I don't want people to worry about me and think I'm falling off the deep end - but I do want to be honest about how I'm feeling.  I'm in the middle of an intense program and it's not easy.  My reactions are normal and there is an end in sight.  I would love any prayers as I turn the corner and finish out the summer (hopefully!) strong.

Thanks friends,


  1. You will make it dear. I had a lot of dreams about the hospital my first month there. For some reason they stopped just last week. I believe in you!! And I will hold you in my prayers.

    I miss you something fierce :)

  2. Sarah, believe it or not, this experience will make you stronger. When I first started, my first twelve weeks were something that I compared hell to. Every single day I would get in my car I wanted to just keep on driving and never come back to that place. And the dreams... oh boy! I was always having dreams about that place! But the more you get used to it, it really does get a LOT easier. I think it's so good that you're able to talk about this and just let it all out. You will end up doing great in the end. You're already doing great, it just might not feel like it every day! I'll keep you in my prayers dear :-)

  3. Hope this doesn't seem corny, but could it be that God is trying to teach/reveal something to you within your dreams. I'm not much of a dreamer so I can't speak too much from experience, but I do remember that both the OT and NT deal some with dreams... Besides, it already looks like you've learned a great deal from your time in CPE...

  4. Sarah, you will get through this, and you will get through it well. In the meantime, keep being honest about what is going on, keep posting, keep finding release. And we will keep praying:-).

  5. Sorry about all the repeats!


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