No, I don't mean the bureaucracy and paperwork that teachers have to complete. I mean the real, honest to God dreams that go south and make you wake up in a cold sweat. There are dreams that I wouldn't have unless I was a teacher. People seem to find these funny, but I really wake up completely horrified sometimes.
Some of the dreams seem to be common for people. You're in your dream and you realize you signed up for a class and you never went! When I was in college, I always dreamed it was a Spanish class. I guess it was Spanish because there was no way I would be able to fake my way through the final that I was late for, despite not remembering that I signed up for the class. I'd wake up, freak out and immediately check my schedule to see there were no Spanish courses listed for me. I expect these dreams will come back as I entered college again to get my second masters.
The variation now that I'm a teacher is that I somehow missed some required class in high school and I have to make it up. I, a twenty something adult with a career and a family, have to make up some random high school class. But that's okay! I can take it at my school, with my students as my classmates during my planning period! And for some reason, the teacher is really mean to me and I have tons of homework that I'd never give my students. So I don't get my planning and I'm doing hours of homework for this one class and all of my students seem to do it easily and laugh because I'm having such a hard time. I get mad and snap at them that some people have to work in addition to taking this freakishly hard class. And then I made them cry because I snapped at them and I feel awful.
Sometimes I have dreams that I've moved classrooms and I'm teaching thirty kids in what amounts to a broom closet. Other things are usually wrong. Sometimes my computer breaks. Sometimes they tell me that I don't teach English anymore, but math or science.
They are all anxiety dreams. They're a stand in for some other anxiety that I'm feeling. The problem is that I sleep to get some rest, but I wake up more tired than when I went to sleep in the first place.
Sometimes I wonder what the specific nightmares are for other professions. Do lawyers have nightmares about the courtroom? Do nurses dream that they have a hundred patients and no help? What are your job related nightmares?