Saturday, 10 April 2021

Dreamscape: A test I have to pass

Playing truant for reason

One school report in secondary school labelled me a truant, to my parents, that word seemed to jump out of the paper and take on a life of its own in their displeasure and disappointment. I was supposed to be in the class, and I was not, I was in the library doing other things that interested me, but that was no excuse, I had to suffer the regimen of class attendance whether I was engaged and enthused or not.

Then when I was at Yaba College of Technology studying Electrical Engineering, there were classes I did not attend as there were times, I was completely clueless as to why I was there. I now put those circumstances to when I suffered clinical depression for which there was no respite or recourse, it was strange I found distractions that helped me through.

In life and in dreams

There was one class I just could not attend after being there twice, the lecturer and I cannot understand how he rose to that position, possibly through nepotism or blackmail, I can not tell. He definitely had a practical understanding of the electrical British Standards, if he had to communicate in any vernacular other than English, he probably would have been excellent, but the medium of impartation was English, and he just did not speak it. He had no proficiency, none at all, maybe if he tried Pidgin English, it grated in my ears; it was intolerable.

Yet, I had to fulfil attendance credits to take the examinations, we had to reach some sort of arrangement in which the truth of why I hated his class could not be part of my cause of mitigation. Something of that episode seems to haunt my dreams and this for years.

Found wanting for testing

Any scenario where I am to sit an examination, there is always one subject where I did not have the notes and completely unprepared that I was a sure bet to fail, it filled me with trepidation.

It generally was a subject that I could not read up on, I needed someone’s notes to get a view of the topics covered so that my revision was aligned. What I am thankful for is I have not had to sit any of these examinations in my dreams to find that I had a pen full of ink but no words to write.

Then in real life, in my finals at the Federal Polytechnic, Ilaro, I realised on the Friday before my mathematics examination on Monday, I had no confidence I would pass the test. There were just too many things that were not in place. By the time I was in that school, I would usually have completed all my revision weeks before the examination week and simply allowed myself more relaxation or rest, maybe a bit of tutoring, but no stress.

Between reality and dreams

This mathematical conundrum bothered me, so I found a primary school and spent Friday evening and Saturday working through problems and finding ways to understand how the theorems and proofs worked, my insight opened up to new methods and better ways to do things, it was like I was blessed with revelation. By Sunday, I was giving tips and even reduced a brainbox proof from a two-page verbosity to the concision of half a page. I scored an A in that paper.

That said, I cannot understand why still in my dreams, I play truant for all sorts of reasons, I am unaware of what test I am about to take, I am aware of a subject in which I am too unprepared that I might just absent myself from the examination, I have to find a friend ready to share their notes and I am caused an unnecessary amount of distress. Just before I wrote this blog, it was mathematics, again.

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