I had a dream last night that I was involved in some kind of physical challenge activity or reality show or something, and the task in front of me was to climb to the top of a tall, narrow ladder or a rope or something. I vaguely remember it being a narrow metal structure, like a freestanding ladder to nowhere. It seemed like it was 25 feet high or so.
In my waking life and in most dreams, I am absolutely terrified of heights. Even climbing a short stepladder is enough to make my chest tighten up. So the prospect of climbing this thing was just absolutely daunting and frightening.
My coach was one of those women who played softball or soccer in college, and was really tan and hard-core and kind of sounded like a dude. She was really enthusiastic and pushed me without being overly feelgood or bootcamp about it, and slowly I began to climb.
I was shaking like a leaf from exertion and fear. All of the other towers stood empty, as the other participants had finished and headed in for the day. The sun was starting to set and it was getting cool but dammit, I was going to make it to the top. So I bit down hard on my fear and forced myself up the ladder rung by rung.
And I made it to the top. I had this feeling of exhilaration like I’d never felt before. I made it to the top! I couldn’t wait to hear what the coach had to say. I was immensely proud of myself, and though coming down the ladder was still scary, it took half as long as climbing it.
I got to the bottom and stood there grinning like a fool on a total adrenaline high. And the coach came up to me and said,
“You were totally flashing your panties during that entire climb. I think you need to get some bigger gym shorts.”