I spent six years in High School.
Lately, I’ve been having recurring dreams where the setting is more or less the campus proper. It used to be an eldritch combination of my alma maters (i.e. my Primary School and High School), but that has been shifted in focus to represent my high school in a more detailed fashion (excluding the extra-dimensional frameworks dreams usually manifest themselves in).
These dreams tend to depict an implied time period set approximately in my fourth/fifth year, with a strong foreboding emotion of an end-of-year major, major examination. This part is uncanny, since my High School, unlike most other tertiary educational institutions in Singapore, do not offer the Singapore-Cambridge GCE ‘A’ levels. We spend six years studying for in-school examinations conducted each semester, the results of which contribute to our final GPA for our graduation diploma (our school follows the modular system that Universities/Colleges apply). There is no one, ultimate examination.
And yet, there is a sickening feeling permeating in these dreams that I have yet to accomplish something of a massive scale in the past – The reality is that I have obtained my lackluster diploma since two years ago (I recently finished my conscription cycle), and I’m currently interning while waiting to enter college.
I see the hazy faces of seniors, paired with an afterthought of moving on with life after High School, after University. I climb the stairs and walk the extra-dimensional, larger, more complex-than-life corridors in a haphazard, aimless manner. Struck with anxiety about not graduating. Despite already being an alumni of two years. Dreams tend to be visually unclear, but can be extremely stark in emotional nuance. Many objects or landmarks however warped is tagged with an emotive quality. My friends, juniors, seniors have moved on in life and I’m somehow wandering around, being constantly late or worried about preparing for a national examination that does not exist. Unable to envisage the sixth year or the future, plagued by a momentary amnesia where I forget that I’m already living in the future.
Somehow, these dreams have occurred before my decision to join Instagram. Perhaps they have been amplified, after seeing everyone I knew in High School having the time of their lives – The other girls previously from my batch on their summer breaks before their third year of College, seniors with their graduation pictures.
The stagnation is stifling, anxiety-inducing. I’m doing things, participating in art-related events, submitting my writings. However none of it feels like it is amounting to anything.
In time, I’ll matriculate. It for the best if I can leave these insecurities behind by then to make my time in College worthwhile.