Around 4:30 A.M., I awoke with this dream, one of direction:

I was invited to attend a weeklong seminar with a mixed group of academics in an Old World estate, located in the Swiss Alps. The pine cone-laden evergreens seen from the open windows of my spacious private room scented the air. In the garage was a Rolls Royce for my use.

The first morning, the Director, the seven professors, among whom were my former Jungian analyst, Ellen Sheire, and the other students met around a large oak table in the conference room. The Director’s opening comments frustrated my expectation of being credentialed at the conclusion of my studies. Not so. I was to work with my professor this week, deepen those studies during the coming year, and in the following, return to be tested before being handed over to the next professor as the others were doing. To myself, I moaned that my credentialing would take years.

Then, the Director noted my anger and said, “We didn’t fully inform you about the process because we wanted a candidate willing to learn our way of handling things. We know you’re teachable.”

The Director, a strong compassionate stand-in for the Sacred in my psyche, had arranged everything. I had only to participate. The Old World estate, located in the Swiss Alps, more than fulfilled my need for beauty and order and solitude. The mixed group of academics provided psychic stimulation. The seven professors, together with Ellen Sheire, were seasoned guides into the new learning, ahead of me.

My takeaway from this dream is the need for deeper patience and willingness with the process of my terminal illness. I still have much to learn. I’m not in charge.