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Omnivore - The waitress anxiety dream: Will it never end?

The restaurant stress dream that won't leave me alone

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It happened again last night. For the first time in years. The waitress anxiety dream.

It's always the same. I am training at a new job, but no one has really shown me how to use the POS system. My first table comes in and sits. I get to the point where I've delivered their drinks and taken their food orders when the rest of the section begins to fill up. Because I don't know the computer system well, it takes me forever to enter the first table's order. Everything I have to do in the back gets fumbled - it takes me what seems like hours to get anything done. I have three and four and five tables I haven't even been to yet, waiting in my section. Etc, etc.

These dreams seem to last the length of an entire shift, and they're incredibly detailed. I could draw you a floor plan of the restaurant from my dream last night, complete with table numbers (this was a kinder dream than some, where I have no idea what the table numbers are but must try to deliver food anyway). I know the menu and the orders I took. I woke up in the middle of the dream and groaned - ugh, this is NOT restful. But I fell back asleep and continued right where I left off except my thoughtless time-wasting had put me even more in the weeds.

I haven't waited tables in almost ten years, but I expect to have these dreams until I die. And while I've worked other stressful jobs - in fact, I've had many jobs that were, in my awake life, far more stressful than waiting tables - but none of them have stayed with me in this way, the stress embedded into my subconscious for decades.

Is this universal? Or just me?