When I was a teenager I had so many dreams. Dreams of making it big, becoming a journalist or a novelist. Being amazing at whatever it was that I did. I had drive and intent and motivation. I moved forward quickly, setting my sights on my prey and leaping with the intensity of a starving animal. I was curious and hungry. And no one could tell me that I would not succeed. No interlopers were allowed in this girl’s dream.
But life changes. You make choices about your future that don’t factor into the grand plan. I remember the day that the fireman was born. I decided to quit my freelance writing job and become a stay at home mother. No matter that we couldn’t afford that, I could see no other way to live my life than to shower every moment of my love and affection upon this adorable little person. When the epidural wore off, I saw my way back to sanity and returned back to the job that paid the bills (even if only barely).
There was a time when that job was my dream job. And then it became a necessity and then, an albatros around my neck. As soon as I could feasibly flee it, I quit and returned to the corporate workforce. Funny how one day your dream can turn into your nightmare. I supposed that’s why they say, be careful what you wish for.
Where once I was on a forward trajectory that could not be stopped, today I’m in a holding pattern that I fear may lose momentum with every day that passes. I do what I need to survive, but when did mere survival become enough? Yes, I have a unique situation, a challenging existence where survival is an achievement in itself, but it’s not conducive to nurturing a young girl’s dreams.
Crap, I’m not a young girl anymore. I’m actually narrowing in on middle age. But a middle age with a young heart and drive that will hibernate but that will not stay down for too long.
Someone reminded me this week that “hope” remains in your dreams, while “intent” becomes your reality. I am intent on writing. I am intent on writing a novel. I am intent on achieving my dreams. Even if I have to be in a holding pattern for a while before getting there. (Perhaps the holding pattern is part of the grand plan?)
*By the way, if you’re wondering what on earth the photo has to do with this post. Not only did I want to be a journalist, I wanted to be a journalist/sleuth, just like my hero, Nancy Drew.