Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Sweet Dreams

"The storm is breaking 
Or so it seems
We're too young to reason
Too grown up to dream."
                                                                                                                 -Slave to Love, Bryan Ferry

Boys and Girls, an album released by Bryan Ferry in 1985, is still one of my all time favorites. I remember my mom and me driving out to some nearby rural town to get a new backpack for school. I played this tape over and over again. She always let me pick the music. I was only 13 years old then.
I thought I was so grownup and that I knew so much. Goodness, I was barely more than a baby but I was old enough to wear this with earnest and excitement

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I had so many dreams then. I would spend hours working on them - daydreaming, writing in my diary (you know the one with the lock at the end of a paper hinge and little thin metal 'key' that opened it) and talking to my friends.

Many of these dreams turned into plans and plans turned into reality. This was something I was really good at - achieving my dreams. Some people call this the Law of Expectation. I like this law. Mostly, I like it because it says that you have some control over how your future will turn out. I'm willing to accept that there is an element of the future that is well beyond anyones control but I like thinking that I play a part in it all. 

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It starts with your imagination.

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It starts with rich, elaborate, detailed stories that you weave with yourself as the star. 

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You fill it out with some key people. 

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And then, once you accepted the work that needs to be done, you make it happen. 

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I didn't really understand that song lyric "too grown up to dream" back then. This morning as I corralled my two and a half year old with her three toothbrushes and tried to put some deodorant on under both arms, it made more sense. You need some time and space in order to access your imagination. What else did I have to do when I was 13 years old? Some homework and worry about my skin and if some boy liked me or not...these were of paramount importance to me then. My mom always warned me to not be too eager to grow up too soon.

I get it now. What a tangled web we can weave without even meaning to - it doesn't have to be sinister to ensnare you. It's like holding the end of the thread and watching as the spool falls to the ground, bounces a few times and rolls off to the other side of the room. A big spool of job thread, a little spool of retirement savings, many parenting spools, I forgot my friends birthday spool...Do this a thousand times and you're nearly there. The further into adulthood you travel, the more loose threads that are just out there.

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Spending all your time just trying to contain the various threads doesn't leave a lot of space to breathe or room to dream. That makes me sad because if my imagination is stagnant and I don't have anything I'm dreaming of then what will the future look like? 

My key players are here so I know it will be good. It's just the details I'm a bit fuzzy about. 

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I mean, I know some basic stuff like adding to our family, being the best mom I can be and keeping my marriage alive. All the other stuff about my career and the things I like to do ... well, I haven't thought about this stuff in a while. The question is: if you are living the old dreams that were worth keeping and you can't seem to access the new ones then where do you go from there?

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I'm lucky. I have a supportive husband for a partner and a beautiful daughter. We're on a good path as a family and part of being a family is being willing to do the driving while the other person keeps the wheels on the bus. We're doing all that we ever wanted to do, even if it doesn't look like it's going to fall within the confines of even the loose framework of my dreams. One of the reasons I married Tim is that he keeps me on my toes. The road ahead looks good.

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As for me, I keep saying that I'm going to get back to this dreaming thing and I will. It may be a few months from now until I can create some space to do that but it will happen. As soon as I have a little space to do it, I'll hop back in the drivers seat. Until then I'm just going to keep on the ride they're on. I trust them. I love them more than anything. It's going somewhere really great, I can feel it.  

1 Lovies:

Aunt Barb said...

She looks like her Great Aunt Barb in the picture of her on Daddy's shoulders climbing up the steps. You are really getting good at this picture taking!