Recognising a dream to be that thing that will not leave you alone, no matter how loudly busy your life may be, is just the first step on the road of inconvenience. It would have little opportunity to develop itself inside all that busyness…….just look at how busy I am……can’t you see? If anyone imagines that it would ever be possible for me to find the time, space and energy to walk out my dream (considering how foolish I feel even mentioning it out loud), that thing that lifts and excites, just the thought of it bringing on a smile, that thing that keeps me awake at night, then they are asking too much. It’s like wishing my whole life was a holiday, and, to my knowledge, there is no fairy with that amount of wand power. I have to go to work, put my all into it, rest completely assured that, without me, everything will degenerate into chaos. Besides, the family comes first, the kids, the partner, the outlaws, the job, the garden, the community commitments and I, little unimportant ‘I’ come somewhere down the bottom of all such lists. No, not true. I put myself there.
But what about the dream to make a difference? What about that journey only I can make? We are not born attached to someone else. We are one and only one and only ever one, however many attachments we make along the road. Often we think of ourselves in relation to A.N.Other and we put ourselves in their shadow, dragging all the longings of our soul along like ankle chains. It does demand energy, yes, but energy is always available and is surprisingly responsive to our call for action. It also demands time and effort, but what we don’t seem to realise at the beginning is that we only have to take one step, and then another until we learn, all over again, how to run.
I talk with people often about relationships and I find one thing to be a constant. If I make someone happy, bending into unbelievable shapes a thousand times a day for years, then this is enough. If this were true, which it absolutely is not, then how come it never is enough? Sometimes I can’t see where I start and you begin, so efficient have I become at pandering. Now, this is not to be confused with the giving of love which is always a free gift. However, if it comes at a price, these things I do for you, these accommodating things, denying myself, quieting my own desires, my own voice, then it is not love I give you, it is domestic maintenance and there is no blood in the veins of it. I can do the same inside my house, plumping up cushions, emptying the ashes, sweeping the floors, only to go through the whole process again tomorrow and throughout all my tomorrows.
It’s confusing I agree, but it is, nonetheless, a common misunderstanding among lovers. What we believe to be the good and the right things are often the wrong things. What it leads to, in the end, is often an explosion, because this dream thing, will never let us rest. So many of us go to our graves with the song still in us and yet it is always in our power to avoid that being said about us. What seems to happen is that we find ourselves in a situation that appears so established as to be impossible to change, let alone tear down and start again. This is the way we are expected to behave; this is the way we have always done it; we don’t know another way. The questions are endless. What will he/she/they think of me? Worse, what will they say? How can I change something I didn’t have much say in creating? I just went along for the sake of peace even if my restless heart felt none beyond the ‘ah’ that comes when we are congratulated for being a good girl. Well, that lasts about ten minutes which is not very long at all. If the well dones do not directly resonate with our soul, it means nothing. I never wanted to hear such well dones after achieving something that was merely something I taught myself to do very well indeed, unless, that is, it was something to do with my dream, in which case, bring them on!
The thing about building and walking out a dream is that we usually need support, because what we plan to embark upon is going to cause some degree of inconvenience. I might, for example not be here to take delivery of the new washing machine because the weather is perfect for catching cloud photos. I might not be here to have supper on the table at 7 because I am meeting a friend to talk through pigments or Nietzsche or the fabrics of India or constellations in the southern hemisphere. Yes, it is thoroughly selfish of me I know. No, I can’t re-schedule……well I actually could but I’m not going to because this is the time I want to do this thing. But, be careful whom you choose for this role. To have your dream micro-managed before you even learned about it yourself is to ensure failure, until, that is, you have quietly walked, with love, with kindness and understanding of the ‘inconvenience’ you are causing, all alone for a while. Why we always ask another’s opinion on our own wild imaginings is beyond me, even if I have done exactly that mysefl, and learned from it.
This is where we women find our biggest road block, and so few of us climb over it. We accommodate everyone else until we have no path at all other than the collective one. We make it okay, we make it easy for ourselves, saying, well, what could I achieve anyway, or, it’s too difficult and I can’t face the fight. In short, we give up. I am not surprised at all that men do great things and women support them because it is we who let that happen. Nor am I saying there is anything wrong in it, providing it works the other way around when a woman dreams a dream. The minute we commit to it, life will help us. It will be rocky, bumpy, challenging and inconvenient, and that’s before walking out the front door, but these dreams are gifts and we are powerful and intelligent and strong and utterly brilliant after all. Didn’t we prove that by raising children, learning how to balance books, caring for our loved ones, soothing, nursing, supporting, cheering on, always there……… always?
It all begins with saying yes. Yes, to me. Yes I will build my dream.
I’ll leave you with the wisdom of Nietzsche…….
“Any human being who does not wish to be part of the masses need only stop making things easy for himself. Let him follow his conscience, which calls out to him: “Be yourself! All that you are now doing, thinking, desiring, all that is not you.
Every young soul hears this call by day and by night and shudders with excitement at the premonition of that degree of happiness which eternities have prepared for those who will give thought to their true liberation. There is no way to help any soul attain this happiness, however, so long as it remains shackled with the chains of opinion and fear. And how hopeless and meaningless life can become without such a liberation! There is no drearier, sorrier creature in nature than the man who has evaded his own genius and who squints now towards the right, now towards the left, now backwards, now in any direction whatever.”