Thursday, September 2

When do dreams shrink??

I remember being that little girl who wanted everything in the world. I wanted to fly around the world, land on the moon, and hold the worlds biggest rock concert with me front and center. When I got a little bit older I wanted to be a doctor - then the complete opposite: a mortician. A little more recently, I was gong to be a huge record producer and have my own studio in an exotic and exciting city and make millions.

My dreams always outstretched my little arms and had so much more in them than I even realized was capable in my world. Why? Because when I was a little girl, my heart didn't know rejection, I didn't know it even existed that the princess didn't end up with prince charming and live happily ever after. Disney did a good job teaching me about fairtytales, and real life didn't seem so cruel.

Of course it happens that as we grow up, our dreams need to come a little more in check with reality. Not every basketball player ends up in the NBA, not every girl with a microphone will become the next Madonna, and not every kid will walk on the moon...but do dreams have to just disappear? When I was in Ft. Collins, I went to a workshop about dreams. I thought it was about the things we see when we fall asleep, so I was very excited - but really it was about things we wanted to accomplish in our lives. In that class we all shouted out things that would be on our bucket list if we had one. Later, of course, my thoughts were turning & I created a bucket list of my own.

There is a big difference between goals and dreams. For example, my goal is to save enough money in the next few months to move back to Greeley to live again...but one of my dreams would be to stand on the stage at Journey church and worship with those amazing people like I should have done months ago. A few things on my bucket list include:

  • Record a demo - whether it goes anywhere or not I want my own CD
  • Go to Mexico and see the Aztec ruins
  • Learn to ride a motorcycle and travel the highways for a while
  • Perform my music on a huge stage in LA or NYC
That's just 4 and I had plenty of time during my stay to make a very long list...but I have it hidden right now. As soon as I got home it went right into a box marked "Ryan Owen Barber -- Always in my heart." At the time, my dreams were still his...he wanted to see me do those things, he wanted to travel with me, hit the open road with me...and by dreaming, my heart hurt so much at the ache of never achieving those things with him by my side. I gave up my dreams, and wanted nothing more than to just wake up one day and switch from this broken girl who felt so helpless, back to the girl who dressed up in mom's big shoes and twirled around without a care in the world and enormous dreams in my plan. When I was 6 years old, I wouldn't have listened to the world when they said "No honey, you should think more practical about life and maybe settle with something easier."

Well, my dreams are growing again. I'm about to hit the wonderful age of 20 and I want more out of life than what I'm aiming for right now. I want to leave my mark on the world in a beautiful way by helping people. One dream I now have that I believe would be very attainable is to set up a scholarship program for survivors of suicide. The state of Colorado claimed to offer so much assistance for me being a victim, but didn't really come through on anything and I want to change that, at least in the area of education. I want to set up a program to select scholarship recipients to receive $5,000 for school so that they don't have to say goodbye to those dreams they have because a loved one chose to take their life. Colorado just doesn't have much focus on the people left behind in such terrible cases, and I want to be the one to open their eyes to what we go through when someone we love makes the choice.

Also, I am going to dig out my bucket list, add to it, and get to living!! I'm young - now is the best time to hit the extremes of life because my body heals faster now :) Just kidding, but I really do want to stop living my life as if I have a tomorrow - and live each day like it were my last. After all, were we really thinking about tomorrow when we climbed the fridge to try and fly?? No - we were thinking about that moment and that dream, how great it would be to fly! (Yes, that was my sister's moment -- not mine, but find your own metaphor from your childhood).

Stop letting your dreams shrink!! There is never an age in which you HAVE to let go of them, and there is never an age in which it isn't okay to go back to them. They're still there, just waiting for you to visit again.

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