What are your dreams? Seriously. I’m asking. Not “what are the dreams that will sound safe and acceptable to my friends/spouse/family.” Not “what are the dreams that I dare to have without really putting myself out there because I’m afraid of failure.” Not “what the dreams that I can have within the confines of logical/rational/paths we’ve been told we must follow.” Not “what are the dreams I can have while still managing to clean the tub and the floors this weekend.” What. Are. YOUR. Dreams?
Here’s the thing. We rarely really offer up the full extent of our dreams up. We’re afraid someone will object, point out that we can’t do it/aren’t qualified, suggest a safer/more secure (financially) option. We’re afraid people will placate us and say “aww that’s nice” but when we want to go for it we’ll get, “OK, realistically…”. Maybe we’re afraid they’ll get thrown in our face. Held against us. “You’re so unrealistic….” and that kind of thing. (Been there? Yeah, me too.).
But you know what? That’s BS.
To step back and clarify for a moment, I absolutely get that because of illness or disability, there are certain things some of us can’t do. And this is not a “you can be anything you want to be” speech, because I get that in some cases, we just cannot. Or maybe it’s not medically safe for us to do so even if we can. My point is that often, we are afraid to speak our dreams because we think others will object, degrade or belittle them, or make us feel badly about them/incapable/etc.
Now obviously, there are certain things that regulations require we can and cannot do. I cannot perform surgery because I’m not a surgeon. If a job requires me to be 6’0, unless I’m allowed to do the job on stilts and am comfortable doing so, I’m never going to do it because I’m 5’0 on a good day. But regulations and legal requirements aside, I’m tired of people putting down our dreams. Yes, we have to feed our families and pay our mortgage/rent/bills. Yes, there are tasks that need to be done like getting groceries and cleaning the house. But there can be some sort of happy medium between your wildest dreams and feeling like you don’t fit in your life because you feel so stifled into logic and tasks that you are put down for dreaming.
So here are my dreams, in no particular order:
- Grow Spread Hope Foundation into a viable organization that I can run and grow into my life’s work. I have a lot of love and empathy to give, I have a lot to offer others, and a passion for doing so. I’m particularly passionate about helping support other advocates, and this is becoming an increasingly significant part of SHP.
- Incorporate my travel experience, knowledge, business into that. (The how is TBD, but hey, these are dreams).
- To not feel alone in doing all this, but to have a “partner in crime” (not real crime guys, don’t worry), or teams to do this with. Because I don’t think this can be done alone, nor should it have to be.
- To have farm land and gardens and goats and a Scottish highland cow. And to be able to cook meals from those gardens (not the goats! The plants!) and to be significantly more sustainable.
- To have a family and to celebrate large family holidays and gatherings together, all sides of the family. I want to have gifts under the tree and play games together and have our own traditions that we as our own little family start and share with all who celebrate with us.
- To adopt a lot of dogs. Shelter dogs of course. To rescue them and have them live long happy lives. And of course be part of our family. (This is long term, since current pup must be the queen bee of dogs).
- To publish a book. Hopefully my novel (more on this coming up!).
- To be completely loved and supported and accepted for being me. Not me with improvements and changes and this and that. Me. Who I am. It’s not that I won’t grow and learn and change a bit. But I don’t want to ever have to in order to be enough. We all deserve love for who we are, not who people want us to be.
So what are your dreams?