I’ll admit I didn’t want to post anything about Independence Day. I didn’t think I could write anything that would have any sticking power as all you fantastic spatulans run off to cookouts and Fourth of July fire works (or as the more thoughtful of you spatulans run off to meditate on justice for all or spend time honoring the men and women fighting for freedom). I wanted to write about doing dreams.
But, the more I wrote, the more I realized doing dreams was a freeing of ones self. Doing dreams is sloughing off your own doubts and can’t-do’s and "being brave on the rocks" (as Sabrina Ward Harrison would say). I realized doing dreams is like a personal independence day. So, happy Fourth of July!
What is "doing dreams"? It's not a sex dream. Get your mind out of the gutter. Doing dreams is accomplishing something you have always wanted to since... whenever. It’s kicking your butt into gear and allowing yourself to soar. Even if the end result is not entirely how you had pictured, it’s realizing, accepting, and then doing another dream. But you have to do before you know.
Doing dreams is saying, “Of course I can run a 5K (3.106 miles). I’ll start training today.” My neighbor said that. After training herself for six weeks, on Thursday she ran three miles straight and is close to reaching her dream of running the Twin Bridges race in Beaufort, N.C. (Runners start in one town, cross over two one-mile-long bridges, and end in another town). She is the mother of two and when I asked her to tell me about her running for an article I was writing on healthy lifestyles she said, “I’m hardly the picture of health.” That just goes to show that you can do dreams even if you think you can’t.
Doing dreams is setting out to finishing a problem, story, painting, or mixed music tape for your friend. Then it's sitting back with post-doing glow on your face and saying, “Hey, I did that. I dreamed. I accomplished.” Veni, vidi, vici.
Doing dreams is not selfish. I believe many people (even us fantastic spatulans) don’t do enough dreams. It’s scary. Maybe we will fail or worse – maybe we will succeed. Doing dreams is frightening, crazy, and glorious.
I know. I’ve been struggling with my own dreams for a long time. Finally, I am doing them. I am moving to Missoula, Montana. One of my dreams has always been to drive there.
It was a tough dream to actually start doing. There were many pros and cons. I’d have to quit my job at the newspaper, which I love. I’d have to get out from under the wings of my editor, whom I love. I’d have to leave my family, my friends, and start something new. I’d have to leave a rut I’d dug for myself. I’d have to be brave, I'd have to be all of me - and that was scary as hell.
A good friend of mine sent me this message while I was struggling with this rather big decision:
One of the things that I often see hold people back is that they are not prepared for success and often fear it. Especially in the profession of creative arts. Yet, if “purpose” is realized, it undergirds every river rift that life gives us, gives satisfaction and peace in the process and allows us to go along for the ride.
(P.S. "Undergirds." Good word. Look it up)
Wise words. They helped me remember that I am a "doing dreamer." My last day at work is July 30. There are many more steps before I accomplish this dream, but right now I am not thinking-about-getting-ready-to-commence doing dreams. I am actually doing. And it is so luscious.
I’m not suggesting you quit your job or move 2,600 miles away. I am suggesting that you do some doing dreaming. Whatever it is, whatever the end result, I hope you remember you are a doing dreamer – and go celebrate a little personal independence day.