Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Dream On! Dream On! Dream On!

Watched Glee on Hulu tonight, the episode about dreams. Doogie Howser guest stars and tells the Glee club that 91% of their dreams will not come true. That they will end up as middle management for insurance companies etc...
They are crestfallen for a few minutes and then vigilantly set about to prove him wrong.

I remember doing that.
At 17, as I graduated from high school, as the VP of the school I met with a famous news anchor, whom I will, I know, frustratingly enough, will not name here. Something tells me that is not cool...anyway this famous news anchor was the Godfather of one of my classmates and he came to my boarding school to speak for graduation. Before his speech he met some of the students. He commented on my white chiffon dress, which I made myself, a Karl Lagerfeld designer pattern, and I told him I made it. He asked me what I wanted to be and I said simply, " A fashion designer." He nodded and moved on.

In his speech...he spoke of dreams and hard work and accepting life. He literally said, "You may want to be a football star,famous fashion designer,or platinum record selling musician someday...and most likely that will not happen."

Something in my chest hardened and dropped. He went on to talk about how the power is in finding the happiness in what you do have. I know it was profound. But at the time I was furious.
How dare he poop on my dreams???
I WILL be a fashion designer. I WILL live my dreams.
I will NOT be one of those people who settle.

Later in fashion design school....the evil powers of negativity tried again. My freshman teacher, a highly respected Japanese woman in her early sixties informed us that out of 13 of us in the pattern making class, only one of us would still be a designer in 6 years. My classmate, who I has just met that day and had talked to during class, suddenly grabbed my arm and raised my arm, telling the class I would be The One. I was stunned. But I believed it. I would be the one.

Later still, my jaded, older boyfriend tried to convince me, as he had a Scotch after a long day at his pharmaceutical sales job, that
"Everybody settles."
I insisted, " NO. I will not settle!"

Six years later, I realized suddenly, I was still a fashion designer. Then I wondered what it meant. I did it. I proved them wrong. So what?

Then I realized I wasn't happy. I no longer cared what 16 year old girls wore in Japan. It was heavenly to get paid to shop there for a while. Loved it. Bliss! But after a while other things began to matter more.

Now, I see that dreams change. Or rather we choose them, daily. It doesn't mean anything either if we do not pursue the one we made up at 5 or 17. It really doesn't.
On the other hand we can have our dreams. We CAN. All that matters is if we have the gumption to say I WILL. Now. No matter what...whether they are hard, or take a long time, or are not likely. I will do what I said I would do. Because I say so.
It's that dedication, that journey, that shapes our lives.
I have new dreams now. They are entirely different and yet I would never have these dreams if I hadn't dreamed those dreams. The skills I learned from full filling those dreams are also the very same skills I am using for my new ones. It's all perfect.

I will, as the head of Glee and Doogie end up screaming in unison..."Dream on! Dream On! Dream On!"

What are your dreams?

Zen Honeycutt

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