My dream is my baby. Since the day it was born I have loved it like no other, and put my dream’s needs before my own. Having it is the best thing I have ever done.
It changed my life.
But not only mine. In many ways it has also changed the lives of those closest to me.
They say it takes a village to raise a child. Well, the same could be said about dreams. Raising a dream is hard; you have to love it, nurture it, give it all your attention and put your dream’s needs first in order for it to grow.
And as your dream develops, and you shift your life to accommodate this, the responsibility spreads out and begins to touch the lives of those closest to you.
My friends and family have been incredibly supportive of my travel dreams. They listen intently as I regale them with stories of where I am going to go and what I am going to do, and allow me to express my excitement to them, even though they may not share it.
They don’t mock my exuberance or diminish my dreams; they allow them to blossom.
Though I know they are worried for me, and aren’t exactly thrilled about the prospect of not seeing me for months or even years at a time, they keep those thoughts to themselves (for the most part!) and instead, ooh and ahh over my new backpack, read my blog posts, partake in all my social media outlets and let me know they have my back in every way possible. They’re all in. I feel like I’m a Jewish bride, being held aloft on my chair whilst those I love most dance and sing around me, celebrating the start of my new life.
There have been countless moments over the past few years when, though they have not been aware of it, these people have helped shape and guide my dream. It bears the marks of their influence just as much as I do.
My dream is them and they are my dream.
I am not running away or hiding. I am steadfast in pursuit of something I believe in, and they are the small army I march forth with.
If I were writing this blog five years ago, you would have found yourself on a very different website. In fact, it probably wouldn’t exist at all (how much can a person write about shopping, celebrity gossip and sleeping an average of 14 hours a day?).
Last night one of my favourite people in the whole world (hi Phil!) told me she was really proud of how far I have come since then. It felt wonderful to hear those words, but even more wonderful to be able to believe she actually meant it. I can believe her so readily because I am also proud of me.
I have never felt that way about myself before.
We laughed as we compared the person I used to be with who I am now. It has been the most incredible journey, one that I have loved every moment of, and continue to revel in.
But it is a journey I have not taken alone. I had plenty of company along the way, and am forever grateful to those who walked the path beside me.
There is a line I love in a song by Joshua Radin that goes: “I sat beside you and became myself.”
That’s how I feel about all these people. They allowed me to sit with them and talk and dream and grow.
Without them I would still have a dream, and I would still make it come true, but it wouldn’t be half as wonderful a process if they weren’t here to share it with, and my story would undoubtedly have a very different ending.
Being a dreamer is a wonderful and rewarding experience. Having a dream is a gift.
Having people in your life who love and support you is priceless.
PS – Thanks guys