But yesterday that all felt impossible, unrealistic, and selfish in the worst sense of the word. Who sheds 40+ pounds at my age? Who gets to have good work, that both feeds and expresses their soul? How on earth do I juggle a better job with Little N's school schedule? I should have started a long time ago. I should have had a plan, back in my twenties. It's too late for me. I should make peace with where I am. No one really gets to have these things. Life is too hard and not that good. Scramble, scratch, and save. Be content with less. Savor the simple pleasures within the box of hardship that contains you.
My first dream was to be a writer. I remember being 6 years old and drafting my first book in first grader's penmanship. It was about a little lost cat - largely plagiarized from a book I'd read - complete with my own illustrations drawn from tracing a ceramic cat someone had given me as a present. I bound my little pages of text with staples down the lefthand side. I felt like a writer.
My next big dream came at about 11 or 12 years old. I was troubled by a disconnect I perceived at church. We all got dressed up for Sunday service, we looked good for each other and made nice, but what about the rest of the week? It felt somehow empty or at least inconsistent. I imagined a church that I would host where people would feel God's own presence. They would go back to their Monday morning lives still connected to that presence. It would change their lives and, in turn, they would change the world. The rich people would share. The struggling would be comforted and their needs would be met. We would all know God, closely, intimately, really. God would be among us.
But what about those big dreams of past decades? Maybe my little, squished up, totally do-able dreams could grow into one of them? Maybe all these pieces of chopped up dreams, my education, experience, and even job skills can add up to some version of a dream? (Refuge House could be a place for Spiritual Direction, retreats, and writing...)
But do people like me, with limited resources and everyday responsibilities, get to have big dreams come true?