As a child, I can remember my mother pursuing alifelong dream of becoming a school teacher. She got herself established after leaving my father and began working for a better future. She was so hopeful the day she started college. For four years, she studied hard and dedicated her time but during her last year of school,she was told that her visual handicap would limit her ability to teach in traditional schools. So this domestic violencesurvivorand single mother of two moved her family across the country to a city that had a school for children with visual handicaps. She set out to acquire a position and was determined to achieve her goals. Butmeetings with the school did not go as planned and eventually she was told that she was not blind enough to relate to those children and would not be a good fit. At the age of ten, I learned that every story does not have a happy ending. I learned that going through some adversity does not entitle you to a reward and that the agony of watching your dream die is a devastating blow. My mom did try to find another path to pursue, but ended up with a mediocre job instead. She found herself surrounded by responsibilities and scared to gamble with the welfare of her children. Because she was unable to pursue or even have another dream, she was never the same.
We all have experienced some type of disappointment in our lives and hopefully have acquired the coping mechanisms to deal what happens when we don’t get our way. We ask every child what they want to be when they grow up. We then help them nurture that dream and work toward it, but everyone does not get to be an astronaut or a doctor. Some of those kids will have to accept a different goal. That’s how life can be.We also know that these kids can still live productive, full, and happy lives if they choose to. We know that sometimes life picks the direction for you and that it might work out better, if you let it.
It is said that the one thing constant in this world is change. You can do nothing to stop it. Everything in our lives will eventually see some type of change and it will occur with or without our help. That means the best thing we can do is to choose which direction our lives move toward. This task is usually met with fear, but people almost always assume that any fear of change is associated with the fear of the unknown or the fear of failure. They think that either the situation will become worseor that they won’t have what it takes to achieve their goal. But what about the fear of heartbreak? What if I do everything I’m supposed to and it still gets taken away from me? This is a crippling state that would limit a person from even making a goal, so they might avoid the possibility of defeat. This is a state that kills the human spirit and leaves you trapped in a situation that you cannot control.
Those like me who have come through The Healing Place have been saved and we have a responsibility to help others be brave enough to continue having dreams. If we have any gratitude for the blessings in our lives, then we have an obligation to support the people around us and do what we can to build them up. When you see the fear of heartbreak in others, I would encourage you to love them through it. Help them to see that captivity for what it is and show them that their world can be different. We can serve as a moral compass and show others an example of a healthy lifestyle. But the real work is done when they can see us climbing. When we are brave enough to change our own lives, we have a chance to inspire that same courage in others. The truth is that all dreams appear to be unreachable, until you start working toward them. When people see us doing just that, their own dreams can become possible.
I want to challenge everyone to evaluate your day-to-day lives and askyourselves if you are working toward a dream. It doesn’t even have to be something big; the only thing that matters is that you are brave enough to make a choice about who you want to be in life and not just accept the way it is. This approach will lead you to a purpose and satisfaction that you might not have ever known. You can show others that this can be the difference between simply existing and living a good life.