Growing up as a child, you get kisses and cuddles and familiar faces trying to put a smile on your face. A drop of tear from your eyes can also send everyone in the room on a mission; ‘to put the smile back.’
As soon as you learn the numbers and write your name or start nursery and can differentiate between who daddy and mummy is; no sooner had you memorised what to say when your parents ask questions like,
‘When you grow up, what would you like to be?’
As a hopeful Child, with an untainted spectacle of the future, actually maybe life; we answer with quotes like,
‘Mummy I want to fly the aeroplane’
‘I want to be a Doctor or I want to be an engineer.’
Unknown to us, we are already being nurtured and groomed to have focus in life when we respond with positive answers. Our Parents smile and put our dreams in a keep-safe box. Our ability to dream as children are so powerful that we paint our dreams in the brightest colours on a blank canvass you could think of- rigid primary colours especially as they were the only colours we knew. We repeat, to as many as have asked us our ambition in life, with delight and a dazzle in our eyes.
It’s a different when we get to College and our world is a little more exposed. Rather than ditch our dreams, we DEVELOP an open mind and go with whatever we find as an alternative to our dreams, whilst some still hang on to the childhood dream a little. We have introduced into our world, flexible secondary colours, whereby we can mix colours to make a new one (yellow+red= orange).
So what’s wrong with a little mix of lifestyle with dream? At this stage, the dazzle in our eyes have turned a shade darker especially as our teachers, families and mentors begin to tell us the difference between dream life and real life. Like my profound law lecturer in college, who seemed to have a legal bookshelf in his head and quoted all the legal cases off by heart. I was so flattered that I asked why he didn’t become a solicitor or a barrister and he laughed and answered ‘it’s the reality of life that I swapped for my dream.’ Whatever that meant, I didn’t bother to find out. I never understood as he would teach a wonderful lecture and inspire the entire class because of his high level of intelligence on how to defend a case and then at the end of the lecture he would end it with a phrase like ‘You might just not be a lawyer, because out there, is a fierce wind that will blow that idea out of your mind.’
However, it’s more disappointing when we graduate from University and find out that our decision wasn’t the best. A stage when most of us become indecisive about our career choice. And by now, we have settled for secondary colours- darker shades -because they hide our weaknesses and deficiency and other things we hate about ourselves.
A handful of people have chased their dream and achieved it, while a large number of people have settled for the jobs that pays the bills, one year, two years and have spent ten years doing the same job. They don’t want to make changes especially when all seems to be okay. As long as they pay bills, meet daily needs and go out occasionally. It’s easy to forget our childhood dream and fulfilment in life. I’ve met people working in a café as a sales assistant for more than 25 years and have introduced their children into the same path. You ask what is wrong with that. I ask can you do that job for 25 years. If you can, please stop reading because this is not for you, otherwise carry on.
Whenever I’m asked why I left a law career path to be a writer, I casually reply that ‘I’ve always wanted to be a prolific writer and speaker when I grow up,’ legal path has always been a back -up plan because I love debates and arguments, and I thought at least I still get to speak.
Dream chasers, are the ones who look for opportunity to make their childhood dream come true. Although these opportunities do not look like opportunities rather they come as challenges: loss of a job, end of a relationship, or worse case, death of a beloved one. Other times, they are just the excitement of moving into a new place, migrating or starting a new community.
I believe we build baked walls with our bare hands and barricade childhood dream for the sake of comfort or life experience. Whilst trying to settle for reality, let’s not forget that there’s a reason why you were here on earth.
For me; it is to make an impact and be an influence, and with that dream, I run with determination!