My daughter dreams of dancing. Every September I break out the check book and write a large check to her ballet school. Belief in her dream. Support of her passion and her desire. Investment in… her. I never think of it is money not well spent. Sometimes I think I could just sign my pay over to ballet as, it seems like I am writing another check every few months – which I am… but al for a great cause. My daughter.
Today I caught myself speculating on the cost of my own dreams and ambitions; the investments that I have made in myself. The checks written every month to pay back a loan used to invest in a dream that I chose not to pursue – a dream that required a single person or a married parent with a supportive spouse. (or a very weirdly houred Daycare)
I have never thought about dreams and education in financial terms. I have never stopped to consider the money spent or the return on the investment.
Graduate school cost. At that time it was an investment in my future. I knew where I was going, the salary I could expect, and the taste of success. I dreamed in living and breathing, with texture and sound, color!
Then I found out I was pregnant.
Then I took a job in another state because I knew I was on my own with little hope of interaction from the man involved.
I chose to be a parent. To be the best mom and dad I could possibly be to an amazing kid.
“I wish we had a backyard.” That amazing little kid told me as we walked to school this morning.
There are lots of things I wish… I wish we could take vacations without my parents. I wish that I had a job I loved. I wish I could tell her that dreams do come true just as we dream them with all the bells and the whistles and the textures and the smells. I wish I could tell her that love is all that and so much more.
“I wish we did too sweetie,” is all I could say. There are days when I would love to have the house with the yard so that we could garden and play. Right now, I wish I lived somewhere else – somewhere where we could have all that and more.
And I wish that I could tell her that dreams come true. That all the money invested has the expected returns.
But it doesn’t.
I dreamed of travel and a wonderful career and making a difference in the world – not just the country, but the world at large. I dreamed that by the age of 40 I would have a PHD and would be teaching others on analysis and compassion and angles and thinking outside the box.
Rather, my years and hard work and investment in graduate school resulted in a change of dreams; a dear friend who now lives in Texas and has been wonderful of late; a lot of out of date knowledge and professional frustration; and… a wonderful daughter who reminds me that miracles happen, love is all that and more, and sometimes dreams come true – they just don’t look the way that we anticipated.