I think it’s easy, when you’re forced to step away from ‘normal’ everyday life, to slide into a world without dreams. It’s easy to get swept along on a tide of things that just ‘have to happen’ instead of thinking proactively about the future and owning that destination, wherever it might be. In some cases, like my own, the professionals even suggest it; stop planning, don’t look forward, just take each day as it comes.
But is that advice really helpful? Does it offer hope or encouragement? Is it healthy to be confined, physically and mentally, in an insalubrious cul-de-sac at the Earth end of the space-time continuum?
To me at least this seems a very unnatural way to live. If I’d always lived rooted to the here and now I’d have had found myself saddled with situations I know I couldn’t have endured for ten minutes, let alone forever. Whenever I reach a point where everyday is broadly similar – get up, eat, commute, work (the same work day in day out), go home, eat, sleep, start all over again – my soul cries out for a change, for something to break-up the mindless monotony of a life on cruise control. Call me weird but I just don’t see much fun constantly cruising at 80 kph on a poker-straight road to nowhere. The drive to dust.
So maybe that’s it. Maybe I’m not suited to a life on cruise control gently motoring along life’s highways with no crashes, detours or speed traps to throw me off course. For me, twisting mountain paths, crazy dirt tracks, being lost then found again in sweeping fields of golden corn holds so much more appeal! I’m sure in part this stems from the innate curiosity that’s surged through me all my life. A thirst for knowledge, awareness and self-development that’s driven me to be extremely demanding of myself (and sometimes others) on numerous occasions over many years. But I think there’s more to it than unbridled curiosity. A planet-sized nosey streak isn’t the only culprit.
From a very early age I had dreams, lots and lots of dreams. Some were small, simple, silly. Others were intricate, interwoven and held together by the flimsiest filaments of imaginary gossamer. Other still were nightmares, horrors lurking in the recesses waiting to cut my heart out or bury me alive. I’ve always dreamt vividly, actively and passionately and even now, I’d rather risk dreaming a nightmare than dreaming of nothing at all.
Because what are we if we live without dreams?