In Pursuit of Dreams...

We are born naked, black, white or red or yellow- and with NO rights, just human beings who may be born into a royal family, but more likely to be born into abject poverty and doomed to starvation, abuse, disease, a miserable existence and early painful death. We truly have NO right to expect anything- all of our rights are taught to us- they are really only learned expectations (especially in our more developed country)!
Why should we be deserving of anything at all simply because we are alive and have deep desires, or want something really badly?  
A 'true' dream  is an inherent need, a seed implanted within us, or maybe it's genetic! But, that is not to say that we deserve to have it, or not to attain it.

To put it another way: How many boys in this country dream of being football/baseball/basketball legends, and no matter their skill or how desperate their yearning, how many actually attain it? Were these boys more deserving than all the rest? No, it's a matter of the luck of the draw, or the hand of God. (In which case we are never unworthy - or worthy enough.)
Of course we are told to have some expectations of good (it's written in the Bible), and that we have a certain place within humanity as 'special' if only to him because of who he is -only IF we acknowledge that and try to please him...
But he didn't actually promise a rose garden without trials (or that as a human, or a good person that we should expect to live out our dreams).
In my view, being a good person, or a gifted person, doesn't mean there is a reason to have the expectation or to feel deserving. It is out of desperation that we cry out unto God. After all, the hole in our heart HURTS us!
But if our luck is by the hand of God -I don't believe he would plant a seed within us and then allow it to lay fallow. (I believe he implants us with our dreams, just as he gives us our gifts - and they may be genetic or in our soul, I don't know.)

Most of us can attain happiness anywhere, because unhappiness is exactly equal to expectations unfulfilled- it’s a matter of letting go of those unrealistic expectations. But there are levels of happiness, too. Perhaps what I mean is really a state of contentment.If your dream is strong in you, then you can’t be completely happy lacking fulfillment of that dream, but you may find contentment.

"Do not part with your dreams or aspirations for when they are gone you will still exist, but you have ceased to live." - Henry David Thoreau

This is the mural I painted when we moved here and I realized that I would NOT immediately get to realize my dream of horse ownership. This was my attempt to satisfy the need- because somewhere along the way I learned not to take “no”. (it was over 3 years that I waited until we were ready and able...and the horse came along). 

But you may not yet know what dream or dreams you have within you. (Remember that phrase about the world being your oyster... you may have yet to open that shell to discover it!) 
 *See posts from October!

We are all so unique and on different time-tables of stages and circumstance. We blossom, we wither, we strive, we cocoon, we give up and give in, we fight and stand tall when we cannot take it anymore, and we are not always whole, because we are damaged, and we must RE-grow or find ourselves over time... and our dreams go along for this ride of life, either suppressed, or overbearing, or withered or growing and defining us as we follow the beat of our personal drum.
Perhaps your dream is simply to be loved and well-known, to have an intimate life-companion. But ask yourself this too- if you are truly happy where you are- if you will always wish to be near the ocean and wistfully yearn for the sand and the surf and the sun...  Are you truly happy without it? Do you feel complete, like you are where you belong? That too, is a dream.

So, you have dreams,  but they are of different types so maybe you don't recognize them as such. And of course they may have been driven off-course by overwork, or a house full of children... or some other  life-altering event.
One day you will wake up to the thought that it's time to search – to find yourself again and to discern what you still truly yearn for, for what completes you. It may take some work to discover, but then you can redirect your focus onto the next priority. For now, it may not yet be time for you to focus on your dreams. If you are still in the midst of some damage-control, and the mitigating circumstances you find yourself in now, it  may preclude your advancing into that realm of dreaming, of possibilities right now. It's a stage, and it's OK, just be patient. There is a time for everything.
[That is part of this hell hole of house-limbo because of our house hanging over our heads.  Who can feel free to dream at such a time? But, we can still research the possibilities-weigh the pros and cons of each direction - so when the time comes to move, we will have a direction and be sure of our path.]

As far as my own dreams and coming to conclusions about living with the purpose of chasing after “more realistic dreams”-  We are ready to downsize and yet to expand. I don’t know where we’ll end up, but I’m sure it will get snow. I can't really say that snow allures me... it's nice to look at but not when you have animals to tend to through 2 feet of snow, or places to go in a hurry (waiting for snowplows can be a problem). That's why I always say "I only like snow when it's in a picture on the wall" (or, the view out the window). But I know that we will succeed in this mission toward self-sustenance, whatever it takes. (Hubby mentions greenhouses a lot.....LOL)

I find life isn't worth living without the hope of attaining the dreams - they SUSTAIN me, the HOPE sustains me.
It's rather like a drug, something I NEED and yearn for involuntarily... especially those yearnings that I didn't put into place or create, but that are a part of who I am, what I am, what my life is ALL about , because on some level, dreams cannot be purged. They haunt you. You are paired up with them for life!!
(Of course I know it isn't completely true- because dreams can morph as we are affected by the changes we go thru in life- and most certainly there are more “worthwhile” things to strive for like ending hunger and other humanitarian type endeavors to put energy into than our own selfish visions... And I am not advocating a limiting or limited selfish/self-centered way of life or life-view, only that we work with what we have at any given time, and also that we go through stages and ages, and sometimes focusing on ourselves is all we’ve got. You’ve got to have something for yourself first in order to give of yourself....)

PS: I  believe that I will have a horse again, I just don't know if it will be Cheri, and I don't know when it will be or how hard it will be to accomplish. Sure, another summer wasted without riding, as I get older and my hips are stiffer, and my body hurts more, but i firmly believe that God's timing is always for a reason. Perhaps I am getting sicker with the fibromyalgia? In any case, no one rushes His answers, right? I waited a long time for Cheri, and I can do it again- I just won't be happy completely while I'm doing it.. And if I cry sometimes, then I cry. I’m no stranger to tears and I know that crying won't kill me. And, I know that God understands & hears me (after all HE knows me!) I let God carry it all!
 It's a thing between us...
And as much as I am tempted to get a definitive answer about the training progress of my horse right now, I'm sure that he'll let me know when he has a definitive answer, and I will try to wait!
I wish we had things to celebrate just now, but it looks like the tide is out on that. We will just have to wait for the tide to come in again, bringing with it all kinds of treasures hidden in the waves...
We just have to remember that the tide does come back in, and that it always brings us treasures (even if we have to dig for them, even if they are small).

 When it is quiet, where do you thoughts go? What keeps coming back to you?

What, if not a dream - if not that most bittersweet desperation, drives us?

Jazz pianist & composer, Herbie Hancock's new album, is called “The Imagine Project”.
Herbie’s goal with The Imagine Project was global music collaboration as an effort using music the the golden path to peace), and it isn’t at all the Jazz you’re used to!
I heard him on TV the other night (I wasn’t watching so I can only make guesses as to who was interviewing or the program), and I just loved what he was saying. At one point he made referrence to playing with his mentor, music artist Miles Davis.

His exact words: “...I remember I played a real wrong chord at the peak of a great evening when Miles was soloing. He played some notes that made my chord right. It blew my mind. He didn’t hear it as a wrong chord, he just heard it as something that had happened and he took the responsibility of making something out of it. And I try to do the same thing myself. Take whatever happens and try to make it work.


What I want to look at though, is that wonderful Title he used for his project– I admit, things like that inspire me to open up vistas that I might not have before - to rethink things.

Now, I know it could be said that I have weakness for this ‘dreaming’ that I do. Sometimes it might be true, but it’s how I arrive at my goals. 
We are human, we yield to temptation, our dreams can seduce us and we can lose ourselves in them, so of course sometimes we need to be broken (oh, like a slap upside the head) before we can clearly see the folly of a dream we have held onto. We have a hard time seeing through our own blindness. Everyone KNOWS "if it seems too good to be true, it probably is".

This has happened to me. It is a very hard eye-opening lesson. My wonderful horse, a wonderful gift, has gone back to his previous owner. A beautiful horse can still be as dangerous as a wild mustang (what horse can't?) 
After so many months not being challenged with new things to do and see, not being used, only petted and walked around, he got spooky and resistant, testing me with a few nips.
Now I didn't understand his need for security from what they call a 'leader' (as a rooster to a flock might be). 
Clearly he needed to be re-trained on what he’d learned years ago - and we never were quite sure how far any training had taken him before. "Greenbroke" can mean many things.
There I was, out of shape with major arthritis and a bone graft in my neck -things I can’t afford to be hitting the ground with - and all I could imagine was the wreck that could be coming. 
It all really came down to Me: almost a 50 year-old "Greenhorn", and Him: a 9 year old "Greenbroke" (broke to the saddle but not to ride per se). 

So sad for me... it's been almost 1/2 a year and I still hear his hoofs hitting the gravel when I'm walking, still hear his nicker... and I turn my head to see if he's there. And then I fight back the tears. I imagined all the times I would've climbed up onto his sturdy back and felt him beneath me. I imagined how it would feel to be on the road with him under saddle, his mane like a flag in the wind. And then the image would turn into him spooked by a car coming around the bend, or someones trash in the air, or a rabbit darting past... and me on the dirt. 
But I can’t stay there, I HAVE to keep moving forward, not looking back.

The biggest challenge of my life, (ok, maybe not as hard as taking care of twin infants), my intent was to learn as I went along, but in doing so, not understanding the basics of training or how to read the signals he was giving, I knew that there was danger in making things only worse for both of us. 
After months of hating myself, for finally losing my nerve in the efforts of re-training, I thought it best to ask his previous owner what HE thought was best to do. So now the answer to my 25 year-long Dream is out on pasture in Arizona. 
He might “come around” with work (of his previous owner), and he might not. 9 years for a horse, might be half of it’s life already- and sometimes it’s hard to change a mindset like that! 
Perhaps this dream has morphed into something less dramatic/climactic, but it has not fizzled really. I still hold onto hope of it’s fulfillment and completion. We can never know the end until the very end.

And last I heard, he was ready to be ridden outside the round pen! Of course this is by someone he's worked with for packing trips for years, a someone who knows horses well, too. 

So I am spending the summer getting myself ready, physically fit to ride, mentally ready to take over the leadership role in horse-ownership, just in case he does come home. It’s not something I’m willing to give up on if there is hope. It still feels like the biggest challenge of my life! (And if by chance another horse finds its home with me, one better broke to ride, safer, then I have still done the best thing in preparation.)

Maybe I'll just find a pony....
It starts with thoughts of complete failure- with imagining the folly of doing nothing at all to be ready. After all, God moved a mountain for me once, right? So my dream moves onward with a small grain of hope, because there is NEVER a big ripe succulent juicy Hope, is there? No, it’s always doubtful, uncertain and unlikely... but it’s all we ever get, and it has to be enough. 

You’ll know, if it spurs you on. And so you imagine that unlikely but wonderful successful outcome. It becomes YOUR “Imagine Project”.
In your mind, you work out the steps it will take to gain that final success, the things you need to do to get there- the goals. You make a list to prioritize them, the little things you have to deal with that are in your way. It might be as simple as ‘making time’ in your life for a new habit like saving money – a new routine (or sacrifice) necessarily added to each day, or taking a class/training course. It might be all of those things – and more!

What do you live for, work for, pine for, cry about, obsess over? What dream drives you? What is your Imagine Project?