Dreams can be wonderful and amazing things and I confess that I have been an avid dreamer for all my life. I have often lived in the alternative reality that my dreams provide and this has been even more so since my health battle took me over a decade ago.
Dreams and goals are incredibly personal and intimate things and seem to play varying roles in some people’s lives ranging from mere whimsy and entertainment to highly focusing and motivating. I have evolved into the latter.
I didn’t think I would become this person I am today, due of all that has happened to me over the past decade, but I have become more desperate to make my goals and ideas come to life. Why? That’s the question I have been asking myself more and more lately.
Having plans and goals can become obsessions to people if they find themselves needing change or something to focus their efforts and imagination on; and especially if the current realities are particularly difficult or mundane.
Whilst most people may dream of taking a holiday, finding a soulmate or of career advancement, I find myself ‘locking on’ to ideas and goals in order to pull through some of the worst emotional, physical and mental times and to find hope and respite in them.
Today my goals and plans for the future are like a beacon to see my way through my day to day struggles. So vividly can I see my goals that I can ‘feel’ them, ‘taste’ them and ‘breathe’ them. I will then start planning my steps toward them and I don’t give up until I absolutely have to or they become impossible to reach; even then I can tend to hold on.
The ‘gift’ of dreaming and planning can be a very a difficult one to bear for those of us who have physical and medical challenges. They are infinitely more harder to reach and seemingly more heartbreaking when they can’t happen.
My dreams are such a big part of me and so intimate and personal that I don’t share them with just anybody and there may only be one or two people who will ever know what I am putting my heart and soul into. I will zealously guard them and work hard towards them under the most painful of circumstances and physical pain.
The past decade has been a long series of trials and errors with my goals to see what I can do and what I can make happen. Many obstacles are placed in the lives of the disabled, chronically ill and health challenged that it can be heartbreaking and lead to desperate many times, it is something the able bodied constantly take for granted.
Things that are seemingly easy for the average person can be Herculean to us. When your body constantly throws you into a state of pain, frustration and torment even the simplest of goals like gardening, shopping and even walking can be a huge physical challenge!
My plans to travel or study have constantly been cancelled by flares of pain or increased disability. There have been so many times that even the plan of going for a drive seems completely out of reach.
Over the years I have recognised that my type of personality does not take these shortcomings and set backs very well. I will become very frustrated, more determined and at time’s even angry at myself when I can’t do the things I have set myself. Failing to reach some goals has caused me indescribable boughts of anguish and torment. I wish it didn’t and I try to process and work throughly things better but I am far from accomplished at this but I Am trying.
As a former project manager I am a constant planner and designer of ideas and goals and I approach my dreams as I did the projects in my professional life. I will construct the steps towards them and assign timelines and resources towards completing them. I will also push myself to advance these steps and devise alternate solutions in order to finalise them.
Those people who have been supportive and instrumental in helping me achieve my goals have been incredibly important to me and I treat their assistance with a life long gratitude and devotion that they may never truly understand. It is with this in mind that I first realized my feelings for my now husband when he began taking on my dreams and lending his help to getting them.
Conversely, for those who have endeavored to stop or block my dreams and plans for future happiness I have very little patience, tolerance or time for them.
This topic presents a particular difficulty for me as I have always strived to be a relaxed, zen like personality who tries to weather the storms of life in a resilient, even humorous and accepting way, but this becomes very difficult (and at times impossible) when it comes to the subject of my dreams and hopes.
Dreams and hopes are the fuel to my machine now. They are the stuff that drags me out of any reactive depression i might have to my circumstances and they are the fire in my soul that gets me out of my sick bed. I owe my life to them and my future to the pursuit of them.
I have also surprised myself with my level of ingenuity to get things done when faced with health challenges and circumstances. In order to overcome various roadblocks I have had to reach deep into my mind to discover solutions and work arounds. No small feet when you are unable to move or see and incredibly weak!
For those of us who have battled through our health challenges to do even the smallest thing we have hoped to do or have striven for, the rest of the world will never comprehend or recognise what it takes. They can even undermine the enormous strength and effort needed. It is for these reasons that I have always kept my dreams and plans to myself and kept chipping away at them.
Building dreams for those of us with health issues and physical barriers is so hard and, at times, heartbreaking. Harder than many people will ever realise. But without these things in my life I am certain I would not be alive to write these words or to encourage others to never give up on theirs.