― Bangambiki Habyarimana, The Great Pearl of Wisdom.
Today, a newrecord was quietly accomplishedin a corner of the globe rarely heard of. Three once unrelated strangers gathered in friendship, and oneamazingpersonal journey was thrusted ever forward to the “finish line.” While the rest of the world hummed along minding its own business, I was excitedly(and happily) checkingone more daydream off my to do list.Just like most personal goals it was of little importance to everyone else, except in this particular case Iwas accompanied by others that understoodthe importance of such a day. Many of us are skilled at rationalizing our way out of doing something. When in truth, we need to be rationalizing our way intomore things! There is no reason you cannot accomplish what you dream of. As they say, where there’s a will there is a way.By working through seemingly insurmountable circumstances with gritted teeth and a rock solid resolve, I have found that to be absolutely true. You see, what we aren’t told enough growing up is that we can do anything.Be weary of those who tell youany different. Ultimately, the people that believe in you as much as you believe in yourself, will walk right alongside you during the race.
above: My two pillars of support during the race Early on(when I was injured) there were questions of my ability to walk well again if at all, and much less trek a mile! However, with tremendous support and blessings I’ve done just that twice now. Both times were events that originally had been dreamed up in my mind.
above girl in tutu:Tropicolor, color run. the happiest 5k on the planet!
EvenifI completed each goal slowly, the point was to complete it at all and soak up the fact that dreams do(and can) come true. Especially when you put your best foot forward and your mind to it. Therefore, be careful of what you tell yourself and who you listen to. Because, whatever words are spoken get eaten up by our heart. Certainly, your heart deserves only the best things that life has to offer, so don’t let it consume words thatwill harm it!Find windto carry you where there is none, and fly high even when others want you to stay low.
“True love is like ghosts, which everyone talks about and few have seen.”
-Francois de La Rochefoucauld.
Is my life better since I almost died? I don’t think so, or at least I didn’t see the value or purpose of the last three years. I believed that I would’ve been enjoying life more (and having successes, and had plans) had the ordeal not occurred. How true it is that life happens while your making other plans. However, there is still gold to be found amongst utterly horrible unenviable circumstances. When life attempts to knock you out, you have to come back at it with fists flying. Even though you may be weary, there is still strength to be found in the indomitable human spirit. Even professional fighters with bashed in faces can still see. I’ve come to find that material belongings have no real value in the big picture. Money itself is just paper. It is not material goods, not gossip, social status, some daft guy, nor pridefulness. Instead it is the people and relationships that come to your aid. Nothing brings about true gems like a death defying situation, or dire need. It is those people who remain in your corner of the ring, that are priceless. How they shine in the noon day sun of love to be seen from miles around. It is those that stay in your corner, the friends, and vehement supporters that deserve your recognition and time. Therefore, don’t wait until you nearly die to see them for what they are.
“It does not do to dwell on dreams and forget to live.” ― J.K.Rowling.
It wasn’t all that long ago(or so it seems) that Ihad a daydream, which like most daydreams seemed unlikely to happen.While I wobbled alongin a rehab building on an indoor track, relearninghow to walk my mind wandered to a less dismal place. For motivation, I would imagine myself walking across the Brooklyn Bridge(my favorite) towardsamore joyfuland better place than my current reality. At the time walking at all was a feat, much less completing over a mile walk across an iconic bridge that was over 600 miles away from where I was. Just likehope can pull you out of a dark place; having a daydream can pull you forward towards your goal. It’s so important that you be around and supported by people who don’t find your daydreams to be preposterous. When you share your vision, it’s wonderful to be met witha vote of confidence, offers of help, or even those who treat it as a perfectly normal statement. Your dreams will have a harder time ofbeing borninto reality, if they’re planted in harsh soil. Therefore, share them with those that will encourage and help them to grow. Once I built up the endurance to walk a long distance, I then needed the funds to make the trip. Through an online fundraiser and with the help of a number of friends
and family, Iwas able toraise enough moneyto take the trip to Brooklyn. Not to mention ride Jane’s Carousel!
The supportnotonly financially, but emotionally helped bring a baby daydream to its full term reality. Withoutthe backing fromthe numerous people that believed in me, my daydream would’ve withered away.On my own I could not have reached my goal. This is proof positiveof how important it is to plant your dreams in fertile soil. The seeds born from your imagination, do best in supportive soil. Therefore,keep them safe from the thorny grounds of disbelief,negativity, worry anddoubt. Iam very fortunate to have had so much support. It is because of that, I can now tell youI walked all 1.1 miles of the Brooklyn Bridge with those very same supporters. Of course I had to leavea memento, so I made my own love lock(see here) for the occasion. Nothing is impossible my dears.
I wish the question “What do they sell at Walmart,”was uttered by more people other than just Paris Hilton on an old reality show(the simple life) unfortunately all too often big business is killing the little guys. As a friend of mine described herself “part punk rock and part hippie.” I too possess this dichotomy. Besides quirky coffee shops and d.i.y markets like the Rustbelt Market (See here!) I also lovethe handcrafted movement.More recently I’ve found this little gem in Grand Rapids Michigan.They not only have artist residencies, a gallery, and loads of handcrafted goods but they’re online too! (Shop!?)
As individuals we should have goods as individual as we are.Were not cookie cutter beings. Not only does shopping small enrich our landscape and support local businesses but also helps the economy here and abroad(fair trade coffee anyone?) Those quaint little neighborhoods don’t have to be a thing of the past.