Thursday, August 26, 2010

All I have to do is dream.....

Do you still dream?? I am not talking about the disjointed thoughts and wanderings from the last few days nor the nightmares that wake you up in a sweat. I am talking about the thoughts and want and hope for your future.

When I was a little girl because my parents were never home and our family life was polar opposite of Beaver Cleaver I would dream of marrying someone who worked nine to five and was available to be with his family on weekends. This dream was fulfilled for many years when Fred worked as a sales engineer. Our girls had their dad every night at the dinner table for discussions and attention.

Another dream was I wanted to be there for my children. Blessed again I was a stay at home mom the first ten years of marriage. When I did work it was nights while the girls slept and their daddy babysat.

Later, my dream was to get a teaching degree. This too came true and my career gave me the opportunity to be there for Annie & Jaime. Summers were gifts and many treasured memories were made as we had many adventures traveling. I often packed up the car the day after school let out.

Recently, I was in a rut mentally and it came to me that I had stopped dreaming. I had just given up because of time constraints, finances and life changes. This doldrums dynamics can throw you in a funk and magnifies the whole situation. When I made this realization, I stopped short and decided to do a U-turn and start dreaming again.

Posting pictures on my refrigerator of material things helped me set goals to actually purchase a few things for our home. I started to say when we go on our vacation or next year when we do this or that. I am buying lottery tickets again and then taking a few minutes to think of what I will do when I win. I close my eyes and visualize my grand-kids running in the airport to greet me. I picture Fred and me walking through the streets of Rome or sitting watching our grand-children play sports or in band concerts and dance recitals.

Dreaming is free. It costs nothing and it can be the tonic you need to get back on track. Write down five dreams and put them on your fridge then go buy a lottery ticket.

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Baptism by Fire

A baptism of fire was a soldier's first experience of shooting. Any unpleasant experience undergone, usually where it is also a learning experience; is a baptism of fire.

When I think of this idiom it reminds me of the time I bought Annie a new car. I was so proud that I went through the whole process at the car dealer’s by myself and bought the car. I forgot that I did not know how to drive a stick shift to get it home. It was a deal in my book because it cost $1200 less than the automatic. I told the dealer I will buy it today but you have to get me home with the car. So they loaded it on a flatbed tractor-trailer and off we went. When we arrived they blasted the horn and Annie came out to see her new car. When I explained why I could not drive it home, she realized that if she wanted to drive her car she would have to learn how to drive a stick. She did just that.

Parenthood is a perfect example of baptism of fire. Back in the day, we just learned by our mistakes. We muddled our way through pregnancy, breast-feeding, weight gain, discipline, and co-op nursery schools. Who knew what we did had a dates??? We just got together with other moms for our sanity and it worked. I would not trade some of my memories or early friendships for anything. We clipped coupons, shared books, tips, joys and sorrow. Now they call them book clubs or coffee klatches. We parented by fire. Did we make mistakes, you betcha? That is why we have to put our two cents in regarding our grand children. We mean well but just don’t want our children to do some of the same stupid things we tried.

There are many times in our life when we have new experiences it is just this, a baptism of fire. My very first teaching job was as an interim substitute for a very popular teacher who was going to be out on maternity leave. The day I started just happened to be the field day event where the classes compete against each other in relays and races. I went in dressed in sweats, headband and two cheerleading pom-poms to meet my new class. It was truly a learning experience. We won the entire event and that set the pace for a perfect transition for that fifth grade class.

Each time we had major moves for Fred’s job changes we were thrown into an entirely new and different experience and we have survived it all.

What is the point? It is really very simple God knows what He is doing. We can do anything if we just trust in Him. After all isn’t His first and very important sacrament called Baptism?