|Dream / C. Calhoun 2012
I created this fractal as a representation of following your dreams.
Back in June, I closed my office door, said some good-byes and handed in my keys. I had been teaching at my school for five years.
I was going to another teaching job in the fall, part-time, but it wasn’t 100% certain that I had the job.
I still left the old one.
For so many reasons:
I needed to be creative.
I knew I had a decade or less of “teaching” in me – I knew that I would give it everything I had. Like a flame that had waxed and then waned, I knew I had to rekindle it in a different venue.
I was already writing for HubPages, and had the prospect of a part-time teaching job.
We had already reduced our expenses.
I knew that what I was making as a writer wouldn’t be enough to cover the bills.
I had some savings, but…
I took a leap of faith.
There were so many reasons to stay.
For goodness sakes, I had relative job security.
I had a steady job with steady income, though let me tell you, it wasn’t much.
I had a few bills to pay, though not many.
I needed to eat.
I needed a place to live and I wanted to keep my house.
|Still Dreaming / C. Calhoun 2012.
Do you have what it takes to follow your dreams?
I stood, that last day, as I turned out the lights. I peered into my tiny office-that-was-a-closet – a dark hole, not unlike one that I felt I was walking into. I didn’t know where that hole would lead. I didn’t know what the darkness would bring.
I’m not a coward, but I wouldn’t call myself the mark of courage, either.
I just knew that I had to follow my bliss.
I knew that I had to be true to myself. Maybe it was having someone die in my arms when I was 15. Maybe it was witnessing my dad having a heart attack, needing quintuple bypass surgery and later contracting prostate cancer. Maybe it was my brother dying in a car accident last year…and leaving a mess behind. Maybe it was the miscarriage I had last year and my cat dying the same day.
I don’t know.
I just know that you never know. You never know when it’s your time. You never know when you will say good-bye – or not – for the last time. You never know when you will pass to the other side.
So, I quit my job. To follow a dream of being a successful writer, artist and photographer. The community college job didn’t work out, either.
|Self-Portrait: Thinking / C. Calhoun
I have a dream.
I have NO IDEA where I will go or where this dream will lead.
I have NO IDEA if this is some drummed-up pipedream.
But I do know this: I will have tried. Each day, I try. I write. I take photos. I do arts and crafts.
I am following my bliss.
I’ve had a few friends say – in a loving way – that they’re jealous of what I’m doing. They were smiling when they said it, and I know that they weren’t lying.
I can say that following your dreams is not easy. If it was, I’d see everyone living out their dreams.
Society expects you to follow the rules. Good, upright, educated people just don’t walk out on their jobs. Good, intelligent people stick things out.
But I wanted to try this.
I will not, I repeat, I will not look back on my life and wish that I had endeavored to follow my dreams. I AM my dream and I have to protect it.
Thus, I’m not inspiring. I am only following what I believe I’m here on this earth to do. No, I don’t know what that looks like with 100% certainty. But I do know that a truer life is one in which you are true to yourself.
“I’m broke, but I’m happy. I’m poor but I’m kind.” Alaniss Morrisette used those words in a song that I feel like epitomizes my life.
I will go boldly into that future. And I will hope that others are true to themselves and follow their dreams.
But I, I am not inspiring. But now, I am an writer, artist, photographer…and some kind of crazy homesteader. I’ve got one hand in my pocket…and I’ll be fine, fine fine.