Thursday, February 16, 2012

In which I receive an answer

A friend of mine had a quotation on a facebook status a few weeks ago. It was simple and straightforward; no need for searching for a deeper meaning. It quite honestly shook me to my core.

''If your dreams do not scare you, they are not big enough.''

This rung loudly over and over in my mind the last few week and after some quick google searches I found that it was an excerpt from Liberian President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf's commencement speech given at Harvard University last spring.

These 12 words quickly became my own personal idealistic conviction. I have never been one to dream big as they say. I had dreams of course, marry the man of my dreams in the temple, have a happy and healthy family, and accomplish something. Just one thing that will make a difference. I have struggled over the last few years to pin point what particularly that was going to be. I am by no means an idiot, but lack a college degree so I always felt that limited me in more ways then one. I will never be a concert pianist that is spotlighted with the New York Philharmonic or save a persons life by being a world class, or even a mediocre Neurosurgeon. I have always had a love of writing though; journals, high school news paper, bloging, and even on special occasions work on my book. I had a thought recently that maybe what I will be "known for" is that I was a great mother. And in truth that would be enough for me. If my children grown up happy and safe, follow their own dreams and hearts and become an inspiring positive force in the world then I will be a happy woman. To me there will be no greater accomplishment.

But-- Seeing as how my children are 4,2, and 1 and who's to say we won't have more I'd say I have a long time until the day comes when I look back and feel that certain accomplishment. In the mean time I need to continually be loving, patient, and something else....

Since we have decided to sell everything we own, rent our home and travel the world everything came full circle for me. Maybe this is my chance to once again find that something that will continue to help define me. All of the experiences that await me and my family; the possibilities are limitless.

Then the so called realistic side of my slips in and I begin to worry-- You are going to a country who's primary language you don't speak. What if you can't communicate with ANYONE. What if I can't make friends? Worse yet, what if your children don't make friends. What if they feel so disconnected by the culture and language differences that they become unhappy? Yes, you are moving your entire life to South are radically changing your life. No more netflix, no more car, no more 24 hour a day plug in to social media, no more family close by, no more familiarity. What am I suppose to do now that I have all this free time? I ask you to take my word for it when I say, at times it can be a terrifying thought.

Then I take a deep breath that snaps me out of my terrifying reverie. The words if your dreams do not scare you, they are not big enough whisper in my mind and I think to myself maybe I am dreaming big enough. I welcome the brightside that is I am embarking on an adventure of a lifetime. If I'm having a hard day communicating with the locals I can easily turn that into a english speaking day with my husband, because I can always find happy stability in him. I will learn not to be affraid of free time. I will not worry that I should be doing something else. Playing with my children will star at the top of my to do list. There will be no more answers of, "We'll do it tomorrow." No more tomorrows for tomorrow my children will be grown up. Benjamin Franklin once said, "Never leave that till tomorrow which you can do today." Well said Mr. Franklin, well said.

- Etheline.

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