Right now, I’m learning how to dream. Again. And differently. You see, I thought all of my dreams were dead. And some of them needed to die. But oh! Oh I’m dreaming again and just have to tell you…
About four years ago, I was on the cusp of all my dreams coming true. I was 25 years old, had graduated business school and had two stellar job offers in the midst of a global recession: one at the World Bank and the other with a leading commercial bank in Europe. I would be able to live independently, provide for myself, rise up in an organization, travel as I wished…
But the anxiety kept getting worse and worse, the closer to my moving date and starting my new life. I was living with my parents and slowly started detaching from all social activities, leaving the house only for pilates and my morning gas station coffee. Within a couple months, I wasn’t even talking, severely depressed, trying to numb with increasing anti-anxiety medicines and was just a mess.
Looking back, I can see I was believing so many lies…lies that I was a fraud, that I could never do it on my own, that I’d never have enough, that I didn’t deserve any of this, that I needed no one, that people were out to take advantage of my and no one could be trusted…Oh the list! But mind you, these were all in place in my mind long, long before that July when life fell apart, or rather I did.
I fell apart. And maybe you’ve been there. I now understand that I had a nervous breakdown. Why? Because I started remembering. Remembering horrible abuse that had happened. For 17 years I couldn’t remember and would fake knowing the stories…it all started coming back. And it was horrible. I didn’t know what was happening or why me or why now…now when all that I dreamt of was about to happen.
But it didn’t. I felt like all my dreams evaporated. But if I can tell you one thing I learned…my dreams build on lies. My old dreams, that is. I was building dreams to try to tear down lies and prove my worth and conquer the world… because some people hurt me very deeply, very young. But those were just lies.
And now, I’ve traveled quite a down and know, yes know, the Truth! I know that I don’t have to prove my place in the room because of my smarts. I know that I can be creative just like I was when I was little. You see, somewhere along the way, I equated art with vulnerability and it was easier to protect myself by waging wars of logic. But no more!
The truth is I’m madly loved by God and many, many people. And that changes everything! He decided to give me the truth about my past by lifting the traumatic amnesia so I could dream true, big and new dreams!
As I look back, I feel those dreams of the big career, the complete self—sufficiency, I kind of laugh! To think I couldn’t thrive or survive without people?!
Now, these years, I’ve learned that having nothing, you’re given everything! I live in a family member’s condo but haven’t been able to have full-time or sometimes even part-time work due to the intensity of PTS. (But can we just celebrate right now that I’ve healing and am even earning some income from freelance writing? Yeah for progress and let’s celebrate the small stuff because it’s big stuff!)
And I’ll never forget this one time… My sweet mom was coming to visit but I had no money for groceries. I can’t count the number of times my bank account has been single digit or just cents. This was one of those times. I just wanted to make her a nice breakfast. So I prayed. And I made a list of what I would buy if I had the money. And I prayed.
Coming home from a walk that very day, I saw two brown plastic bags by my door which was strange because I had a code for safety. I bent down and peaked…and found tomatoes, eggs, English muffins and more! It was exactly what I had on my list. And the eggs were still cold!
Yes, we all need each other! And we need each other to dream again.
You see, I abandoned all my dreams. But I’m praying and talking and dreaming new ones now! And I know, I just know, you have important, big, new dreams too. One thing that’s helped me so much is just being creative…paintings paper towels, making terrariums, anything! And now, I’m receiving new dreams and they include others…
Can I one of my dreams with you? Maybe we can hope and dream all together! Here it goes: I want to devote my life to creating beauty and if that means I have to build a business around it, I will.
Dreaming. Again. And those dreams may be different than before but just like me and you when we know Truth, we’re becoming!