Still Dreaming, Again
I want to thank Sheri Robinson, Editor Babe for her help in telling this story
I’m standing in line at my local Starbucks waiting to order my current favorite: a semi healthy, grande-soy-latte-105*-no- foam latte (ahhh, ordering coffee is now such an adventure!) Behind me are two young women discussing their future. The tall one tells her friend, “Why don’t you just give up? No one’s going to publish your poems.” To this, the poet sighs, “But it’s my dream.”
Dreaming one thing; doing another. I never failed at anything – (wink, wink ) . . . although - I may have been less successful at many things including being a poet laureate, published author, a professional writer.
I, too, wrote poems during those dark brooding adolescent years. On 8 x 11 ½ inch lined binder paper, secured in a black plastic spiral notebook, I deposited lyrical expressions – images of the torture of being so misunderstood. . . I, too, dreamt of publishing my work. But, then my focus changed. Boys distracted me and I postponed my dream.
In my 20s, I started writing a novel: a fictional tale of a young woman who had yet to discover her identity and her strength (goals, mind you, I had yet to discover within myself). I titled the book, Imprisoned Shadow, an appropriate name for those anguish-filled, soul-searching, personality-developing years. However, this time, it was the joy (although time-consuming effort) of raising a family; Mom – my name, my title, my pseudonym - distracted me and I blissfully postponed my dream.
Then, the worst day of my life occurred . . . I had my 30th birthday! Remember, we couldn’t trust anyone over 30 and now I was . . . . Ouch . . . 30! However, with my years of experience being a parent, I claimed a renewed faith in the future and I decided to write a child user guide - an updated version of the Dr. Spock's Baby & Child Care™. It was to be an encyclopedia of sorts, providing all my practical “know how” of what to-do and when-to-do its, such as placing a plastic wading pool under the highchair when teaching a child how to drink from a cup; or laying a full-length mirror sideways on the floor so that a playmate was always in the room. I typed and typed, and typed, one copy for me, one copy for my publisher. But, inevitably, as, my “job” became a “career” - distracted I became, postponed became my dream.
Sometime during my early 40s, I was introduced to espresso. As this new love affair began, a new problem presented itself: where could I find great coffee outside my neighborhood? Yes, I might find a mocha frappuccino here and there, but these locations were far and few between. Ah, ha! I saw a need for a coffee travel book. And, of course, I was the perfect person to write the “Latte Highway.” (After all, these were the prehistoric days before Starbucks and Pete’s Coffee became as essential to the very function of my life as sunshine, clean water, fresh air.) But, alas, as time passed, the promise of the next best-selling travel guide became more and more faint, and then stilled altogether as the emergence of a new diversion reared its head: the birth of the Starbucks Gold Reward Card. The almost sinister lure of endless ounces of this steamy black elixir and its flavorful accompaniments – all “free” with the right accumulation of “stars,” of course – had tempted me away from my original purpose. I heard it whisper, “Why write when you can simply drink . . ., and enjoy all the rewards?” I took the bait. For years afterward, my caffeine-infused mind occasionally would ask. “Now, where did I put that dream?”
I wonder, did my desire to write – really write - ever fade away? Or, did it remain crouching behind my memories and to-do lists. Can I resurrect my dream? Is it ever too late?
Nay, it’s never too late.
And, still dreaming, again!