The above quote was shared on MakeItUltra blog and it struck a chord with me.
What are we without our dreams?
Growing up I had dreams, nothing extraordinary; study hard to get the best grades I could, go to uni, get a job, fall in love, get married, have children.
The last being the most important to me.
My dream was to be a mum.
The other goals were just stepping stones along the way. Not being able to have children naturally was devastating because it was my dream that had been destroyed, each round of IVF that didn’t work further destroyed me as a person. I would have done anything to become a mum and that’s where adoption came into play.
Before the rigorous assessment, all prospective adopters have to attend a preparation course which gives an overview of the process and also goes into the type of experiences adopted children may have had and how this may affect them long term. To be honest, I don’t think anything they said would have changed my mind about adoption as it was the only path open to us.
And remember, this was my dream, my life goal,
the thing that mattered to me above everything else.
So we adopted two boys and I know that being in our family has made such a huge difference to their lives but it has not been easy. Right from the outset we have had to deal with extremely challenging behaviour and have received very little support in doing so.
Was this my dream?
Before I was diagnosed with cancer I was job hunting, having given up work to look after the children. In September 2014 the younger one was due to start high school, so that summer I had started applying for jobs that would fit in with school holidays. Mainly part time admin roles in school offices.
Was this what I wanted?
Not really, but after eight years of being a stay at home mum, I had lost my identity. All I did revolved around home and family, even my hobbies; baking, gardening, needlework. I wanted a job so that I could be me, so that I could interact with people who weren’t just mum-friends (not that there’s anything I don’t love about my mum friends). But the job had to fit in with my responsibilities as a mum/carer for our boys, so that limited my options. My confidence was low and I was almost desperate to find something that would boost it.
And then I got cancer.
Everything in life was put on hold as I went through treatment, then, just as I thought things had a glimmer of getting back to some kind of normal I was hit with a tidal wave of depression and PTSD. And suddenly, I had no idea what I wanted out of life anymore. I knew that the role as parent carer for our children was not enough but I had no dreams, nothing to aspire to, and no hope of escaping the life I had brought upon myself.
If you give up on your dreams, what’s left?
So, what is left? Where are my dreams? What do I want from life?
Goals. Aspirations. Purpose.