Langston Hughes had a number of thoughts on A Dream Deferred. I don't have answers to all of his questions, but I've finally arrived at what I feel is a suitable answer for me: A Dream Deferred is Not A Dream Defeated.

It took me some time to wrap my fingers around that place of clarity and hold on for all I was worth. I'm still clutching kind of frantically.

In those first moments, I felt like I was back in 2006, redefining everything about myself and my world. How was this possible? These plans... my entire life had been marching solidly in one direction for the last 18 months and then all of a sudden... just like that... snap of my fingers... and it's gone. The overwhelming reality mocked me, and everything fell away. How had I been so misled? How had I not seen this upfront? How could it spiral so far out of my grasp in just seconds?

The sense of loss, overwhelming. The disappointment, crushing. The stark reality, just black.

One of those moments you never want to have. And if you do, you never want to have them again. "I do not eat. I do not sleep. I cannot focus. I cannot study. I cannot think. I cannot breathe." It's crazy how life can twist back in on itself and in an instant thrust you back across years and scars like a song on repeat to the same feelings you thought you had laid to rest for good. Yet here I was. Again.

Even being a veteran at life-shattering moments, in the center of the crash, it's hard to see anything rational. The pain is too great. The realization that what you thought was happening... just isn't. To avoid making it any worse for myself, I immediately deleted my FaceBook. It seemed like the right answer at the time. I was in a place where I was reeling, hurting, and trying to re-establish myself after having the foundation of my life rocked. For a few days I didn't even know how I would come back from something like this. It seemed akin to a deathblow. Done. I was just done. It was over. The dream was dead. Everything splintered, and the dream of the last 18 months was murdered. The last thing I wanted in that space was to talk about why my going party was cancelled to 600+ people. So I erased it. Some people noticed, most didn't. But for me it was easier if that extra burden was just... gone.

I learned in 2006 how helpful other people could be, how sharing your pain can be a release, but this time I thought it would be easier to withdraw further into myself. I don't know why that was my answer. Over the last few months, I've been moving more and more toward introvertedness, which I can't explain. But it's been happening. So I closed myself off. I hid away. I nursed my depression, and buried myself in frisbee and work, the two best things I had in the moment. Like I said, I don't have all the answers. This problem isn't fixed, but I know it's there, and that's the first step.

Once I did start letting people in, they all wanted to have their say about what I should do. They all meant well, of course, and I appreciated them trying to be there for me, but it just wasn't working. This was further compounded by the ridiculous notion (but a legitimate one that still affects me) that this wasn't just a disappointment for myself, but that I was letting everyone else down too. So many people were rooting for me, encouraging me, sometimes I even think that some people live through me. Maybe that's narcissistic, but I just remember how people have commented how impressed they were that I was one of those people who do it. That goes for it, no matter what. I won't be held back. I won't back down. I won't take no for an answer. How many people settle instead of fighting for their dreams? I was ready to this time. I was broken. I was devastated. I wasn't sure how to pick myself up.

I'm working on it now though. I'm getting there. I didn't let the redefinition of myself stop me. I didn't let relearning how to walk stop me.

So why would I let money stop me? The way is not yet crystal-clear, but that doesn't mean I'm going to stop fighting. I'm a dreamer, and dreamers implement impractical solutions to achieve the unachievable. Yes, I'm not leaving in September. Yes, I've had to shift focus. Yes, I'm still rebuilding. Yes, it's going to be INCREDIBLY difficult. Maybe impossible. But I'm not giving up. I'm not set, I don't have the solutions laid out before me, but I'm back on my feet. I'm picking myself up. I'm dusting myself off. And I've got my dukes up again.

One of the first moments I knew I had decided to continue on was when this song came on the other day and I resonated completely with its message.

This post is a little more raw than I usually like to post, but it is what it is I guess. Time for some honesty and some vulnerability I guess. I'm still here, I'm not in danger, and I'm trying to rebuild the wreckage of my path so that my dream becomes reality. Life threw me an asteroid, but I'm not going to let that stop me. I'm glad that I'm strong enough now to bounce back from something like this, even when I didn't see how at the outset. Onward. Upward. "It's okay not to be okay."


Sarah said…
I miss you, you crazy, fabulous, amazing, risk-taking dreamer! If anyone can pull it off, you can.

Bookworm said…
I am so sorry you are in pain. You've pulled through tough things before and I know you will again. And you'll be amazing (again). Someone wise once told me "Your potential is only limited by that which you do not become."
Peace, brother.
Tabitha said…
I had never heard that song before - thank you for sharing it! I'm not very good at reading blogs so if you had gone from facebook forever that would sever the main contact I have with you and the thought of that makes me sad. I also understand how silly facebook can be at times. I wish I was more eloquent with words and knew the perfect thing to say and how to say it that would make everything better - not because you need that just cause that's how I roll - but I know I can say that I'm glad you were willing to share this with us because we care a lot - enough that we want to know what's going on in your life both the good and the bad. Great friends don't want to only be your friends when things are going well. We're here for you in any way we can be. It is ok to not be ok - and I know that soon you will be ok because you're amazing like that. Miss you tons!
Tabitha said…
grr. wrote a lovely long comment and it got erased :( I hadn't heard that song before and I really like it so thank you so much for sharing it. I'm afraid I'm really horrible at reading blogs consistently so if you got rid of facebook entirely it would sever our main point of contact which makes me sad. I also completely understand how silly facebook can be and taking a break. I really wish I knew what to say and how to say it to make everything better - not because you need that but because that's how I roll but I can say that I'm glad you were willing to share this with us because we care about you and want to know what's going on in your life, not just the good stuff but the not so great stuff too. It IS ok to not be ok - and I know you'll be ok soon. You've made it through soooo much already. You are strong and amazing. We're here for you! Miss you!
David Hulet said…
@Tabby: It didn't get erased, they are just moderated... :)

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