"Go Confidently in the Direction of your Dreams. Live the Life you have Imagined."
"Go Confidently in the Direction of your Dreams. Live the Life you have Imagined." -Henry David Thoreau
I remember when I first stumbled upon this quote, I was an insecure 13 year old just doing my best to navigate the perils of middle school. It immediately jumped out at me and I knew with my innermost being that these words were spectacularly true. Truth has a way of doing that to a person, standing out; like text passed over with a highlighter on pages or hitting the very depths of your soul through the spoken word, like an elation of the heart when you hear it. My being knew then, circa 1997, that if I held a high vision for my life and also took the action steps towards that life of my dreams, that anything was possible.
Fast forward 23 years later and I'm sitting on my balcony in the Dominican Republic with the turquoise water glistening in front of me, the ocean breeze against my face, a sweet bird singing in the tree, with my husband beside me and my beautiful baby boy napping in his room. Dreams do come true. Although I've always dreamed of living life abroad in multiple locations many months out of the year, I wasn't ever sure of exactly how I would make that reality. When I was younger I studied abroad, even living in Europe for almost a year while I studied French History for my Master's degree. I thought about bartending my way around the world or flying as a corporate flight attendant but nothing like that ever felt right at the time. So I pursued photography and continued to bartend throughout my 20s and early 30s at my favorite family owned restaurant. These careers were the only ones that felt right and afforded me the luxury of freedom and travel, the luxury of being able to pick up and leave at anytime. My soul has always craved freedom so being able to pack a bag whenever I wished was (and still is) very important to me.
The chaotic beauty of 2020 redirected my husband Chad and I onto a path that might have taken us many years to get where we are today, if at all. As wild as 2020 was, the reason we are currently living the life of our dreams abroad is ironically because of the madness that made up much of last year. Starting a new company, birthing a baby and becoming new parents during a worldwide pandemic wasn't exactly what we had in mind but without it our lives would be very different today. Just like so many others, we have had to PIVOT many many times. Chad has had more careers in 18 months than his entire adult life prior. I went from working 4 shifts a week at a busy restaurant as well as growing my family photography business to barely working at all and taking care of another human being 24/7. So many changes! And as unnerving and scary as times have been throughout the past year or so, I'm so proud of us for flowing (as gracefully as possible) with the curves of life. It's been worth it all to sit here quietly in this exact moment together and watch a pelican soar over the Caribbean sky above us.
Life is full of glorious detours. Like the ebbs and flows of the river; moving, bending and dancing with the unknown. And that unknown can be scary! Heck, as I sit here now we still don't know exactly what we are doing and are winging it as we go. But the key here is that we are moving, we are trying new things, and we are living this gloriously beautiful journey of life to the fullest. I think it's important to learn to dance with the water of life; to keep that softness in your heart and hips and know that there is a beautiful rhythm you are moving to (even if you can't name the song). As Thoreau said, "Go" (implying movement) towards your dreams and also be soft with the exact direction, as the river of life bends and moves to your magical destination all on its own.
A little mid-week musings on life.
Bonne Chance Fellow Travelers,