When you give up on a dream, a part of you dies. A part of you mourns. A part of you cries. How to survive the death of a dream can sometimes be problematic. Depression can overtake you when there is nothing else to fill its place.
Sometimes it is a choice made for us. Sometimes it is a choice we make. Sometimes it dies slowly over time as events and situations dictate and we are no longer strong enough to hold onto it. We can no longer endure the pain which comes from unfulfilled dreams.
If we are lucky, we find something to fill the empty space. We find something more tangible, something which won’t break our heart if it isn’t achievable. But we will always remember that one, that one special dream we held onto for as long as we possibly could until we realized our fingers no longer grasped the tiniest shard of its shattered essence.
Other dreams seem like nothing in comparison. They seem like children’s toys so easily picked up after being discarded along the path. Pick them up, brush them off, play with them and before we know it, they once again clutter the path left far behind. While we look to the stars and ask why, why we could not attain that one special dream, that one which we knew would fill the empty spaces, seal the cracks left from the ages, and embrace the crumbling structure that was once our soul.
Dreams come and go. They change as we change, but there is always just one which stays with us regardless of who we become or how our desires morph and our needs grow. Over time we thought to let it go, always though a fragment remains which we cling to. Small reminders give us hope while others crush that hope again and again and somewhere our minds shudder, our hearts crack, our souls whither and collapse beneath the weight.
I stand, often, naked, alone, in a shower, letting the hot water flow over me. Sometimes it rejuvenates me, other times I dream it washes the weight of life down the drain. I don’t know how I lift my foot each time to take my next step. I only know I do. To do so without a dream is the loneliest thing I’ve ever done.
It is disconcerting to realize I don’t know where my next step will take me. All I see before me is a blank slate. No dreams to imagine what it will look like, not even a beginning of a path or lantern to light the way. Sometimes living without a dream is freeing, is liberating, other times it is like facing death, like giving up on everything. But a dream is a dream, it isn’t my life. I don’t give up on life. I only give up on dreaming what it might become. That really isn’t so bad as it sounds because now it has infinite possibilities just no longer captured within the confined spaces of a dream.