When you were a child, did you ever have a teacher ask you what you wanted to be when you grew up? Do you remember what you answered? If you do remember, how does that differ from the life you’re living now? And, the all important question, why?
Due to things taking place with people in my life, I began to think about the regrets people have, especially as they get older, for all the things that never happened that they wish had happened. This led to thinking about where we are first made aware of deciding what we want to be when we become adults.
For me, that question came from my first grade teacher Mrs. Steers. At that time I wanted to be both a nurse and a teacher. I think it was because I wanted people to be free from illness and learn all they could to be healthy and happy. (I’m sure, as a six-year-old, I wouldn’t have put it that way at the time.) In a way, an unconventional way, I did become both of these things. So, no regrets in that instance.
When you start to be classified as a “senior citizen” you begin to think about the path you’ve walked and all the hopes and dreams you had as a much younger person. In the course of my thinking on this subject, I’ve taken the time to look at those who are my senior. I’ve often wondered about “grumpy old people” and why they might be that way. I know for some it’s the thought that the end of this incarnation is nearing. For others it may be the feeling of no longer being a “useful” member of society and even being a burden to those they love. There is one other thing I have observed…regret over dreams that were never fulfilled. This could have been for fear of taking the risk, not having enough passion to see it through, letting the desire and needs of others outweigh your own, etc. Still, that disgruntled feeling is there and it shows.
When we are children, anything seems possible and so we dream..BIG. As we grow older, we are repeatedly told about the reality of being an adult. “Nose to the grindstone.” seems to be the mantra that is shoved down our throats, jammed in our ears and bombarded in our brains until all we see is why those childhood dreams can’t become a reality. Life seems to challenge us at every turn encouraging us to give up.
Not everyone buys into this (bravo!), but many do. One day turns into the next until you find yourself in your 40s and nowhere near where you dreamed you’d be at that age. You’ve “come to terms” with how your life is and the days continue to pass by. Oh, you might create a “bucket list” for retirement. After all, the kids will be grown, you’ll have less responsibilities and then you can at least, maybe, do a few of the things you dreamed about. Somewhere within you a little voice may add, “Or not.” The days pass by and you reach your 60s. You’ve still got that bucket list, but circumstances, once again, are making the promise of manifesting that list bleak.
I’m not trying to be a Debbie Downer here, honest. I’m just explaining the making of a “grumpy old person”. What’s interesting is that we’ve always had a choice – actually, lots of choices.
For years, I had totally forgotten about that desire belonging to the first grade version of myself. I was so busy trying to do things that people – parents, teachers, and others – approved of that it just never occurred to me. Those same people I was trying so hard to please confused me at times. I was so confused by the age of 12 that I didn’t know what I wanted to become as an adult. I still really didn’t know when I was a senior in high school so I just graduated, got a job, got married and became a mom. Not exactly on track here for becoming a nurse or a teacher, huh?
My point is that I’m not the only one to whom this has happened. It’s that programming thing I talk about so much. Most of us forget how to think for ourselves, be who we really are and do what we really want to do. Because of that, we go down a road that doesn’t lead us anywhere near where we really wanted to go. You know what? It’s never too late to begin that journey to that destination you dreamed of reaching.
You must know, by now, that almost nothing “conventional” ever happens to me. Why should this be any different? It would be many, many years before I would even realize that I had done just exactly what my six-year-old self had wanted. Little did my younger self realize that “nurse” would actually mean “healer” and that it would be in areas that were unknown or little known back in the 1950s. And it would be my choice of spiritual paths that would lead me to become a teacher of, not only, that spiritual path but many subjects related to it.
I do have a bucket list. It’s small. One of the items has been on the list for about 40 years. I think that’s because some part of me gave up for a while. I’ve begun to believe again that it’s still possible and I’m not letting go! The last item on the list I won’t experience until later in life – to be at least as cognizant and healthy as I am right now on the last day of this incarnation. If belief, trust, and determination have anything to do with manifesting that reality, then I will still be writing, teaching and helping others heal until the very end. How awesome is that?!
Don’t ever give up. Sometimes things manifest in the strangest ways imaginable. Hold onto your dreams. Let no one talk you out of them. If you’ve had to set them aside for a while, perhaps it’s time to pick them back up and breathe life back into them. It’s NEVER too late for life to be exactly the way you’ve always dreamed.