Letting Go the Dreams of Our Youth ~ By Dionna Sanchez
Hardly anyone lives the life they dreamt of or expected to live when they were younger. We all have those visions of perfect spouses, dream jobs, luxurious homes, and adoring friends. Then reality hits and we are disillusioned as we struggle to adjust.
I’ve come to realize that it’s important (if not vital) that we learn to let go the dreams of our youth. We need to grieve what’s been lost. If we lose a parent and don’t have grandparents around for our babies – we need to be able to grieve the dreams we had of loving grandparents who lavish our children with love and gifts. If we dreamed of having children and find that we can’t – we need to be able to grieve that fact.
Just because our lives don’t turn out the way we dreamed they would be doesn’t mean they can’t be fun, enjoyable, or even bring us great joy. It’s okay to grieve the loss of something in your life; as long as grieving it doesn’t become a lifelong thing but allows you to move on and embrace what you have been given.
I was given a wonderful husband. He has taught me so much and he loves me unconditionally. I am so blessed to have him in my life. And yet he was married before me. I ended up becoming a full-time custodial stepmom at the age of 23. We never had time to just be newlyweds without a child around. And there were other dreams I had that didn’t quite line up to God’s will for me either. It doesn’t mean I love my husband or my stepson any less to be able to mourn the loss of certain ideals and dreams that I had in my heart. In fact, it truly allows me to love them more. For if I hold onto the “wishes” and the “what if’s,” then I’m only holding myself back from my reality. A reality that has touched my soul and made me a better person.
You can’t go back and change life. You can’t live the way you dreamt of living if certain people, circumstances and “fate” change the course of your life. It is what it is. But you CAN reconcile some things within your heart. You CAN grieve over what was lost so that you are able to hold tenderly what was brought to you instead.
It’s okay for us to have dreams. We encourage our children to have dreams. But we need to realize that often life has detours and God may have other things in mind for us. It’s what we do with these changes in course that truly matters.
For me, I wouldn’t be half the woman I am now without the change in course that God brought into my life. I’m thankful for the lessons and growth He has showed me through the different direction He took me in. And I’ve found in the process that new dreams have replaced the old ones – better, more passionate, and cherished dreams. I’ve chosen to make the most of my life and to see what God sees in it… the good, the beautiful, the rich, and the memorable. It’s every bit (if not more) better than any of my dreams could have ever been.
~ Dionna Sanchez tries to be transparent with other women in the hopes that it will encourage and inspire. Visit her blog weekly at http://beautyinthestorm.blogspot.com or follow her on twitter at: http://www.twitter.com/DionnaSanchez