“Livin’ the dream.”
Isn’t that what we all want? To be “Livin’ the Dream”?
It’s pretty subjective, really. The dreams, I mean. What might be the dream for one, could be utter hell for another. A dream set in Disneyland with a K-Pop soundtrack would be hell for me. But then again, I’m not a 13-year-old girl.
When I was a younger man, just having the time to ride and a smile from a pretty face was the dream, and I lived it. I was invincible. Immortal. The world lay at my eager feet and I dove in, head first.
I traveled, I rode, and I raced. I stayed up all night, enjoyed music and food from all over the world, and I loved. I loved deeply. Even crushing heartbreak was somehow delicious.
Then I had another dream. I wanted to build. I wanted to build a team, then a home, then something else I ached to define.
I did those things. I created teams and a home and many other things but none of them felt like they were enough. I don’t mean that in a monetary way or in a way meant to stroke an ego, I mean that although I gained great satisfaction from the process and the eventual creation of the many things I had the good fortune to be involved with, it never satisfied that undefined yearning that I felt.
This dream was much harder to define and therefore, much harder to live. Don’t get me wrong. I was happy, but I knew I had a bigger dream to live.
Then I had a wife. Then I had a child. I had found my dream again. I grabbed it with both hands and I lived the hell out of it.
For years I still rode and raced and loved and I felt a new love that parents know. It felt like everything I had done had led me to that point. I was ‘livin’ the dream’ again, baby!
A decade passed, and then a few more years. In my life, I still had good music, good food, and the kinds of love I, as a younger man, had never imagined, but I felt like somewhere in there I had let the dream slip away. Maybe I had lived all the livin’ there was to be lived in the dream I was living now? I wasn’t sure but I felt that there was still more.
I found myself, once again, between dreams. I could look at my life and see the good things that were there. I took comfort in them but I could still see the possibility of some undefined glorious moments that lay, ready to burst, just beyond the horizon.
That horizon was farther away than it had been before. My steps had grown shorter. Where I had once stridden I now walked at a moderate, and sometimes laboured pace. I was no less determined but the progress towards my dream was tempered.
Like before I was certain that another dream was just there, nebulous and slightly out of reach, but it was there. It was waiting for me to find it again and to live it.
I put my head down and pressed on but something was different. All of my life I had forged on alone. I was single-minded in my purpose. But now, if I tarried or strayed, a hand was there to help me up or to guide me on my way.
Sometimes, it was my wife or my son. Sometimes it was one of the people whose dreams we had lived together. They were there now helping me find my way.
But this dream wasn’t one I needed to find. I was already there. The moment I realized it the music was fuller, the food finer, the love sweeter, and the dream?
I’m still livin’ it, baby. Living the dream.