I Dreamed a Dream and Time Gone By

There are people who haven't figured out what they really want in life yet, while there are those who are passionate about their dreams, and desires of their hearts, but are nowhere near them because 'life happened'. 


Both cases are depressing, and it almost feels as if time is running short, if not lost. It forces you to battle questions of self-worth, tricks you into losing self-esteem, and makes you want to abandon all hope. I know, because I've been there, and I'm still here - 

Five years ago, before graduating from college, I painted a vivid picture of myself - where I'd be, the milestones I'd achieve, and the things I will have had experienced, by the time I'm 25. Here's what I wrote - 
In 2018, I will have been a manager, earning P100K (or $2,000) net monthly; ready to resign in 2019 to focus on and grow my small businesses. I will have been engaged to the love of my life, and in the process of planning our wedding. I will have traveled to Europe and write about my (mis)adventures in finding quaint and rustic cafes,  I will have become an inspirational blogger, with a 100K + reach, who shares Jesus to the world through her experiences as a wife, mother, and as a woman after His own heart. 
It's 2018, and I haven't even crossed a single milestone in its exact form. I bet most of us haven't, despite the facade of #goals everywhere. But in one way or another - we're still here. We've survived the storms, we're gracing through life's disarray, and we're alive and breathing, and that's enough for now. To live, in the now. To really, really live. . .


In the process of braving through the storm, I've learned that to live, doesn't mean "to achieve" or "to have". If it were, then I will only be measured by achievements, experiences, and possessions.  For me, to live is "TO BE". We hear it like a mixed tape of many versions - BE the best version of yourself, BE <insert adjective> + -er, BE something. It's a paradox that perhaps, only a few would accept even if they don't understand.

Having this mindset made me unfurl my fingers and release myself from all the "Should be's" and "Must have's" that steal my present joy away. It made me start the process of letting go of the remnants of the past that constantly hurt me when I think about them, because I know that living in the past will only make me bitter, vengeful, and filled with resentment. It is through the storm that I discovered who I wanted to be - "A pursuer and doer of faith. Grateful and Happy. Gentle with choice of words and tone. Slow to Anger. Quick to forgive. and BE MORE LOVING." It serves as my heart's compass through out the journey, but more like a blueprint of what matters at the end of the day regardless of where I am in my dream board.
My case : I had this bad habit of zooming in on things that "aren't" happening the way I want them to, and then go the round about of sulking, being easily irritated, and then harboring self-hate for even wanting "such things" to happen. It came to a point where I admitted to myself that "I wasn't happy". After months of prayer, meditation, and reading through articles good for the soul, I learned that happiness comes from a grateful heart. If only I focused on the things that went right, what is good, what is pleasing; perhaps my blessings and provisions for the day, and be grateful for them, I'd be happy. But I wasn't. This realization prompted me to learn how to be "GRATEFUL", so I'd be happy. It materialized as I wrote 3 things to be grateful for everyday, and saying "thank you" often. I've tested it a few times (more about it in a different post) and it is indeed true, that what you give out - the universe throws back at you! 
The case of delayed dreams : You're sad now, because you haven't achieved x yet. But why can't you be happy now, in the process of achieving x? You see, the -er comes after the base. The "best", only comes after the -er. Be happy now, set milestones you can mark to be happier, and probably be at your happiest when you've finally done the big thing.  
More than what we "achieve" or "have", it's all about "who we become" in the process -
when things aren't going our way, when everything blows up and hits rock bottom, when the unexpected catches us off guard, when prayers are delayed or not even answered, when God is silent to our cries; all the more when we are living a life of abundance, when the perfect time for His best arrives, and when He says yes or gives us more than what we've asked for.

The duration of the process is always a mystery, but like most wall quotes say "TRUST THE PROCESS". Flowers start as seedlings, there's autumn before winter, there's a whole bunch of ingredients, baking and frosting before a feisty cake becomes drool-worthy :p

Regardless of our age, it's never too late to "BE WHO WE WANT TO BE".
And as for the deepest desires of our hearts? Our wildest, biggest dreams?
We'll get there. One day at a time. One step at a time.

May our journey be filled with wonder :)
Wondering @2AM ,
Bea Patricia