by Raylina Robinson
Growing up in life we all have dreams. Some dream of being doctors, some dream of being astronauts, some dream of becoming a superstar.
As children we’re encouraged to dream. “Reach for the stars” is what we’re told. We’re encouraged to let our dreams be limitless.
Then, somewhere along the course of this crazy thing called life our dreams become altered. Somewhere along the lines it goes from “reach for the stars” to “reach for what is obtainable.” Somewhere along the lines, our dreams go from what makes us happy, to what is necessary to survive.
As a child, my dream was to be a writer.
For as far back as I can remember I’ve always written poetry, stories, and songs. Writing was my escape. It allowed me to escape. It allowed me to escape the harsh realities I faced in real life. When I wrote, my mother was no longer suffering from an incurable aggressive disease. I was no longer from a broken home. I no longer worried about what city we would move to next, or where our next meal would be coming from.
No, in my writing, I was able to create my own reality. I was able to build a world full of happiness and joy. I was free.
My pen was my savior. As long as I had that, I had everything.
Yet, somewhere along the way I lost faith in my writing. I lost faith in myself. As a single mother living on my own, I abandoned my passion. My focus was providing for my child so that she wouldn’t have the same burdens I faced at her age. I began to look for a Plan B, something that would provide security for us. I placed my dreams on the back burner and faced reality. I would take whatever job I could to ensure there would be food to fill our stomachs. I would abandon my first love to guarantee a roof over our heads. It wasn’t what I wanted to do, but what I needed to do.
Then, I had an epiphany.
I looked at my daughter who was so full of innocence. Hope and faith radiated from her eyes. Belief in her dream to become a singer. How could I guiltlessly support her, telling her to never give up, when in fact that was exactly what I was doing. I had taught her to be strong. I had taught her to be kind.
Though by telling her one thing, and doing another, I was teaching her something that I didn’t believe in. I was teaching her how to be a hypocrite.
As a mother, it is my job to lead by example. It is my responsibility to show my little girl that life is going to throw you curve balls, but life keeps going. So that is what she would have to do as well. It is my duty to teach her that there will be days where she wants to give up, but that she shouldn’t. There will be failures, setbacks, and disappointments, but she cannot allow that to stop her.
So as I reevaluate my life and think about all the wisdom I want to share with my baby girl, I pick up my pen. I will lead by example and show her it is ok to follow her dreams. I will reacquaint myself with my long lost love, my savior in my darkest times.
Once again, I will write, because it is never too late to start again.