Mint Editor’s Choice: Patience for A Dream
I have three separate paths I take to the train station each day. I alternate depending on the day, weather, and the amount of people I have to pass by in order to get to the station. I alternate if I have high heels on or if my hair gets frizzy as soon as the NYC air hits it. No matter the circumstance, I’m always headed to the same place, work. Perhaps the paths give me the illusion of spontaneity, but to be quite honest, there is nothing spontaneous about what I do each day.
Don’t get me wrong, I love my job. Though there are many people in this world who do my job, as a senior admissions counselor, I still feel special. A person who has access to education and can grant it to others, feels like a gift to me. A gift I am so thankful to have and one that I think about constantly. But there is another gift I think of, and it’s actually what I’m doing at this very moment, writing.
A few years ago I wrote a chilling story about a black girl who was afraid of the dark. I shared it with a friend and she wanted me to read it at an event. People loved it, to the point where they thought the story was real and offered condolences for a character I made die. I chuckled because I definitely told them it was fiction before I read it, but I was grateful. I felt the impact. I saw my gift.
My subconscious knew at six years old that writing and Marquita were two entities that would always be intertwined. And so for years, up until this very point, I write.
I create safe havens for myself and ultimately for the people who read my work. My characters are flawed like me and many of the people around me. The blog posts I write ponder on large life questions and each time I get a message thanking me for my words, I beam a little with pride.
But often times I feel stuck and I worry, that my work and my gift will never converge. That the dreams I have of being a successful author and seeing my words touch more people are all in vain. I get up each day and take one of those three paths, thinking that one day it might lead me somewhere different. But it doesn’t, and as I head to work each day, dreaming of something that can’t be at this moment, I wonder if it will ever be. I think of the people around me who quit their jobs and venture towards their dreams. Most of their Instagram captions or LinkedIn posts say it was time to follow their dreams and they couldn’t just sit idly by as time passes them.
I always read those posts with a weary mind. While I’m so happy for them, I wonder am I being idle? Am I not following my dreams? The answer might be yes, but I have to take care of myself. I have responsibilities and quitting my job is something I simply can’t afford to do. It’s not practical. Perhaps that’s my problem, I’m too practical.
In an ideal world, I would go to a cabin somewhere and just spend months finishing my book. I would come back with a book deal and reap the benefits of my hard work. My dream would turn into reality.
But the truth is for myself and a lot of people, we have to be patient. Patient for a dream that hasn’t come to fruition yet, patient for the fulfillment that comes from doing what you really want to do. I have to remind myself that others’ journeys are not mine and that every time I write, a path that I can’t yet see is forming.
With that knowledge, I bring a change to my morning routine. I take three different paths to work and I alternate depending on various circumstances in and out of my control. Despite going to the same place ever day, I make sure to create a different world for myself each morning. I write. Whether it’s for two minutes or thirty, I write and with each world I create, real or fictional I make a different path for myself. Who knows, maybe one day I will walk to the train station on one of my three paths and it will take me somewhere different?
Despite going to the same place ever day, I make sure to create a different world for myself each morning.
I write. Whether it’s for two minutes or thirty, I write and with each world I create, real or fictional I make a different path for myself. Who knows, maybe one day I will walk to the train station on one of my three paths and it will take me somewhere different?