We were asked recently, what had happened to our dream. It made me stop and think for a minute..….and wonder what was even behind the question.
It happened recently too when we caught up with some family
and friends and people asked us how come we were still in Batemans Bay and if we weren’t tired of the place by now. I wondered if they were tired of their house, and jobs and lives! I wondered but didn’t ask!
When people do ask these kinds of things I feel like we are supposed to defend ourselves or admit that we are guilty of something but I’m never really sure of what! I feel as if they think we’ve failed in some sort of way – as if we’ve let the team down.
Sometimes I think it’s is that in very real sense we have failed these people – we’ve failed in the task of proving to them that its possible….that people actually can go off and do something. Our success as they see it (in what? Sailing non-stop? )perhaps confirms to them that they too can hope for something, that they may one day be able to achieve the dreams they have that they think about but don’t ever do. Maybe it keeps a little flicker alive for them.
Of course I am sure that there is an alternative….that some people are watching, waiting for it all to go wrong so they can feel confirmed in their thinking that it won’t work – we won’t like sailing, or we won’t keep going. Then they can think that its ok, no one really does that and their own dream can stay safely on the shelf gathering dust and they need not feel like they have failed…..’cos look we tried and it didn’t work! They are secretly happy then, happy that it’s true, they aren’t missing something – even our dream failed.
But this idea of us failing is built on a false idea of what it is we are actually doing! And what it is we are dreaming of!
You see we don’t feel that our staying in Batemans Bay represents a failure. Or an end to our dreams.
Our dream was simply to live on a yacht. To have time for each other and the children
and to walk away from stress and get our health
back in order.
Guess what? Our dreams have become our life!
I think that people who wonder what happened to our dream didn’t really know what we were hoping for.
We are still circumnavigating. We still plan to sail into the Pacific, to NZ, to Tasmania for the wooden boat festival……just ‘cos we aren’t doing it in some perceived time-frame doesn’t mean that we have abandoned our dreams…..just that we are not performing according to yours!
We made a decision to stay here in Batemans Bay because someone needed a house built and we could help. It wasn’t intentional. It wasn’t part of our plan when we arrived but the thing is, this life gives us the capacity to respond to need and to be flexible. This life we have chosen, where we are not struggling with debt, or any kinds of financial burdens, and where we have time every day to do the things that matter to us, this life has given us the opportunity to also be a blessing to others and the family
we are building for are deeply blessed. The house is almost at lock-up. Initially we thought this might be enough but deteriorating health
means even that isn’t sufficient, so we will stay longer – in fcat we will stay until the family are moved in and it really is all over. And – and this is the most important thing – we have no regrets.
I remember the day Peter told me he had made this generous offer and I felt my heart sink – I was more than ready to move on already – but watching this family be delighted with their house and knowing how much we have been able to make their dream a reality has soothed my ruffled feathers more than adequately!
Have we abandoned our dream? Hardly!
I’d say, much more than abandoning it, we have strengthened and clarified it during our stay. We can see now what an amazing opportunity we have to make use of the special skills we have wherever we are. I have done a great deal of writing - got two web-sites up and running, had a number of articles published, a number more accepted for publication, short stories included in anthologies, a large following on my Facebook abuse-support page, and two manuscripts prepared for potential publication. I am living my dream! Doors are opening that I never thought I’d see open and to say I am satisfied and happy would be an understatement!
Peter has sailed the Bight three times, Bass Strait three times - from Albany to Batemans Bay as well as from Albany to Sydney
and then from Albany to Auckland
, NZ. We have both got our marine radio
operators licences and have equipped our boat with things we didn’t even know we needed when we first bought her. When we do leave here to sail further north it will be as better sailors and on a better set-up yacht.
Some may see in this some sort of failure, but I’m not sure quite where!
I think that rather than having abandoned our dream people need to appreciate that living a dream is like walking through a bush trail. There are times of heavy slogging, times of stopping to look at the view, times of catching up with others on the trail, times of rest, and times where the destination
might change…..but they are all part of the journey.
The truth is, we gave up a life of 9 – 5 (or rather , a life of 6 -6 for Peter), where the focus was a few hours of relaxation on the weekend and the rest of life simply filled with busy-ness we gave this up for a life of connection, freedom and health on the water……and this is it – we are living it!