When I was kid, I wanted to be a veterinarian because I loved animals. Yes, it was that simple. I swore I would spend my life caring for furry friends, and I couldn’t wait to grow up. Somewhere along the way I learned about all of the schooling, and on a subconscious level my pre-adult self began to talk myself out of that dream.
It has been several years since I really thought about what I dreamed of being as a kid, but about a month ago it came bubbling to the surface through my tears at my son’s preschool graduation. I naively believed that I would not get all that emotional at his adorable ceremony, but there I was, tears welling in my eyes. It was less about the fact that he is headed to kindergarten. It was something else. I was choking back tears because as each graduating kid came up to the front, their teacher read a little bit about them, including what they want to be when they grow up.
“This is my friend, ___, and she wants to be a paleontologist when she grows up!”
“This is my friend, ___, and he wants to be a clown when he grows up!”
“This is my friend, ___, and she wants to rescue sea turtles when she grows up!”
“This is my friend, ___, and he wants to be a daddy when he grows ups!”
These kids inspired me. So innocent and not at all afraid to dream big. They aren’t concerned with how much the job pays or what people will think or how much schooling they need.
I started to wonder, at what age do we start to doubt ourselves? At what age do we start to talk ourselves out of our dreams? And bigger yet–at what age do we stop dreaming altogether? And how do I make it so that my kids continue to dream and dream big?
All of a sudden I thought of our dream boards! And I realized we really didn’t do one this year!
It may sound simple, but one of our favorite things to do as a family is to make a dream board. My husband and I started a dream board back in 2014 and each year, in December, we update it to prepare for the new year. Which things did we accomplish? Which ones should we leave on there? Nothing is off the table. No filters, and nothing is too big to dream.
in 2016 and 2017 we decided to involve our son, Daniel. The first year it was Disney World and the second year it was the beach. Wouldn’t you know it, we have done both of the things that he put on there! It took a couple years, but we crossed both of his dreams off of the list! To be honest, I had NO IDEA how either of those things would happen. But you see, that’s the adult in me poking it’s ugly head again.
He didn’t see the obstacles; he didn’t see the cost or the logistics. He simply saw a dream and gave it life.
I am vowing right here and right now that every single year we will make a dream board and our kids will help contribute to it. We can help them to dream and dream big, and they can teach us to keep dreaming big!
There is something so powerful about placing a dream out there and then accomplishing it, and it means even more when you do it with your child! So if you do not already have one, I challenge you to create a dream board and get your kids involved! It is so refreshing to hear what their little minds think up. I feel like as we grow older we stop dreaming, but we can teach our kiddos to dream and they, in turn, can teach us to KEEP dreaming!
What is a dream you have? What is a dream your child has?