What might happen if you dare to dream?

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Once upon a time there was a little girl who lived in a dolls house. It was only big enough for her, which was fortunate because that was all she had. And anyway, at the time, it almost felt too much as she sought solace from the big bad world she had been roaming through, wild and free. She found a place for everything and everything in its place. And bit by bit, day by day, the chaos of the world around calmed and she learnt to tame herself too. And then she taught herself how to dream…

But what happens when you get everything you’ve ever dreamt of? Are you happy? Does something feel missing? Or do you dare to dream of more?

This week I stood inside a house: a dream house. A house that the little girl never imagined might be hers. A board outside read sold because that dream house might just be mine.

But dare I dream? Dare I let go of fear and trust in faith? Dare I let my imagination turn impossibilities into hopes and wishes and watch my heart soar?

Because dreams don’t always come true. You hear about it everyday.

I think about that little girl. How she felt. How she behaved. The lessons she taught herself. I remember.

I quietly whisper to my heart and hold on tightly to my hopes with faith…

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Home Time

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I type this as I travel to the airport. I’m going home. I feel horrid. At least I think I do.

The feeling has snuck up on me slowly. Three weeks away is a long time but never long enough. Or too long? I’m still unsure. All I know is that I always, without fail, hate the final day and that there is no fighting that feeling, no matter how hard I try. And sadly, that knowledge sometimes seeps away at the rest of those weeks.

On Friday I felt it as a longing; homesickness. I missed my bed and my bath, my sheets and my sofa, the choice of my clothes in my wardrobe, the views from my window. Even my car. I knew today was coming and I couldn’t escape it. I wanted to fast forward. Impossible.

At the weekend I wanted to wish that feeling away. I pushed it to the back of my mind and sunk my feet into the sand whilst secretly counting days. I savoured those remaining few moments. The final this, the last that.

Then yesterday it really hit. I hate it.

I woke this morning with it there on my mind. When the flight is late in the day it is always worse. Each final day has taught me to fear it a little more.

Three weeks is a long time to get lost.

I always travel home in my make-up and dressed for life at home, never flip flops. I try to remember who I was when I left; how I felt, what I wore, the outward journey. I try to prepare.

And then the airport. Can there a more transient space? And yet a sea of strangers sit, wait. A pause before something else; something new or something familiar. It seems to be something so strange. Anxiety always finds me here because I cannot quite place myself. I guess that’s why they make you carry your passport.

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The following morning the face in the mirror seems strange: too dark skin and a fuzzy brow. The radio plays an unfamiliar song as piece by piece the the house becomes reanimated. I try to reconnect. I pull on half forgotten clothes and drink water straight from the tap. I try to place myself.

Three weeks is a long time. Long enough to forget. It will a few days to find my feet here. Probably longer.

A matter of perspective

Family, Uncategorized

Age twelve, I was terrible. Not yet a teenager but causing my parents more than their fair share of trouble. Their house, my home, became more a drop-in-centre for me and my newly acquired following of friends.

A place that felt small when I was too big for my boots.

My bedroom, a recent garage conversion, provided the perfect private space; a flight of narrow stairs separating us, from them. Pastel paint and ‘Forever Friends’ spoke of my all too recent childhood whilst shared secrets and first kisses were played out in front of an audience of tatty posters from the middle of magazines that screamed from the walls of an attempt to become someone new. Dim light cast doubting shadows.

Down the corridor, the kitchen had become a cold and deserted space. The spacious extension never stepped up to the mark. And the back door marked the boundary between all that was familiar and the world I wanted so desperately to explore. Never locked, it became the direct route to my first attempts at freedom.

Upstairs was different. An oversized TV provided a non-stop soundtrack to the 90s. Tatty pink sofas, that were yet to be replaced, saw my parents take time to stop and rest. When they were home, that’s where they could be found. A constant, my brother would be attempting to transform the scene into the backdrop to some of the greatest sporting victories the world would never see with each bounce of a ball. Upstairs was home.

And nestled at the top of the house were their bedrooms. And somewhere I would soon sacrifice the space and freedom of my downstairs for in favour of angular ceilings and a cramped child’s bed. Just to be near them. Just to feel close. Subconsciously trying so hard to remain a part of them whilst the rest of the world slowly succeeded in pulling me under and away.

Rightmove?

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I’m looking for my dream home. Correction, we are.

After a day spent on Rightmove, endless phone calls to agents, visits to hopeful sellers and then follow up emails all whilst navigating my way around the Hertfordshire countryside on an iPhone with a rapidly dying battery and with the company of a grizzly nearly two year old, I am shattered. And I have come to the conclusion that dream homes don’t exist.

Except in your dreams.

My partner/the father of my child/the boy I live with (we aren’t married and I cannot help but struggle to find a name that fits!) wants a big garden, an en suit or second bathroom, at least three bedrooms, open plan living spaces and off street parking in a rural location. And he has been making sensible decisions and investing all he has in to property since the age of 21. So how can I compromise his dreams?

But the silly thing is I don’t care about any of this. Because this is his dream, not mine.

My dream is a feeling. A feeling that no estate agent can conjure up with deceptively well-shot photographs and strategic showings.

And then I know than I am prone to invest too much in feelings. And that I can be fickle. How will I know when I have found what I am looking for? What if I have already found it? What if I never do? If I find it, will it be enough?

But, in the meantime, we still need somewhere to live…