The Unfortunate Struggles of a Dreamer…

You always want what you don’t have.

And that’s why I have goals. It helps me to accomplish and acquire the things that I really want out of life.

Goals. They often make me reach for things that I might not normally have reached for. And I find that it’s important to remember that it’s not always about meeting a goal, but about setting high standards and reaching as high as you can.

I realized something the other day, and I’m going to let you in on a little secret – a secret that took me years to learn.

Shh!Ready??

A goal is the same thing as a dream. (At least it should be in my opinion.)

Did you get that?

Because it’s true!

When I was little I used to dream about ideas that seemed far-fetched and ridiculous to me:

  • I dreamed about living overseas or maybe even on the sea. (You know like Zack and Cody?) If you don’t get that reference good for you! I envy you… and I blame my oldest daughter!
  • I dreamed about working in a big city. (I imagined traveling via train, with brief case in one hand and a coffee in the other!)
  • And, in general, I hoped to work in a field where I traveled extensively. (Exploring city after city as a high powered working woman!)

The funny thing is, right now, any more, these dreams don’t sound too far-fetched and ridiculous. In fact, they sound doable and in most cases already done.

Yet as a girl growing up in a smaller town… they sounded SO impossible!

And in hind sight, this is what has taught me to always aim high. Because the ONLY difference between a dream and a goal – is your own belief that it can or cannot happen.

The Pride of Stepping out of Your Comfort Zone

And here’s another secret that you may or may not already know… dreams and goals… they are allowed to change! No really – they are! (That’s me still trying to fully convince myself of this!)

As you grow, as you change, so should your dreams. Right?

And I tell you this secret because one day, I had new a dream… and it caught me off guard.

My dream?

To begin blogging.

Aim high! (I always have.) Keep your goals big. (So I do.) And when life starts to take a toll on you – pay that toll…

So I did.

Chicago Toll Booth Bloggy Boot Camp SitsGirls

In an effort to reach high in my goals, I decided to pay toll after toll (after toll!) and visit Chicago for my first blogging conference (Bloggy Boot Camp hosted by the SITSGirls).

And, after I made my decision to attend this conference, I had so much pride in my decision.

I felt empowered that I had let myself make this decision.

I had stepped out of my comfort zone. (The cozy zone where I was Chief Executive Officer of three squirrelly kids and a husband, with a household full of duties – the goal I had chased after and aimed high now for years!)

I had pride because I had made a commitment to my new goal.

Traveling to a faraway city,
for a conference on something I JUST started doing,
with people I have never met…

For me…

This was a giant leap of faith and an enormous step out of my own comfort zone.

Yet I did it. I experienced it. And I was proud of myself – because there’s nothing better than knowing you did something that was out of your comfort zone and did it well. (And there’s nothing worse than saying “what if?” when you would-a, could-a, should-a tried something!)

The Grass is Always Greener…

I learned so much in my three days away. No kids, no husband… A lofty and great goal in itself for many-a-mom. A dream in fact for many-a-mom.

Yet, as new dreams blossom, it is sometimes hard to give yourself permission to let go or find room for the older dreams. Dreams you still have. But their newness has worn off.

So here is where this dreamer struggles:

As new goals enter, do old goals become less important?
How does one find balance as one obtains new goals?
AND what does one do when there are multiple goals of similar importance?

And I struggled. Because the grass is always greener on the other side.

Because my biggest life goal was being a mother and wife. And it felt swept aside and unattended to.

NOT because my husband couldn’t handle our three squirrelly kids. NOT because I hadn’t called and texted to make sure all was well when I was absent. And certainly NOT because I felt I was a bad mother.

My other goal felt unattended to because I missed it. I missed them.

I missed their whining in the morning. I missed their snuggles in the evening. I missed their constant interruptions and their loving, attention-longing eyes.

And in returning from my conference for my NEW dream, I’ve learned 1 big lesson:

Goals, dreams… these are good to have.

But even more important is balance.

A new Dream for a Struggling Dreamer

So now I have another new dream… a new goal. To better balance my blogging AND my family time. (And once I set a goal I strive high!?!)

I stand firm that I may only post once a week on my personal blog. Want to talk with me more? Check me out on Facebook. Or hook up with me on Twitter. Because the most important goal… my most significant dream – is finding a balance.

I know dreams change. Maybe tomorrow I’ll want OUT of the house! Maybe tomorrow, I will need more “me” time. Maybe tomorrow, I may decide to do another blog post and break out of my once-a-week mold.

But for today – I dream of more time with my family… because:

You always want what you don’t have.

~

I would love to hear your thoughts! How do you work to find balance in your life?

Bloggy Boot Camp Chicago 2011

From Left to Right/Top to Bottom: 1.) “Blind Date” dinner the evening before BBCCHI with other Bloggers. 2.) My 3 Children
3.) Hotel Bus to BW3’s after LONG day at BBCCHI Conference. 4.) My mom & sister who keep me company on my travels (Thank goodness!) 5.) The Women of #TTLTRIBE    6.) My sister and I in downtown Chicago for brunch before we returned back to Ohio.

~

I am linking up to Mamakat’s weekly writing prompt #4:
Write a post that begins and ends with the same sentence.

Mama’s Losin’ It

This entry was posted in Blogging and/or Writing, Motherhood. Bookmark the permalink.

26 Responses to The Unfortunate Struggles of a Dreamer…

  1. I love this! I’m so glad you went! I want to go to one next year! IN VEGAS! Care to join me? Like you I just started this blogging adventure and balance is one thing I’m trying to keep. I lose my footing every now and then, but so far I think I’m doing a good job!!
    Hopes@Staying Afloat! recently posted..Loud…Louder…Loudest!

  2. Sara says:

    I love you! I feel the same way and I have to constantly remind myself that this is a hobby…and I want it to stay that way.

    • Kate says:

      Yes! For this post I had to constantly continue to remind myself that my Wednesday morning weekly blog post deadline DIDN’T NEED to be firm. (And it wasn’t!) Because my post timeline is only mine… the world is NOT going to end if it doesn’t go up Wednesday morning.

      Sara (a.k.a. fellow “parent volunteer coordinator” :) LOL!), Thank you SO much for being my BBCCHI Conference “instigator” in so many ways. You not only convinced me to go, but located a ticket for me and kept me in “the loop” for all the before and after social outings. I really can’t thank you enough…

  3. Kim says:

    This post really struck a cord with me, because ever since I began blogging (began having an outlet that took me away from being a mom and a wife) I have worried that one day I’ll look back and regret the time I spent blogging, even writing, and wish that I had devoted those minutes and hours to my family.

    But I also have to live in the moment, and blogging and writing keep me sane, because they keep my mind engaged and give me a part of me, just me, and I need that so much. So I try not to feel guilty about the time I devote towards blogging and writing, because those two activities really make me happy.

    I have, however, learned to scale back, to stop when I know I’m spending too much time blogging and writing and not enough time with my family. It is a continual process of balancing it all. Some days, some weeks I blog or write very little, because I want to spend more time with my family or they need me to spend more time with them. And other moments I am more free to blog and write. It took me a long time to learn that balance is something that I have to keep working at!
    Kim recently posted..Silencing the Pain

    • Kate says:

      Kim, you always amaze me with how much you can blog AND blog quality content! In fact I often don’t get as much time as I would like to comment on all of your wonderful posts because you “spit them out” to quickly for me :) I WISH I could do that. I don’t think that writing comes as naturally to me as it does you. Creativity is a muscle in my brain, and the more I work that muscle, the stronger it gets – and the easier the words flow out of me. I hope some day to get more than one post up a week for this blog – but each post takes up so much time that it truly is hard for me to balance it with family time.

      Its nice to know that you and others also struggle with this. I heard a lot of similar claims from bloggers at the conference. Whatever you’re doing, keep it up – especially if you feel you can balance it! You are SO right >>> It is a continual process of balancing it all. And the balancing act never ends.

  4. Mrs catch says:

    It’s great to make goals and step out of our comfort zone. A goal is a dream with ACTION. Congrats for having the courage to do something positive towards your dream.
    Mrs catch recently posted..Uncle Willie

    • Kate says:

      Thank you! Action definitely DOES take courage! In fact it’s the same courage it takes me with each new post to hit the “publish” button in WordPress… But each time I do it – each time I step out of my comfort zone – it gets easier! Thanks for stopping by my blog.

  5. Minivan Mama
    Twitter: rockthemini
    says:

    The balancing act and achieving your goals/dreams! Still working on that one, but I guess that is what life is all about! Great post!

  6. Mrs. Jen B says:

    I’m so glad that you went and your dream of blogging was affirmed.

    I can’t lie – I’m still working on this balance thing. Thing is, I LIKE being blog-busy. I like having several sites to focus my attention on (only one of which is mine). I like taking on new projects. I’m happiest when I’m busiest.

    BUT. I’m also married. I also have a home. Oh, and a full-time job. My dad’s in the hospital, we will probably start trying for a baby again in a couple of weeks after a loss this summer, I want to finally make progress with the book I’m writing…

    EEK!

    Keep dreaming. So will I. And yes, dreams can always change. But the important part is to keep dreaming. :)
    Mrs. Jen B recently posted..It’s The Great Pumpkin, Mrs. B!

    • Kate says:

      Jen, I totally know what you mean when you say, “I LIKE being blog-busy.” I blog for another site too. I am a freelance graphic artist and also teach graphic design at the local community college. I feel like I am… you…

      This is what I am thankful for though: That everything I do: Being a mommy, being a teacher, being an artist, being a blogger, being a writer, being an employee, being a wife… I LOVE to do all of it. Can you imagine if you didn’t love what you did???

      Thanks so much for your comment and for visiting Jen!

  7. Luke says:

    Loved the post, as always! Really gives me a sense of your story and how you navigate your world. I see you very goal-oriented and driven. You really inspire me with all that you do.

    On tweak on the “A goal is the same thing as a dream. (At least it should be in my opinion.)” There is a slight difference in my mind.

    A dream is just that, a dream; it’s out there, in your mind and it may or may not be able to be a reality. A goal, however, is a dream that comes with a plan where the dream can become a reality.

    A Far-Fetched Example: I dream that I’m flying like Superman all the time, but that will remain a dream. A goal however would be to set out to design a jet pack and do all the work (schooling in physics, mechanics, and welding) to realize the dream.

    I know it’s not the point of the post and I may have derailed it by bringing this up but I see you and Adam as both dream-realizers/goal achievers. Might make a difference, might not.
    Luke recently posted..2030 Update

    • Kate says:

      I like it: “A goal is a dream that comes with a plan where the dream can become a reality.”

      Yet, in that same sentence I still like Cinderella’s song:

      A dream is a wish your heart makes
      When you’re fast asleep
      In dreams you lose your heartaches
      Whatever you wish for, you keep
      Have faith in your dreams and someday
      Your rainbow will come smiling thru
      No matter how your heart is grieving
      If you keep on believing
      the dream that you wish will come true

      Maybe a dream doesn’t have to be reality… but a means to a better reality?

      Deep thoughts… by Kate :) (Did you get that? Remember Jack Handy??? Saturday Night Live??? Deep Thoughts?) :)

      • Luke says:

        Totally LOVE Jack Handy.

        Haha, using Disney! Great stuff, liked that song and think it’s a good one. Goes right along with one of my favorite writers “And finally three things will last forever; faith, hope, and love. And the greatest of these is love.”
        Luke recently posted..2030 Update

  8. This post is amazing! And a blogger conference! I am going to see if they have those here in the UK. :) and I fully agree about dreams, they are what make us who we are.
    Stacy Redmond recently posted..Musings – Mama Kat’s Workshop (25th August 2011)

  9. Kmama says:

    I loved BBC, but like you, it put a lot of questions in my head, more so than answers. It was a lot to take in, and I have a lot of sorting out to do.

    Glad you had fun though, and it was so nice meeting you!
    Kmama recently posted..Proud Mommy Moments: Buster’s Vocab

  10. Ginny Marie
    Twitter: lemondroppie
    says:

    I just love this post! I was definitely out of my comfort zone at BBC, but I’ve always wanted to go to a blogging conference and so I made the plunge. It was worth it! I’m so glad we met.

    I also remember Jack Handy! :)
    Ginny Marie recently posted..Anatomy of a Play Date

  11. janmary, N Ireland
    Twitter: Janmary3
    says:

    I am heading to the Atlanta BBC! – From Ireland – eeek!

    (Will be there on business – my own wee wahm jewelry business – travelling to Atlanta from Ireland – eeeeeeeeek!)

    So I am taking some HUGE steps in the next few months – leaving 3 kids and husband, definitely out of my comfort zone.

    I can really identify with lots of your thoughts on balance – hope we can both find it :)

    • Kate says:

      Wow! And I thought my 4 1/2 – 5 hour drive to Chicago was FAR! :) You are going to have such a great time at the Atlanta BBC. I really loved my BBC experience. As my first conference and being a new blogger, I really think I might have been overwhelmed at the thought of more than just one day! I met loads of great people – the networking was wonderful.

      I tried to see if you were on Twitter and it looked as though you weren’t?… You should consider starting a Twitter account prior to going and then looking at the #BBCATL hashtag. I met a bunch of bloggers prior to the conference this way and was able to feel “not so alone” when I arrived because I “met” tons of friends prior to the conference via Twitter.

      Good Luck with your Jewelry Business, Your 3 children, the BBC Conference and your upcoming travels! You’ll have to stop back afterwards and let me know how it went!

      • Janmary, N Ireland
        Twitter: Janmary3
        says:

        I am on twitter (janmary3) but I don’t tend to use it much for connecting with others – I find most people I follow are on such a different time zone to me!

        Definitely going to try to meet others beforehand, and glad BBC is on a relatively small scale compared to something like BlogHer.

        Thanks for the advice – will let you know how it goes!

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