Dreams deferred are most often dreams that never happen. Sometimes we just have to step out, take a risk, without letting anything stop us. How will we ever know what we are capable of if we don't at least try. How will we ever know what our true passions are if we don't challenge ourselves and most importantly, how will we live a life of commitment, dedication and authenticity to our creative side, if we never take that first step. The simple answer is, we won't.
These are the ideals and idea's that Liam is helping me work through these past few years. At seven years old he is already my hero for trying new things and for not letting obstacles get in his way. He is brave and he challenges himself in many ways...through sports and through the arts.
For a long time now he has been asking me for Irish Step Dancing lessons. It was a gift that I really wanted to give him but we couldn't find a place close enough to where we lived to do this for him. So for awhile, he would forget about it. Not for long though. Each time we would go to a pub or see a show that had step dancing as part of the entertainment he would start on me again. Each time I told him that as soon as we could find a place, we would send him. This year my daughter told me of a dance company coming to her work out center and they were offering Irish Step Dancing...I called and in fact they were coming, just in time for his birthday..I signed him up. There was one caveat though that I thought would throw a monkey wrench into his desire to try this dream of his.. THERE WERE NO BOYS IN THE CLASS.
So, on Liam's birthday, we gifted him the lessons. He was very excited. I did not tell him about the all girl class. On his first day, we went. Upon entering the studio he looked around and stood in the back. The girls were already dancing..three little ones. Before he knew what was happening his very lovely, Irish teacher, Miss Jackie, called Liam in like he had been going to this school for years. I swear he didn't know what hit him but jump in he did. I sort of slinked away so he couldn't see me and ask to leave. In the end, I was the one who was surprised, not Liam. At the end of this very first class he told me that he loved it and would be going back. Then I asked him about all the girls...he said, no problem.
After only three weeks of lessons for all of these sweet children, they did a little recital for a local Long Term Nursing Center. The girls were so cute in their tutus and Liam was so smart in his velvet pants, white shirt and red tie. For that special occasions his Mom got him his first pair of step dancing shoes, which he now wears each week for his lessons. Come now, with me, as we revisit that wonderful day for all these little ones who so proudly showed off their new found talent.
Not one to be left out..Jaxson sneaking in for a photo opt.
Miss Jackie...full of motion.
The holidays are now over and Liam, once again, is back to dancing. I think of him often when I'm deciding an issue, especially if it's a challenge for me. I think of his tenacity, his perseverance in never giving up until he finds a way to make things happen. Mostly I love that he is so willing to try, to accomplish dreams that most kids don't even seek. He doesn't always go on to continue year after year on one of his endeavors but he always gives it a fair shot. He took horse back riding lessons for over two years and although he doesn't ride anymore because of sports, it's still a love of his. The seed has been planted. Maybe someday he will ride again with no fear of it. The point is, he tries.
I feel like this year I want to try different things to challenge myself. Take a few different classes, work on my web-site, learning how to make changes to it, finding the light more often even if it means getting up earlier or staying out later. Writing more with passion. A craft I so love doing and of course reading is always top on my list but this year, more technical books. I'm not setting huge limits for myself...but I am opening myself up to new possibilities...I did tell you that is my word for the year, right? Some things will work and perhaps some won't but it won't be because I don't step over that line and try...
I'm going to keep following Liam's lead. He is so good for my spirit and he's also good for finding adventures.
Do you have anything you'd like to try this year? Something new and exciting...if so, make it happen...
Having the courage to take the steps we want to take is the only way we will know where we want to be...trust in yourself.