Thursday, March 17, 2011

Dreaming Big by Robin Gorman Newman

Can childhood aspirations grow into adult passions?

Mine did.

I had the pleasure this week of taking a trip down memory lane, and it reminded me of the power of childhood dreams and how they can come true if they mean enough to us.

Seth's school is hosting a parent teach-in program, where parents are invited to participate in the classroom to share an expertise.  I enthusiastically seized the opportunity and volunteered to discuss how to write a book.  And, I invited my friend Puzzle Artist Alli to join me (she and Seth are close) to discuss her work as an artist.  We presented back-to-back, and I thought it was a winning combination.  The teachers agreed.

I have lectured a lot about my books, so speaking comes pretty naturally to me.  This was the first time, though, that I was to speak about my work as a writer.

I lecture best when it's off the cuff, so I didn't plan to write any notes.  I did stop by a store for kids that sells a lot of teaching supplies, and I picked up two posters on writing that I thought would be helpful and provide some talking points.  But, beyond that, my intention was to discuss my love of writing (and reading) as a child their age (8) and how it blossomed into my becoming a published author.  I brought along books I had written and illustrated as a child, read a couple of them to the class, and passed around others.

In deciding what to bring today, it brought back a floodgate of memories.  My parents, and I, had thankfully done a good job of saving books I'd written throughout the years, and they are invaluable treasures and lnks to my past.  To see how I expressed myself then and to take note of what I chose to write about is really intriguing.

It also made me recall the preciousness of childhood.  We all grow up so quickly.  And, back in my elementary school days, sure I had homework, but other than that, my thoughts were free to wander (without to do lists racing through my head), and creating stories was high on my list.  My ideas were never-ending because I gave myself permission to think out of the box, and it happened naturally.  It's really amazing how as kids we have the ability to do that, but once adulthood kicks in, and particularly parenting, and all that comes with it on a daily basis, we have to work to  find the time and space to get in touch with our thoughts (which we sometimes censor). 

It gave me immense pleasure to leave the children in my son's class with the message that anything is possible. If you want to be a writer, and you write as often as you can, then your dream of becoming an author is viable.

As adults, we need to hang on to that philosophy. We're never too old to dream big.and reinvent ourselves or rediscover dreams we had when we were young and take the steps to putting them into action.  No matter how old you are, it feels good to pursue your passions. 

And, I for one, want to be a positive role model for my son.  If he sees me feeling fulfilled and doing things (other than parenting) that are important to me, then he'll know that, while life is a juggling act, we deserve to be gratified.

So, other than your efforts to be a good parent, what do you actively pursue (or what would you aspire to accomplish or learn or explore) that feeds your soul?  If you can't readily the question, I invite you to think back to your childhood.  The answer may then readily present itself.

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Blogger Karen du Toit said...

Challenging questions! I haven't found/identified my goals yet! Wake-up call to me!
Great post! :D (THanks!)

4:39 AM  
Blogger Cynthia Wilson James said...

"No matter how old you are, it feels good to pursue your passions." I couldn't agree more. I enjoyed reading this post!

5:46 AM  
Blogger Robin Gorman Newman said...

Thanks Karen and Cynthia. Karen --it can be challenging to be clear about your goals. With all that we do as moms, having clarity in the face of responsibility isn't the easiest. We're so good at doing for others. We have to take some time to get quiet and see what comes up for us and give ourselves permission to follow our hearts. Our passions don't have to be pipe dreams. We just have to figure out how to fit them in once we know what they are.

7:08 AM  

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