I saw that quote somewhere towards the beginning of my journey. It touched me but I wasn’t sure why nor what it truly meant. I’m not sure I do now either but it has meaning now that it didn’t before. We all live our lives with dreams. Some we know to be pipe-dreams that will never be fulfilled, others we work towards with distant hope, and others are the only reason we stay alive. Many of the things I’ve experienced over the past year I never imagined would actually occur. They were pipe-dreams, until they weren’t. For years I was home, thinking about how amazing it would be to snorkel in Belize, to walk through the jungles of Costa Rica, to Kitesurf, to see the famous old city of Cartagena, to be in a real desert, to visit Machu Picchu, to swim with seals in the Galapagos. So many of the amazing sites I previously only witnessed on TV were things I hoped, but never really expected, to be blessed enough to see, feel, smell, taste. In many ways, those dreams kept me working, kept me hopeful, even if frustrated and even at times depressed. Now, I’m crossing them off one at a time, and with each one I almost feel like I have less to live for. Each time I become more, I destroy the reason for becoming. Experiencing and uncovering the mysteries of life destroys the dream of life. Seeing the Nazca lines destroys the wonder of why they were created and how unique they are. Being in Chichenitza peels away some of the mystique of the Maya. Surfing takes away one more dream that has accompanied me all my life. The more I become the things I dreamed, the less I have to dream about. That’s how it feels. That’s a sad truth I thought I uncovered. But it’s incomplete.
Becoming doesn’t destroy dreaming, it only creates a thread that can be pulled, followed and which leads to another down the road. I’ve experienced more in the past year than most people do in a lifetime. Seen more, moved more, tasted and heard more, and yet, each fulfilled dream makes me wonder about another down the road. It’s not enough to see the Peruvian desert, I want to see the Bolivian one, the Chilean one, the Egyptian one, the Mongolian one. Each dream dies when it’s fulfilled and you’re left empty as it fades but then another sprouts up in its place, if you’re open to it. A dream can be lost in becoming, but dreaming should never die, and becoming can never die. I don’t want to stop dreaming, though I sometimes feel too tired to dream these days. It will come back. I’ll remember again when I round this corner. The dream isn’t dead. It’s only taking a short pause, giving me a chance to remember, to refuel, to recharge. At the moment, I don’t care about any desert, or forest, or historical ruin. Today, I don’t care about any of it. I’m just too tired, but fatigue fades, darkness abates and the sun always comes out, eventually. You only need to survive long enough for the rise.
Maybe the quote isn’t finished. Maybe it should be: Life is lost in dreaming, dreaming is lost in becoming, becoming is the birth of dreams.