You know that sportswear ad. You know the one with the athletes doing incredible feats, people running. The one with a simple message. And the swoosh. You know the one? The images, sports, people change, but the tag line and logo are always the same. I know you know what I’m talking about.
Sometimes it is that easy as the tag line says.
Photo source: Facebook
As a little girl I had several dreams. One of them began at the age of about 11 (maybe earlier), I wanted to be a writer. The other, I am not sure when it came about, but possibly the same time; I wanted to move to Poland. I had many different motivations for this, but I think just like writing, it was a dream that chose me and not the other way around. There were times throughout my life when both dreams seemed closer or further away.
I think that little 11-year-old would be pretty proud of where I am now. I work with words every day. I live in Poland. Of course, there are still many things to accomplish, but I can say that in some part my dreams have materialized. It’s pretty neat.
Getting here took guts, but it was fairly easy. All it took was listening to my guts, my intuition, my viscera (as my favorite fashion mentor likes to say). And then I just leapt. Thinking back now, I had incredible trust that all will work out while there were thousands of possible things that could have gone wrong. Obviously, 30-something me could learn a thing or two from younger me.
But let me start at the beginning…
I had been dreaming for a long time and in May 2006, one year out of art school, I had a dream. Not in the Martin Luther King, Jr. kind of way, but in the I was asleep in my bed and had a dream kind of way. Some people may call this a nightmare. I call it a wakeup call. I dreamt of my paternal grandfather’s death. At the time, this grandfather was alive and well living in a small town in northeastern Poland. The regret I felt when I woke up for not having had spent enough time with him made me realize what I must do. Within days I purchased a plane ticket and in July I was on a plane. Very few people then knew of my intention to stay in Poland, and no one knew the why. I know how crazy acting out on a dream sounds.
Eight years later, it no longer sounds crazy. In January 2014 my paternal grandfather (the one I had dreamt about back in May 2006) passed. I had over seven years of seeing my grandfather more than I would have if I had been living in the US. He got to meet my husband and my son, who is named after him. We got to be in each other’s lives more. I wouldn’t trade that for anything. I am so glad I bought that plane ticket after that dream. Had I not I would now be regretting it.
I didn’t realize though that in realizing one dream would make attaining another one easier. When I got to Poland, I quickly got offered a job teaching English, which soon enough turned to doing translations, proofreading and editing. While I loved teaching, this really allows me the lifestyle I’d always wanted to lead. And in my spare time I’m writing. I get to hang out at cafes during the day lazily sipping coffee watching people rush to work. I get to plan my work around my life and not the other way around. And most importantly, I get to work with words, my passion.
So what’s the point of me telling you all this?
I want to tell you to listen to your gut. What is your intuition telling you to do? It won’t steer you in the wrong direction. Don’t let fear stop you from going after what you want. When you’re going in the right direction, things seem to serendipitously click. It just somehow works out.
What I am saying is completely irresponsible. It is illogical.
But what can you achieve staying safe where you are?