I know it’s almost a new year because I’ve been waking up in the wee s’mas with so. many. ideas. Sometimes they hold up in the light of day. Sometimes they don’t. The idea in this post could go either way. Let’s see.
As you may have read, I booted a ton of angst in 2020 and let go of a really specific dream in the process: Getting a novel on bookshelves someday. It wasn’t my only dream. It wasn’t my first dream, either. It was just a dream. And maybe I haven’t let it go forever. I’ll decide that later.
I’ve had trouble deciding on a word for 2022, but I do have a quote:
You can’t necessarily be whatever you want,
but you can keep finding things you want to be.~Mike Anthony, Life at Hamilton
In 2022, I want to consider new things to be. In fact, at the beginning of this year, I proposed to the men in my life that I was going to take these lyrics literally:
Every night I lie in bed / the brightest colors fill my head
a million dreams are keeping me awake
I think of what the world could be / a vision of the one I see
a million dreams is all it’s gonna take~Benj Pasek and Justin Paul
What if a million dreams really is all it’s going to take?
In case it’s true, I told my fam I would write down as many different dreams as I could every day until I reached a million.
I’m not so much with the math.
“A million,” they said?
Not: Did we hear you right? But: Did you calculate this?
I did not.
I have now. To write down a million dreams in one year, I would have to create over two thousand seven hundred thirty nine dreams every day. I can’t do it. “You can’t necessarily be whatever you want,” and I can’t be a person who writes that many dreams every day for one year. But I really want one million dreams. And that’s where you come in.
I made a thing for collecting dreams to multiply my efforts. It still won’t get us there (I don’t have that many readers), but I thought two things seemed true:
- How fun to have a place to go any time you want and write down a dream – a virtual wishing well – like the love locks bridges in Paris and Amsterdam where people put an actual lock on the bridge to declare their love. You can add several dreams a day! Imaginary dreams, silly dreams, possible dreams, impossible ones. Whatever you want. You don’t have to add your name, you won’t be added to an email list. No strings, here. Just dreaming.
- Since it’s anonymous (or can be), I can share our dreams on social media with the hashtag #milliondreamsproject and see if we can’t get others to play in those places.
Of course, there will be no actual counting if the dreams are all over the place like that. I can only count those that come in here. I decided I don’t care. I’m putting the notion out there and hoping it finds its own way like an idea that’s determined to be born.
Lately, I’m haunted by this idea that life is so messy and imperfect, yet something in us is capable of imagining it better. How do we imagine the best things if they don’t already exist? It’s enchanting to me that this instinct is born in us, and I want to keep it alive.
If you want to add a dream (or several thousand), you can find it any time, any day at milliondreamsproject.us. You can’t mess it up with any dream too small. We need a LOT. My first was about my kids. My second was to write a novel someone wants to publish and many want to read. I guess I haven’t given up, after all. ;)