Yesterday, I was in my living room “supervising” a project and listening to our grand piano which is a “disklavier” (which means it will play piano music for you). I had placed one of my favorite Broadway Musicals on “Les Miserables” . As I was swept away in the music I was suddenly aware that I seemed to be “looking outward” from within myself. I must admit it did seem strange for a moment (you know when you suddenly feel like you might be experiencing vertigo and you are sitting in a chair). I was observing my home environment with the eyes of someone half my age. Perhaps it was the song that was playing; “I Dreamed A Dream”, with those words about: “…voices tearing you down…”, “…days filled with endless wonder…”, “..there are dreams that cannot be…”, “….and …now life has killed the dream I dreamed…”, those are powerful phrases and in hind sight of ones life they are very revealing.
When we were young, our days were filled with endless wonder and our days were filled with dreams of how our life might be. I know I spent a lot of time staring out the classroom window wishing no longing to be somewhere else doing something infinitely more exciting that what was on the board. When I was in high school and in college, I spent a great deal of my day in rehearsal rooms practicing, on stage in rehearsals and in front of large audiences singing and performing in solos, operas, choruses, plays and vignettes which all made me enormously happy and sent my heart, soul and mind soaring and I was on a constant high when I was engaged in these activities. Although I was very, very good, life had another path for me to follow and it was not on stage, not even in community or church theater. My children used to ask me: “….Mom, please don’t really sing the National Anthem……just mouth the words…; isn’t that telling! When you have been trained for some 24 years as a professional vocalist, you tend to stand out and overwhelm those in the bleachers at a ball game when you sing.
Even now, when I am in the privacy of my car and a song comes on the radio or a CD that I am listening to, I have to open my mouth and sing. It is like asking the wind to stop blowing or the rain to stop. It is who I am at my core. I am a person enveloped in music. It is in my DNA! I had no preconceived notions of being on stage at Lincoln Center, that was never my ultimate purpose of direction. I just wanted to be appreciated and participate in the places where I could lift up others by using my voice, whether it was in my local choir at church or in a local community production of something just to give me a deposit into my deep hole for the gift I was given.
To this day, I cannot sit in a performance anywhere in the world (and believe me when I say I have sat in the great opera houses of the world and in the orchestra section of the great theaters) and see a production that I sang in, in my youth. You would have to put a pair of rolled up athletic socks in my mouth to keep my quiet. I once was at a coral production of a very famous artist in England and I had to excuse myself and go into the ladies room. To my shock there were other women in the ladies room sitting on the chairs listening and singing along with the piped in music and I just burst out laughing and they all nodded and smiled and we all knew why we were there!
OK…so do you begin to see how this “who is looking out” could play out in your own life?
What is the dream that you dreamed when you were young?
What killed it?
Is there still a hole there which has a deep longing to be filled?
Do you secretly still fantasize what be in that dream today would be like?
We all have to start somewhere. Where are you starting from?
That little girl who is looking out into your big adult world is still waiting to sing to her own music. She is waiting to win the Grand Slam. She is there waiting to ring the opening bell on Wall Street. She is there waiting to…..
This is becoming “Aware” of the dream that is within you. There are many ways in which you can start to live that dream. There are appointments for you to keep out there in your future where you can begin to make a deposit into that emptiness where fulfillment lives. You can go there and you can live the dream, perhaps not in the exact manner in which a “child’s mind” views it, but you can get a taste of it.
What is your dream?