Dream On

Dream On

(originally posted 2/22/22)

“Never be in a hurry; do everything quietly and in a calm spirit. Do not lose your inner peace for anything whatsoever, even if your whole world seems upset.” —Saint Francis de Sales

Isn’t being in a hurry, and being busy almost a badge of honor these days? We seem to run on no sleep, we lean on our apps to keep track of everything, and spend most of our days looking to tomorrow. Now don’t get me wrong, I am always eager to download an app to track my sleep, my steps, my water intake, my calories, the books read… need I go on? I often wonder, do these apps bring us calm, as we hurry to reach our goals? Or do they simply bring us more anxiety?

I once heard that, “if I need an app to remind me to drink water, I need to take a hard look at my life and check my priorities!” That made me stop in my tracks. Drinking water is a basic part of life, and if I'm not able to prioritize drinking water, how the heck am I supposed to be on top of literally anything else in my life?! I realized I needed to figure out what I needed to do to adjust and walk towards a life that felt more balanced and, dare I say, calm. In order to do so, I looked to those in my life for inspiration, particularly, to my dear grandma. 

A Quest for Quiet

When I was in my early tweens, my grandma moved to a new house and I was not happy about it. She was leaving the house we had all grown up in. The house that held memories of eating Jewel-Osco frozen pizza on a blanket in front of her fireplace at night and where we chased rainbows from her sun-catcher in the kitchen in the mornings. There were links to our past, why would she want to move away from that?

Her new house was fine, but there was NOTHING familiar about it, no memories, no warmth. But to my surprise after a few years of slow and steady work it became an oasis. The lack of air conditioning suddenly didn’t bother me, because I was overwhelmed with the beauty of the pond outside the back of her house. The old creaky stairs didn’t annoy me because they were a sound you could hear because the house was so peaceful and so quiet. The drive didn’t seem so far, because the love, warmth and calm that was waiting for us in that house was always worth it. 

It Was Her Dream

It wasn’t until a few years ago that I really understood how this simple house had transformed into an oasis of calm. Owning a house on the water was a dream my grandparents had shared. Even though my grandpa passed away when I was a baby, she never let go of this dream. She pushed forward, and knew that even though it meant moving a bit farther away from family, it was going to be worth it because she was going to be a better version of herself. Her dream house overlooked a little pond, and had a hill which she tended to tirelessly; up until the age of 85. It was bliss. 

She enjoyed the process of turning this house into a home yet she never rushed and in doing so, she found a life of calm. 

Find Your Dream, and Go After It - Calmly

My grandma loved her house, she loved her family and she loved her life. Within moments of visiting with her, you could tell. There was a sense of joy and contentment that gave you a beautiful sense of calm when you were around her. 

I want people to feel accepted, loved, and calm in my presence. I’m a pretty bubbly person, so I haven’t always come across as “calm” in the past. Let’s just say I’m a work in progress. But I will say, I’m making progress. 

After quitting my full time job and going after a dream (hey there The Happy Apricot!), I started to find myself, in a full, and new way. As much as I want this business to be successful, I also want to enjoy the process. And ensuring I love the process has brought me a level of satisfaction and calm like never before. I recently threw a dinner party and in the past, I would have been sweaty and running around like crazy by the time guests arrived. Instead, I enjoyed the process of preparation, had everything ready and was able to welcome my friends into a calm home. I was present and ready to enjoy their company instead of obsessing over every detail that really didn’t matter. 

I’m learning not to rush to the finish line, but rather enjoy the journey, calmly. I am going after my dreams, just like my grandma did and so many in my life do. And in that, I'm finding contentment and peace. Every one of us has a dream. It may be completing a marathon, learning to cook, running a business or reading through all the books on Rory Gilmore’s list (IYKYK). Let’s make today the day you start making moves towards that dream. Think about your dream, write it down, and figure out the very first TINY thing you can do to start moving forward on it. I promise you, once you start the journey, you’ll find peace along the way; and in finding peace, you will find calm.

Peace friends.

Carrianne Nackers

Artist/Founder of The Happy Apricot

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