When I was five, I recall, I drew a picture of me as a dentist and claimed that this is what I wanted to do when I was older. I remember a picture of a smiling girl next to that familiar reclining chair in the dentist’s room.
I was lucky: we had a lovely family dentist that had been my mother’s since she had been in her early twenties and he was very welcoming when we went for our check-ups. I am thankful for this whenever I hear some of the horror stories of pain, needles, fillings and traumatic experiences, trapped in the chair. Maybe I am graced with ‘good teeth’ and at the age of 41 I’m proud to say that I’ve never had a filling and despite some erosion of enamel, my teeth are, as they say, in ‘good nick’.
I didn’t fulfill that fleeting, childhood dream of becoming a dentist, as you can probably tell. In fact I’ve had lots of dreams: playing my French horn in an international orchestra and travelling the world, being an actor, writing a book, becoming an interpreter or translator, a nurse, midwife, barrister, gym instructor… the list of varied interests and ideas goes on… Instead, I became a teacher when my daughter was three and had dreams of being able to lead a department and later, a school.
Today, I have dreams but perhaps they are more realistic. My son doesn’t want to be Harry Potter, even though he is enthralled by the magical world, for there is something magical in a dream: some are elusive, fantastical and unattainable; but others, with well-made plans and motivation to stay the course are achievable.
Last year I ran a marathon, something I’d wanted to do for over twenty years, who knows what I’ll do next? The training demanded time, but it was well worth it. Dreams can come true.