When dreams die.

When I was younger, I’d always dreamed of becoming an astronaut one day.

It made no sense, of course. But that’s why they called it a dream. It distorts our reality, disfigures our truth.

Reality was a fluid thing, those days. Malleable, willing to be shaped into whatever we wanted, whatever we asked for. We held our world there, in the cup of our hands. Our fat little fingers, delicate skin, we had power in them.

That was a long time ago.

All of it was a lie.

We never knew loss then, we had nothing to lose.

We never knew doubt and suspicion and wariness and an ever-present fear of change.

We never knew that hope- in the world, but also in ourselves-would leave us some day.

But most of all, we never knew what it would be like to stop dreaming.

They kept us in our gilded cages and told us we could fly.

It was only when we broke out that we realized we could fall too.

. . .

Time flies by, dragging us along with it. Our dreams become fragile things. They sneer, mock, shame. They speak in strange pragmatic voices, or in firm all-knowing reprimands.

They tell us it’ll never work, they tell us we’ll never work.

They die.

That’s the worst part.

They die too easily, and they die too fast.

In that single second of hesitation, just a flash of realism- we’ll never make it– there: you’ve killed it. There, it’s gone.

And our dreams, they’re immature, vengeful things. When they die, they don’t go down quietly. They suck out all the hope from you, all the joy, everything that once made you human, everything that kept you living.

Not just alive- living. There’s a difference in that. Passive and active.

Only a dream can keep you living.

. . .

My dreams don’t come as easily these days.

They’re less outrageous, less hopeful. I dream bitter, I dream resentment.

I dream of the past.

There are worse things than death, I find. There is the empty-eyed, empty-hearted sort of life that isn’t life at all.

Days when you can no longer dream of the future, only look back, with a wistful sort of a hope.

A spectator to yourself, watching on, but never looking. Hearing, but never listening.

Passive. Stagnant. Nothing.

You can breathe and eat and sleep and your dream will still die inside you and that will kill you.

A death that leeches off you from the inside, until your body has rotted as much as your heart.

I fear this day, and I run from it.

I run because I remember the days Before, so close to losing myself, so close to disappearing.

I remember time blurring out into something inconsequential. Today folding into tomorrow, dissolving into yesterday.

I remember waking up, feeling that inevitable spark of hope, and then watching it die as I realized there was nothing to look forward to.

I remember being dead inside.

I remember this happening all of a sudden, over decades, with no trigger. Nothing made sense. It never did.

Today, you may have a purpose, a will to keep going, and it might vanish into thin air tomorrow, no warnings, no explanations.

I fear the day where I will not want to keep dreaming.

I fear the moment where I will stop and decide that it isn’t worth it.

I fear the empty-hearted, empty-eyed life that I could live, if only I closed my eyes and slept.

. . .

Photo by Johannes Plenio on Unsplash

. . .

PS In May 2019, I will be moving to a new web address. I’m shifting to a personal domain and I’m so, so excited for you to see it.

Buying my domain is giving me so much more freedom for new features, design, and I can’t wait for you to get started there.

But on the downside, all those of you who’ve subscribed to my blog here WILL NOT be notified of new posts anymore.

I’d hate for you to miss out just because I’ve shifted addresses, but WordPress doesn’t offer anything to straighten this out.

So to make sure the change is as smooth as possible, I’d be so grateful if you’d enter your email ID below so we can stay in touch.

You can opt-out any time, no hard feelings. I hate spam and I’ll only be reaching out every two weeks or so for blog updates, I promise. Thank you, again, for all your support.

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196 Comments Add yours

  1. Roland Legge says:

    Shreya, I am moved by your poem about dreams. I can relate to your poem. I agree dreams are so important. It is more challenging to hold on to dreams these days if I listen to too much news. I have signed up follow you wherever you land.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Thank you so much, Roland. I agree. It’s hard to keep dreaming but I suppose the alternative is never truly a choice.Only a consequence of neglect…

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Your words have expressed something that I am going through now… at the age of 56… when I realised the dreams that motivated me as a child and for many years after have died. I no longer believe in myself… so I want the struggle of the day to day to be over. Nothing is ever good enough for me anymore. How the hell did I get here? THANK YOU for expressing this all so well.

    Liked by 4 people

    1. Hang in there, Michael. It’s my belief that when one dream dies, there are always other ones that step forward. Dreams, after all, are the only way we know to live. We were built to live. Only we take longer to recognize new hope.
      I hope this piece allowed you to find some solace in a shared pain. I hope you find the strength to dream always and dream outrageous<3

      Liked by 4 people

  3. kbr0632 says:

    So very depressing as this is what I am going through now. I want to have hope but I am afraid I have nothing to look forward to. But..I want to try to have hope. My days are so hard…. I used to beg for death to come upon me. My boyfriend and I just broke up.I just lost my mom 6 months ago…my dad passed 2 years ago. I am alone. But..I pray to have some hope that I will not feel this way always. It’s so hard not to lose hope. Dreams die. This is so me..hate it.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. I’m so sorry. Just reading this makes my heart-ache: I can’t possibly imagine what you’re going through… the amount of courage and strength it would take to just simply survive: it dazes me. Hang in there. You’re stronger than this. You’ll get through, one day. You’ll get through because you’ve come so far, and you know you’re not going to give up now. You’re not going to stop until you’re in the light. You know that.
      Sending love your way ❤

      Liked by 1 person

    2. kbr0632 says:

      It’s so hard. Many times I obsessed all day about how I could end it. Today is an okay day although the tears are ready to flow. It’s so easy for them to flow. I am so scared of the future. I am scared of today. I have panic and major depression (where I physically feel sick) so it’s hard for me to want to be around others, but I am going to push myself…and might go see a band this weekend. My heart aches. I want my mom back. My security has been taken from me. Thank you for your words of encouragement.

      Liked by 2 people

  4. kari23m says:

    This is beautifully written. Strikes every chord

    Liked by 6 people

    1. Thank you, Karishma.

      Like

  5. The Poets Peace says:

    this is so artfully articulated i cant help but love it. Plus its relatable which makes it even better.

    Liked by 5 people

    1. Thank you, Lazarus. Delighted to hear that.<3

      Liked by 1 person

  6. JaiiiiLynn says:

    Wow, that was real… and very beautifully told. I really felt your words.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Thank you, Jai. This means a lot.<3

      Liked by 1 person

  7. mbrazfieldm says:

    greetings and love from LA
    wordslessspoken has nominated you for
    The Mystery Blogger Award!

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Thank you so much. I might not be able to put up a post to ‘formally’ accept the award, but I’m honoured to be nominated<3

      Liked by 1 person

    2. mbrazfieldm says:

      🙂 your an awesome artist

      Liked by 1 person

  8. wow! You have so many fans and such great comments, I really have nothing else to add, but I want to follow your journey and see where you go! Beautiful writing lady!

    Liked by 4 people

    1. Haha thank you! This means so much<3

      Liked by 1 person

  9. Karl says:

    Yeah, that worse place than death you describe? I’m there. It doesn’t happen overnight.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. It definitely doesn’t. But once you recognize the place you’re in, it’s my experience you get out of it the same way you leapt in: slowly, imperceptibly, one moment at a time, one belief after another. Have hope and good luck, Karl.<3

      Liked by 2 people

    2. Karl says:

      Leapt isn’t the word I’d use, but I get your point. This far down the line, hope can be rather sparse. But I have moments. I am glad I found this post.

      Liked by 2 people

  10. Wow, this is such a beautiful write up. I loved and enjoyed every bit of it. Nice one, Shreya Vikram.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. I am glad about your personalized site, Shreya, and as such I’d like, very much, to be a part of it.

      Agboire.aaron@gmail.com

      Liked by 2 people

    2. Thank you so much, Aaron. This truly means a lot<3

      Liked by 1 person

  11. Fantastic piece. The way you express yourself is amazing! I’m looking forward to reading more.

    Also, I’m honored to have you as my first follower. Thank you so much for that.

    Liked by 5 people

    1. Thank you so much, Todd.
      It was my pleasure. I’m looking forward to reading more from you as well. Good luck! ❤

      Liked by 2 people

  12. reebzcom says:

    It surely is worth the read!!!!

    Liked by 4 people

  13. <3, really reminds me of the days where I look forward to sleeping only after awaking. Thank you for this sad but true piece.

    Liked by 2 people

  14. You have such a mesmerising way with words. Its completely inspiring.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Thank you. I’m delighted to hear that<3

      Like

  15. thepensmight says:

    A very powerful, yet sad reflection. One point I will challenge, It was not all a lie, but we were schooled to no longer see the magic. We are taught that only the empirical matters, except in matters of faith. Also, I don’t think our dreams die. Some, we realize, will not become real, because that time has passed. I think we hold onto those dreams that speak to the heart of us. You may not be an astronaut, but you are still reaching toward the stars. Often, we get in our own way, or don’t do the work needed to fulfill our dreams. As Piet Hein (http://www.archimedes-lab.org/grooks.html} wrote:

    ON PROBLEMS

    Our choicest plans
    have fallen through,
    our airiest castles
    tumbled over,
    because of lines
    we neatly drew
    and later neatly
    stumbled over.

    Phil Harris ~ lifenart1@gmail.com

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I love this, Phil. It reminds me of something I was saying recently, that the point of the dream was not to become an autronaut or run for President, but the thought behind it, like power or fame. There’s a sharp difference in that and we most often don’t recognize it. And the poem was beautiful<3

      Liked by 2 people

  16. RAK says:

    Shreya Vikram

    You have a great talent.
    You are worthwhile.
    You must not give in.

    I’ve taken God out but the rest what Niebuhr wrote is true:

    Grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change,
    Courage to change the things I can,
    And wisdom to know the difference.

    Have courage, Shreya. And continue.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. This was so thoughtful of you, Ricky. Thank you. ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  17. Wow! Have you watched the documentary “Heal?” It is a pretty thorough look and how our thoughts, our inner environment, contributes to our physical responses (illness or healing). Just wondering how prolonged thinking such as this in the essay would eventually impact the health of such a thinker.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. No, I haven’t but it definitely sounds interesting, Cherise. Will give it a try. Thanks for the recommendation!<3

      Liked by 1 person

  18. This was an awesome piece of work. Thank you for sharing it. Captivated my thoughts and gave a voice to the experiences I have had. Keep on writing and keep on dreaming, you have a gift.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you. I’m so glad it resonated. ❤

      Like

  19. This is depressing and hopeful at the same time and I can totally relate. I get so excited about an idea and then I jump on setting up websites (paid for bc I’m stupid) and then they don’t quite seem right. I think you’ve visited my two main ones, Dreaming of Arabians and Pennatus Equii. Anyway, I have a friend that says, just make a decision, whether it’s right or wrong and stick with it. Also, why couldn’t you have been an astronaut? Thanks for visiting my blogs, I think you’re the only one that does. Lol

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Haha I can relate… don’t worry, it only gets better from there. And I agree: sometimes that’s all you can do. Jump in blind and go through with it the whole way. Thank you for taking time to read and share your thoughts here 🖤

      Liked by 1 person

  20. Reblogged this on Dreaming of Arabians and commented:
    We dreamers often lose confidence and consider giving up, but at the same time, it is impossible for us to exist without following our dreams. The following blog post says it much more eloquently.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you so much, Carla. This means s lot 🖤

      Liked by 1 person

  21. Anand Bose says:

    Beautiful thoughts. Anand Bose from Kerala

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you, Anand.

      Like

  22. I have found that the hardest periods in my life have always been those periods where my dreams have died.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Nothing worse…

      Liked by 1 person

  23. nerueru says:

    Sorry I’m a spam commenter. I was compelled to say I’m just through the first section and my brain is raising a full glass to toast. It is a Yes. 😭👌

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Haha thank you so much, Neru! I hope the rest of it is a yes as well XD

      Liked by 1 person

    2. nerueru says:

      You have no idea. You’ve helped me so much-you have no idea! I’m sure others must’ve commented the same. 😌 I’ll thank you at the end 😁

      Liked by 1 person

    3. Haha, delighted to hear that, Neru. Looking forward to seeing you around!<3

      Liked by 1 person

  24. vdevb7 says:

    Amazing writing. It deeply resonated with my own feelings.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much. Delighted to hear you enjoyed it<3

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you, Hamed!

      Liked by 1 person

  25. Nina says:

    So beautiful. So tragic. And so real. But despite all of the hardships, let us not stop dreaming. Stay inspired, Shreya~! I fall in love with your writing everyday. ♥

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much for this, Nina. This means the world to me. ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  26. Beautiful work! You are very talented!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you so much, Ryan!<3

      Like

  27. Cota Farms says:

    It’s eerie to have your thoughts written down by another person.

    Liked by 2 people

  28. You have such a mastery of words. This was a beautiful, sad, and relatable post.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you. Delighted to hear it resonated. 🖤

      Like

  29. Shreya, just a possibility, but if u still have access to this site after u switch, you could over time add your new site’s url and a short msg to the end of each of ur posts – just a thought! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ah I was thinking of this, but the problem is I’d be migrating WordPress subscribers to the new site so that my posts will continue to show up on the Followed sites in the Reader even if subscribers don’t get email updates. Which also means the current account will be empty…

      Liked by 1 person

    2. True, would be more a backstop to help direct folks hesitant to try the new site where, hopefully, they’d sign up fully and just become part of the new site’s group. Maybe someone on one of the big blogging sites would know something. There’s a few I’ve seen that are pretty savvy. And the WP happiness gurus didn’t have a better workaround? Like paying to have the old domain linked to the new one? My old WP site, Yoga-Adan is linked to my full name site, Felipe Adan Lerma. Well, I’m sure it’ll work out ‘cause your following & site material is so strong, but I can truly understand ur frustration! Gotta go to bed, but I’ll check around tomorrow morning & see if I see anything/one I can suggest trying for more ideas 🙂 ‘Nite 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

    3. Yes, like I plan to issue a redirect so that I don’t have empty links hanging around in the web. But that doesn’t mean I won’t miss out on the people who’ve joined me here, only that I won’t miss out on people who are accessing the site with an outdated link. Also, I won’t show up in tag search either. I’ve tried contacting the happiness engineers, and I’ve searched in the forums, but it seems like everyone who’s moving has the same problem. Which makes sense. I mean, why would WordPress want to make it easier for people to leave?

      When I first dived into it, it frustrated me, but I think it’s for the best now. Especially after seeing how the new site is going to look, I can’t imagine staying back. Plus, it makes sense to do a clean-up of sorts and only move with the readers who are connected with me.

      Thank you so much for thinking of me, Felipe! Means the world to me. ❤

      Liked by 1 person

    4. Absolutely! 🙂 I think I remember signing up for notice re ur new site but I’ll recheck or resubmit just to make sure :

      Liked by 1 person

    5. I just checked: you were already on the list. Thank you for the gesture anyhow<3

      Like

    6. Resubmitted email to you just in case 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  30. WOW 🙂 I am moved by your words

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you, Victor.

      Like

    2. Most welcome ❤️🙏✌️

      Liked by 1 person

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