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Friday, January 18, 2013

Making a Dream Come True

Guest Blogger, Peggy Strack, is author of the contemporary novel, "A Stop in the Park", a poignant portrait of a family's struggle to rediscover their love and values amid the frenetic pace and demanding schedules of life today. 

I'm following my dreams. 

It sounds whimsical, almost magical, doesn't it? Someone who knows what she wants from life and is willing to go after it. I know I admire individuals who abandon protocols and traditions to venture off on a calling that may seem crazy or unobtainable. Most of us however, opt for safety.

Bronnie Ware, an Australian nurse who became popular when she blogged about the top five regrets of her dying patients, revealed the number one regret. You guessed it. "Letting dreams go unfulfilled." They left earth without addressing what they were truly summoned to do, or at least try.

Why do we let this happen? 

We are given the gift of a life then live it cautiously instead of spreading our wings and soaring into what fascinates us most. It may be pursuing a competitive career such as music, a physical challenge like walking the Appalachian Trail, or a humanitarian goal like working on a mission in a foreign country.

I suppose it's because we fear failure, worry about money, and don't have the time. So we go about our days frustrated because we're not doing what inspires us. Intrigued by the topic of dream neglect, I wrote a novel, A Stop in the Park, about a married couple who are following a prescription for a successful life. Michael, the husband, has a lucrative job as an attorney, which allows his wife, Jamie, a former journalist, to stay home with their two daughters. They have all the luxuries money can buy, but are miserable and on the brink of divorce.


Because they aren't following their dreams. And they're not big dreams, like being an NBA basketball player or a movie star. Michael discovers he would like to teach music to disadvantaged kids and Jamie wants to be a farmer. How can they embark on a new life when they are buried deep in obligations and debt?

Here's what Michael says when he contemplates chasing his dream:

"Maybe dream chasing is like climbing a mountain. You know, finding the trail, stepping onto it. At first you're energetic and it's easy. Then you trip over a root, face a huge boulder, or a steep incline. So you stand up after the fall, find your way around the boulder, and trudge up the vertical. Eventually, you're on top of the mountain with an expansive view of the world."

What some people who have realized their dreams have to say:

"Think like a queen. A queen is not afraid to fail. Failure is another stepping stone to greatness."     

Oprah Winfrey

"Your time is limited, so don't waste it living someone else's dream. Don't be trapped by dogma, which is living with the results of other people's thinking. Don't let the noise of others' opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They already somehow know what you truly want to become."

Steve Jobs

"I've always believed that if you put in the work, the results will come. I don't do things half-heatedly. Because I know if I do, then I can expect half-hearted results."

Michael Jordan

Here are some of their stumbling blocks, and those of others who persisted in following their dreams:

Do you have a dream? Have you stepped into it yet? If not, what is stopping you?

A Stop in the Park is available at Amazon  Learn more about Peggy at:


  1. Had to tweet this very inspirational piece. It took a long time but I'm starting to live my dream after several half hearted attempts and false starts. I'm getting there.

  2. Peggy, thanks you so much for your guest blog. There's so much inspiration in this post and in your novel, A STOP IN THE PARK.
    You say, "I suppose it's because we fear failure, worry about money, and don't have the time." - in other words, we let real life get in the way.
    Like you, I am following my dream, and am smack in the middle of facing my fears of self-publishing. This was a challenging week for me, as my e-pub file formatting went fluky numerous times--the result--more fear I'd fail, more money to fix it, buckets of extra time. More than once, I thought, this is too hard. I'm done. Thanks for reminding me, I don't want my epitaph to read, "She died with unpublished novels languishing in the drawer!"

  3. Peggy, Your post reminded me of my nephew Tom. He quit college one course short of a degree in Social Work to be a chef. Parents, aunts and uncles shook our heads -- he was so close! Now we know he made the right choice. He loves the food world, it's where he was meant to be.

    Fast forward to February 2012, when Tom learned he has a rare cancer. He is fighting hard through all the nasty chemos and other things a cancer patient endures. And he is cooking great meals for friends and family when he's feeling good. He's made me realize that you really should listen to your inner voice in the important decisions in life. Don't just do what you're "supposed to do." It challenges me to think about where I want to spend my time in the next decade. Thanks for posting on our blog.

  4. First Peggy, I think you've done a great job writing this philosophy in your wonderful book A Stop in the Park. And this post is a reminder as well, that BIG dreams are the ones that enrich our souls. Well said, well done!

  5. Thank you Peggy for that beautiful reminder. It's so easy to let the 'opinions of others drown out your inner voice'. I love the way Michael describes dream chasing in your book.

  6. Hi All,

    Great to be a guest on this wonderful bolg. I really do believe in following dreams, but it sure isn't easy. One step at a time!


  7. Mary Frances FoxJanuary 27, 2013

    Thanks, Peggy, for wonderful inspiration. There is nothing like the story of someone who has lived her dreams. That is why I love reading autobiographies of strong or famous women.

    And the wonderful paradox about following a dream is that the failures don't feel like failures, just setbacks, and every small success is a big win.

    Glad you have been guest on 4 Broad Minds

  8. Wow, Peggy. Thank you for this post. I've had two friends die young recently, and their deaths have reminded me that we don't know how much time we'll have to follow our dreams. Thanks for another reminder.