Wednesday, September 12, 2007

"My Dream"

Today my son came home with a big piece of paper all folded up in his homework folder. Wondering what it was i opened it up and there were only 2 words at the top of the blank white page.

"My Dream"

When i questioned him what the paper was about, he told me it was something he didn't finish in school. When i asked why - he said he was because he didn't have a dream.

It made me really sad that comment, and as usual in parent world, I felt guilty that I had not given this boy any dreams.

BUT then i had a bit of a think.

Perhaps if you have no dreams, then you have no expectations and then perhaps life doesn't continuously disappoint you.

I have dreams - big dreams - but chances are i will be disappointed as I've been so many times before BUT then again dreams keep me moving forward - always thinking that things will definitely get better and over the next hill will be a smashing green pasture!!

But hold on - who's the pessimist who came out with the 'The grass is always greener on the other side' - yet it means it generally isn't and you shouldn't continually go chasing that greener pasture. It's really very confusing and really quite philosophical for a dumb arse such as me but interesting.

I thought of all those kids you see living their lives day to day in some of the kijiji's around my office. (Kijijis being slums or shanties that appear overnight all over Nairobi. Houses built with tin sheets and cardboard boxes and, on average, get mowed down once a month by a City Council bulldozer).

But you'd be amazed by the children who live in these places. Generally they have crusty snot dried on their faces, layers upon layers of dirty ragged clothes - even in the hot season - but their little faces are gorgeous. They smile, they laugh, they run about in puddles, they scream, they shout, they fall down and .. like so many millions of children the world over, they know no different.

They somehow seem so perfectly happy in their little existence, and without some smart arse expatriate or 'do-gooder' telling them they shouldn't be living like this, they seem to be quite content in their worlds. Yes it may be that they don't wear new clothes, new shoes or live in houses with perfectly sound brick walls - but perhaps that's it. You don't miss what you don't know about.

I'm not trying to be cynical but perhaps trying to understand a young child with no dream. It's not that i don't believe one day these kids, together with mine, will have dreams - big dreams - and i wish for all of them that they can all come true because it's a damn cruel world out there and sadly one day it'll dawn on each one of them in it's own way.

But when you're 7 years old and live in an oblivious existence of that world - it must be such a wonderful place.

My dream is that i could remember being 7 and remember being in that place!

No comments: