You don’t have to say the words because I can hear it in your voice.
I’m here to tell you that it’s ok and that you’re not alone. There’s others like us.
I know, things are reasonable, as you put it. You get good pay, you have good hours, a good commute and this all makes you scared to say it out loud. That it feels like there’s something bigger in life calling you from deep inside. It reminds me of a kid trying to sneak a stray puppy home in his backpack.
You can’t wait to get him back to your room so you can take him out to play but as soon as you hear footsteps you’re gonna scramble to hide him under some dirty clothes. If anybody sees you’ll say, “oh, I’m just watching him for a friend,” but we both know that’s a lie. It’s not your friends’ dog.
That’s your f*cking dog.
You found him behind the dumpster when you were scrounging around looking for rubies on the way home from school. You got down on your hands and knees and rescued that mangy mutt out of the dirt. You cleaned him up and now he looks pretty good. He’s yours and you need to take him for a walk in the light of day.
For all we know he might be a hunting dog and hunting dogs gotta run. He flashed his little puppy teeth and you swore you might have seen a fang. Hell, he could be a wolf. You don’t hide wolves in the laundry basket.
I’m here to tell you that it’s ok to have that puppy, my friend.
You might have been led to believe otherwise. You might have been told outright to stop having those thoughts. That you’ve got enough in life, that you should just recognize how fortunate you are and start showing some gratitude, not desire, shame on you.
I say to those voices, go screw.
You say things are reasonable, that sounds to me like you’re trying to convince yourself.
Something bigger isn’t about ‘doing something crazy’. You’ve got a family, responsibilities sure, but you and I both know you would never jeopardize your kids’ future. They’re going to be fine, you got them. Anyone suggesting otherwise can buzz off.
Something bigger is about digging deep and looking into your soul. This is about the responsibility to your kids that you’re not thinking of - the responsibility to show them what it looks like to go for their dreams.
I know you tell them every day, they can ‘be whatever they want’ but let me ask you something, are you sure they’re going to believe you? Just because you say it?
I don’t mean now, of course they’re going to believe you today. I mean when they’re your age. Are they going to know in their bones what going for their dreams really looks like or are they going to know what it looks like to settle for reasonable and stop there because that’s how life works?
This isn’t about magnitude, it’s about truth. It doesn’t matter if going for your dreams means starting a new company or learning a new recipe. Or going to racket ball on Tuesday nights. Maybe it’s coaching their soccer team or just leaving the office early once in a while to play with them.
Going for your dreams means listening to that little voice deep down inside that’s begging for you to do your thing and stop telling yourself that it’s the devil. Better yet, maybe it is a demon messenger from the underworld and in that case you better be damn sure you’re paying attention.
We get one shot on this rock. And this isn’t just for your kids. We all need to see what you got.
We need your contribution. You settling for reasonable is depriving us of your gifts to make this place a little bit more meaningful, a little bit more interesting, a little bit more fun. We need to see you do something surprising because there is strength in numbers and if we know we got one more on our side then it’ll give us that much more fuel for burning our own flames.
I started one before in that old trash can over there under the bridge, you can use it. Here, take these matches I got from the Ould Triangle pub, there’s a couple left. Now go take that damn puppy for a walk already and let’s light this sh!t up.