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Free to a Good Home – Dreams

I’ve been cleaning out my closet.

And I’m getting rid of a lot.

Of dreams.

Not because they are too big.

Not because they are too small either.

But because they aren’t right for me.

Here we are, about to begin another year. Arguably, we begin a new year every day. But we, the “civilized people of the Western World” have chosen to designate January 1 as the beginning of a New Year, and it’s as good a date as any to spend in celebration and contemplation.

(Side note: birthdays are also good. Sundays too. As are Wednesdays and anniversaries and days of no consequence whatsoever except that they are your days to do with as you choose.)

So, in this week of celebration and contemplation leading up to the magical moment when the clock is reset and time begins anew, I spent some time reviewing my dreams.

They looked a lot like my closet often looks – some spots on the rack crowded with bright colors and rich neutrals while other spots show gaps where favorite wear-so-often-they-never-make-it-back-to-the-closet pieces are supposed to be. Fancy-frillies are hung at the far end where they are seldom noticed, while walk-the-dog hoodies snuggle up to speak-to-roomfuls-of-people jackets and skirts.

I gave myself the same challenge I periodically use to clean out my closet – “If you haven’t worn it in a year, if you don’t like the way it looks on you, if it worked for that one occasion but that occasion won’t ever come again, should it be taking up space in here?”

When addressing my closet, that usually results in a storm of fabric flying from racks to boxes, shoes thudding into donation bins, belts and purses pelting down from high shelves to join them.

I’ll pause now and again, running my fingers over some beautiful thing before I reluctantly admit it just isn’t “me.” Or wiping a tear as I lay some cherished, but no longer useful, item in the to-be-donated box, remembering when I bought it, where I wore it, the emotional threads inseparable from the silk and cotton.

But the time comes – I have to let them go.

Because, really, that burnt orange shade is hideous on me.

That cocktail dress is pretty, but I don’t want to go anywhere that I would wear it.

That jacket looks good, but I’m always fussing with the sleeves.

That old thing really IS an old thing – it’s worn thin with frequent wearing and washing and no miracle will make it look good again.

When I purge my closets I let go of anything that doesn’t serve me, whether it fits me or doesn’t.

Time to do the same with my dreams.

That dream that someone else thought was perfect for me? Gone.

The one that was so bright and full of possibility, until it went through the wringer a couple of times? Gone.

The one I so wanted to believe was real, until I saw the “faux” on the label? (That’s okay for leather and fur, but NOT okay for dreams.) Gone.

All boxed up and ready for someone else to pick up and wear.

So what is left?

The true dreams. Not the dreams already come true, but the dreams that are truly mine.

Are some of them too big for me now? Sure. But I love them enough to grow into them.

Are some of them so bright and bold that I have a moment of doubt, wondering if others will judge me for choosing them? Sure. But I love how I feel when I wear them, and that is the only judgment that matters.

Are some of them a little revealing? Sure. But I have nothing to hide.

I’m keeping only the dreams that make me feel good, that make me feel like the me I like best. I’m keeping the dreams that make me feel like dancing, like running, like jumping for joy.

Everything else has to go.

Because when you choose your dreams, it isn’t about dreaming big.

It’s about dreaming true.

For you.

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  • I absolutely love this post. I have been pondering over some of my old things and dreams as well.

    “If the Dream that you Dream is in the Thought of your Thoughts then the Heart of your Heart will beat in perfect harmony to your destiny.” ~Michelle Colon-Johnson

    Happy New Year Dixie! xoxoxox ~Michelle Colon-Johnson

    • Thank you Michelle! I find that metaphors help clear my thinking and the “closet of dreams” suited (pun FULLY intended!) I love your point about harmony with destiny. Yummy stuff to ponder!

  • It never crossed my (cluttered) mind to clean the place up, clear out the old not-me-anymore dreams, those worn self-images that no longer fit the trimmer, happier me-I’m-becoming.
    Now it has: _Make room for new life._
    What bright magic you weave, Dixie, enchanting now to become Day One of my new year!

    • That may be because YOUR mind has more capacity than mine 🙂

      You laughed, I know you did! Seriously, you’ve taken this metaphor to the next logical parallel of “what does that leave room for?” New Year, New Life, New Possibilities! I’ll celebrate that with you!

  • Dixie, I love that you have dreams that you can grow into and I also hope you have some that fit. And with some room in your closet, you can always have a “shopping spree” and run your fingers over the fabrics of some beautiful new dreams to choose and wear.

    • Let’s all go shopping together? More fun than the mall!!!

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  • Mary

    What is it about hearing just the right statement at just the right time that provides such crystal clarity? Thank you, Dixie. Sincerely. Some of what you have expressed has been passed on to me by different friends over the years… but it seems the greatest mystery and fascination of all is in recognizing the very moment when our eyes see, our ears hear, our mind accepts, and our heart says “ahhhhh!” It all makes sense. Thank you. Perfect timing.

    • I love that, Mary.. “our heart says ahhhhh!” Yes, I’ve been having those ahhhmmm moments – right after the “ah ha!” moments 🙂 Thank you for sharing this!

  • Wow, what a fantastic post Dixie. I love the analogy! Every year, without fail, I go through my closet. This year I also revisited my vision board realizing some stuff just doesn’t fit there either. It felt really good to do and gave me new focus. Thank you for writing this beautiful post!

    • Vision boards, success maps, future journals… all such wonderful tools for knowing what is in the closet – and helping us see what needs to go so that we can make room for newer, brighter, truer dreams and visions! I’ve sure loved getting to share a little of your success mapping, Christie – you have some bright dreams!

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  • Sandra W.

    I usually do the cleanout of the wardrobe at least twice a year. But never have I cleaned out my dreams consciously, I think I have done it unconsciously or thru choices but then I have also beaten myself up over the dreams that have died. Marriage no 2 down the gurgler and why? Because my dreams my desires screamed at me so loudly that I have to chase them. Even though its a long held dream, been thru 2 marriages, it so wants to be fulfilled it drives me forward. So in this magical year of 2012 I am going to work on letting go of the old no longer fit not the right colour whatever was I thinking dreams and just focus on the one that drives me and see where it takes me for it sure wants me to chase it.

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  • Christina

    Wow. I must admit my stomach turned as I realized I don’t know at this minute what my true dreams are and that’s okay…revealing and good to feel around right now.

  • Sora Garrett

    just wow … another perfect timing Dixie, and I’m glad you pulled it out of your old blog closet for me to read.

  • Tracie Nichols

    Oh my yes, Dixie. “It’s about dreaming true.” So well said….

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  • I needed this! Thanks for posting!