I guess I’m what you’d call a realist – someone who “looks at facts and past events to predict the future” the dictionary says. I very much make sure we live within our means and I don’t go dreaming of crazy exciting things to happen! I was brought up in a family where if you wanted to do something – you saved for it. Hire purchase or any loan (except for a mortgage) was an absolute no go and if you couldn’t afford it, you didn’t get it. My hubby and I are a perfect match – I keep us out of debt and he pushes me to dare to dream of things that I would never think of doing. Did I mention I’m also a homebody and would happily go 12 months of the year without leaving my local suburb? I’d also happily live in the same house for the rest of my life. I’m content. I’m happy. But I could also potentially live a fairly mundane life. Which is why I’m thankful to be married to the perfect guy. He believes, he hopes and he dreams. The glass is always half full for him and nothing is ever impossible. There are always new goals to be set, adventures to be lived and dreams to be fulfilled!
Just over a year ago we celebrated being married 20 years. Months earlier he said to me we should do something really special for it – go away just the two of us, to somewhere amazing. “How about Queenstown?” He asked. “Yeah right!” I replied. We didn’t have spare money… and I could think of many things we should do with the money if we did get it. I’m also quite practical like that. But we came up with a plan (definitely a dream I’d call it) and we began to save any extra money as we could. On the week of our anniversary we got on a plane and headed to Queenstown! It was an incredible few days travelling around Wanaka and seeing sights and places we’d never been to. We truly loved every second we were there and the whole time I was grateful for marrying a guy who would dare to dream.
This month our eldest son leaves home to live in Christchurch, where he will be studying for two years. As parents you raise your kids with the vision that one day you will unleash them into the world and you pray you’ve done an okay job – both for their sake and for the sake of those who will live with them! Even before they were born we would talk about how we would be raising kids who would one day be responsible adults and how we would always keep that goal in mind. The long term goal. People say that day comes quicker than you expect – I can’t begin to tell you how my Mama’s heart feels with the idea that our boy will no longer be with us in such a short time. But I know it’s for his best.
So – my hubby had another dream. He’d always wanted for our family to go to the Gold Coast – to experience the theme parks and have a memorable time together. In my realistic ways, I’d tried to tell him why this couldn’t happen. How most families don’t get to do this and that the first time I’d been to the Gold Coast (or Australia!) was for our honeymoon! Maybe they too could experience this exciting place for theirs one day? 😉 But no. He had a dream and last year we realised the time was ticking away, as the reality that our son could be leaving home this January hit us.
So we began to plan, to believe, to dream. To save! After 18 years of being a stay at home Mum and volunteering alongside my hubby pastoring, I began working part time for the church. We decided we’d lived on not much for 18 years, why not keep doing so and save what we could. Although, it was amazing to buy our kids shoes when they needed them or a haircut – which were previously things we would put off until “the next pay packet.” Then I needed an operation. Then it didn’t go to plan and our hope for going away in September faded. Then Pete needed an op. Then I had to have my second one. We began to wonder how this would happen… but knew we would get there eventually! After my second op in October was successful the dreaming could become a reality. We booked our tickets to the Gold Coast.
So, before our son disappears down South – we are going to live out this dream! We’ll be jumping on a plane and heading to Auz for a week of theme parks, sunshine, ridiculous heat and probably a lot of ice cream! I’ve stopped telling them how much everything will cost (they tell me that’s killing the joy!) and will just enjoy every single moment of us being together. Because sometimes we have dare to dream and make memories together. Because before you know it, your kids are grown and gone.