Thursday, September 24, 2009

Revisting Old Dreams

“I had almost given up on the reality that living there was a real possibility.”

This was the statement that hit me in a conversation I had last night with my roommate who recently returned from a trip to Greece.

This morning I’m still thinking about that statement.

My affinity for London and European culture never died, it’s just been buried as time has passed.

The sadness that I felt boarding that American Airlines flight back to the US in July of 2003 is still crystal clear in my mind. I knew I was leaving behind an experience and a city that I had loved more than anything I had previously experienced. I wasn’t done living there and my heart was heavy that day because I knew it would probably be a long time before I was again in the UK.

In the first few months that followed returning stateside, I schemed of all the ways I could return to London. I applied for a job with the American office of my British company; I applied to American Universities with the thought that maybe I could do BUNAC again; and even applied to a few British University programs. But none of these worked out for me.

As time passed, I discovered Emerson’s Global Marketing and Communications program and applied as a compromise. I would be learning more about the field I love while working with people from other cultures - which I really missed having returned to Iowa. I would also be developing skills that could put me closer to getting a job overseas.

But after graduation, I once again got caught up in the details of daily life and I’m sad to realize that six years have passed already since I set foot on European soil. Circumstances always seem to get in the way and I also realize I let go of the dream somewhere in that time span. I had convinced myself to be practical and that moving back wasn’t a real possibility.

No other city has ever made me feel as instantly at home as London did and somewhere along the way I resigned myself to never being able to have that feeling again. But this conversation brought all those feelings flooding back and because nothing else is making me as happy here right now, when it’s time to start seriously considering my next move, it might be time to revisit that dream.


Anonymous said...

wow. this really strikes a chord with me. I feel the same way about the European love affair (with the continent, not a person) I left behind oh so many years ago. I held tight to a similar dream for so long. and then, for some reason, I started to let go. not because I wanted to, but because I felt as if it was the responsible, practical thing to do. but on second thought, I am forced to question that logic. how can bypassing your dreams ever really be considered responsible?

Amy said...

Wow, love that last line.

m2 said...

Agreed. This is a great post! I feel the same way, especially when I hear other people talking about their trips. I too gave up my dreams of going back to London because I wanted to be able to establish a career. I sometimes look back and wonder if it was the right compromise to make.

Emily's question hits the nail on the head!