Living in the Treehouse of My Childhood Dreams
Remember Your Childhood Dreams?
It’s easy to forget your childhood dreams as you become an adult, because your adult self doesn’t look at the world like the magical-thinking child you once were.
I had a profound realization about that thought as I was lying in bed in “my room,” an office-and-guest-room in our modest second-story flat in the 16th-century village of Ajijic in Central Mexico.
That realization took me back to my childhood. My father was a WWII ex-prisoner of war who spent 18 months in a German prison camp. He suffered from severe Post-Traumatic Stress Syndrome (PTSS) in addition to experiencing crippling pain from the wounds he received when he was literally blown out of his plane while flying a mission over Germany.
Needless to say, mine wasn’t the best home environment for a little girl to grow up in, but there were equal parts of love to match those times when Dad’s alcoholism and unpredictable rages swirled around our family like a hurricane. My mother made it her life’s work to counter the negative affects brought on by my father’s condition and my dad, when sober, did his best for us.
Out in the yard behind the house we had tree that was just tall enough to hold a small “tree fort.” It was really just a few rickety floorboards with a blanket hung on a nail for walls, but to me it was a sanctuary in the treetops. I could retreat there when things got crazy and just...dream.
I remember one evening when the my tree was in full bloom and so was my father’s rage. Snuggled amidst the cloying perfume of apricot blossoms up in my sanctuary, I watched the clouds float by in a lavender sky as the stars came out one by one. The angry drone of my father’s voice seemed far away then, as if emanating from some distant dream that had nothing to do with me.
In my treetop sanctuary I was the reigning queen, in dreams of my own making.
One of those dreams was to have a grand tree-house far away from our troubled home some day, a place where I could live and dream in peace. Of course as a skinned-kneed tomboy of nine, that seemed a reasonable wish - but by the time junior high rolled around with its tribulations and angst, I forgot all about my tree house dream.
I woke up this morning still on the bed in my office. I am used to retreating there to burn the midnight oil when I’m suffering from creativity-induced insomnia, leaving Petie to sleep in the big bed undisturbed by my clicking mouse and glowing Mac laptop screen.
I awoke to a roaring morning symphony of chattering birds and I stared out into the treetops off my second-floor terrace for a long while. As the sun came up I could see the last few stars twinkling through the skeleton of branches that dominate my terrace, and suddenly I had a profound realization.
Here I am, living in that magical tree-house of my childhood dreams. Somehow, through myriad trials and a plethora of wrong turns in life, I found that sanctuary.
I’ve often asked myself, is it too much to ask in life, to have your childhood dreams come true?
Today, in my tree house in the sky, I think not.
Today I think that in many ways we’re already living our childhood dreams - it’s how we perceive those dreams that has changed.
It’s how we allow those dreams to become larger and morph into measured accomplishments and goals, failures and successes - like moving targets that keep getting larger and further away the closer we get to reaching them.
The turbulence of my past almost destroyed me at certain times in my life, as the beliefs, thoughts and memories of the past created a level of anxiety that was crippling. But this same past also fueled a burning quest to end the war that my father’s battle implanted in my mind.
My childhood made my father’s emotional war my war within myself - and yet because of that war, I dreamed of a life of peace lived in the sanctuary of a treehouse someplace far, far away.
Because of him I spent my life searching for the answer to how to be happy, and found it.
Because of him, I found my Divine Purpose.
But it was because of me - because of my own choices and what I chose to believe was possible in spite of my father's war and my own childhood - that ultimately changed me from a wounded survivor into a passionate and powerful creator.
Today’s inspirational quote is Golden Key #10, which says:
“When We Fulfill Our Divine Purpose, We Have Learned to Define Ourselves Through Our Love of Ourselves Rather Than Through External Sources.” The 10th Golden Key reminds us that the beliefs we adopt toward ourselves, and not those that others assign to us, have the power to define us. Only when we adopt the negative beliefs of others as our own, do they have the power to destroy us. Our beliefs are our personal Constitution, and to reframe them is to make an amendment to that Constitution. Amendments are necessary to bring into the present those beliefs, rights and codes of conduct that have become outdated through the natural progression of time.
Claim a life of creative liberation!
Today, take a few moments and think back to those days of childhood, whether happy or turbulent. Think of a simple, uncomplicated dream you had, and connect the dots with how you are living, and what you are doing, today.
Close your eyes and let the images and feelins pour over your body like wet paint in the rain.
What remnant of that dream lives on, and what part of it has become disfigured and bloated by unrealistic expectations, blame and excuses, fear, remorse, anxiety - and pain?
What impact has your past and the beliefs you adopted from negative experiences from that past, had on those childhood dreams?
Make today the day that you follow one dream back, back, back, into the place of its origin. And from that place of simple beginnings, breathe life into that magical dream again!
Remember the optimistic child inside of you who believed and wished and willed that dream into existence like a campfire in the rain, even if only a shred of its original treasure remains.
That treasure is yours to do with as you wish, and you are a powerful creator. Liberate yourself from the bondage of your past and watch your dreams come true!