from Rachel: My Broken Dreams

How about you? Ever sing along, hoping the song (‘When You Wish Upon a Star’) might be true?

“I’ve sung the song, but I’m not sure I had any particular dreams in mind. If I did, they were probably outside of the natural order of possibilities. My favorite fantasies involve portals to other worlds: police boxes, wardrobes, rabbit holes, special books, unseen railway platforms, fairy dust, or even tornadoes.”

“God is doing me good and I’m learning to believe that more and more.”

Now, let’s change gears for a minute. What are your five greatest pleasures on this earth?

  1. Swimming – especially in Lake Erie – though the Dead Sea was super cool, too.
  2. Soaking in a Jacuzzi.
  3. Getting a massage.
  4. Playing games – with others or electronically.
  5. Eating favorite foods like sushi or chocolate.

[starred for emphasis] We just aren’t yet aware that an intimate relationship with God is our greatest pleasure.

“I have heard some of this before and half-heartedly believed there might be more joy in God than anything. I guess other things have distracted me from living in the strength of His truth. It doesn’t seem possible until we’re face-to-face (Jesus, that is – not God).”

Do you remember any of the lower dreams your heart settled for?

“Not really. Again, I don’t remember having any realistic dreams for myself. I guess I always figured I would get married and have kids and a dog, but it didn’t feel like a dream, just a plan, and I wouldn’t call it ‘settling’ – I call it ‘happy.’”

Have any of those lower dreams become your broken dreams?

“The plans definitely changed some as we waded through all of Daniel’s autism spectrum quirks over these past twenty plus years, but I wouldn’t say ‘broken,’ just ‘different.’”

[starred for emphasis] I, on the other hand, am not well acquainted with my hopes and dreams. I can’t hand you a list, and it would be painful if you asked me to make one.

Dearest Rachel –

I’ve skipped over a few more days of ‘homework’ in this book; you dropped several names on the daily entry pertaining to broken relationships with friends that I’m sure you wouldn’t want mentioned (and the book even explicitly says to avoid gossip in your answers), so I’ll skip over that. The same goes for broken relationships in your family, although that’s more because you didn’t have much material written down there – which is a good thing.

So, I moved on to this one about broken dreams and wishes. It’s curious to see the old Disney song referenced here, since I commented on it in a letter to you earlier about how, as we get older and more disillusioned with life, we find that song to be, at best, only so much organic fertilizer. Of course, you made a valiant attempt at not growing up, and as a result, likely didn’t suffer the typical frustration with the untruth within the lyrics of this song.

The fact that your fantasies tended to be unrealistic – and the fact that you were fully aware of this – probably had a great deal to do with that, as well. If your life expectations included a pleasant marriage, a child or two and a dog, I suppose you must have considered yourself quite content with your lot, by and large.

You certainly had plenty of opportunities to indulge in each of your great earthly pleasures – although I’d suspect you’d suggest you didn’t get quite enough of the first two in particular. Actually, even the fourth, you might have considered yourself shorted, despite managing to combine both electronic games with multiplayer activity in those last couple of years with the onset of the pandemic. Some things, you just never get enough of; I get it.

I do wonder what it’s like for you to be able to share in what is supposed to be the ultimate pleasure – especially since, according to Pastor Scott, you were actually asking him about certain other pleasures that, if scripture is to be understood, are no longer available over there, and why they had to be dispensed with. I wish you could tell us what it’s like. But I know that if you could, I’d try too hard to keep you over on this side, and having been over there, I doubt you’d appreciate that.

The last section you starred seems more in line with my own experience, as you’ll recall my telling you about how I never really had a dream for my life, and had a hard time living up to the image of ‘the fellow that follow[ed] a dream’ the singer from Finian’s Rainbow was looking for. But I guess I wasn’t alone in this, and in that, we may well have been (however unwittingly) that much more perfect for each other.

Would that it had lasted longer, though.

Take care, honey; remember, my love goes with you.

Published by randy@letters-to-rachel.memorial

I am Rachel's husband. Was. I'm still trying to deal with it. I probably always will be.

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