I like to listen to NPR on the drive to work… A writer was talking about his new book. At one point the author says, “I don’t want to say don’t get too caught up in your dreams, don’t get too involved in things not real, because I think that’s where all the treasure lies. I get as caught up in imaginary things as I possibly can and stay there as long as I can”.

For some reason this immediately makes me think of dressage. I guess because the logical part of my brain understands that my concept of dressage is imaginary.  I’ve known that higher level dressage for me is mainly a pipe dream, but it kind of struck me today why I need that dream. The question that has been nagging me was why do I continue investing so much  into dressage when I know the likely hood of reaching anything past Third is next to impossible.

But I am obsessed with it. I still want that dream.

Maybe I need that dream. Getting caught up in that dream silences that horrible inner critic that only chants “you can’t”, because in my dream higher level dressage is possible.  I think I need that self-deception in my life right now.

Staying in the dream lets me pretend that I can eventually compete Grand Prix. That eventually I’ll be able to sit so elegantly that it’ll appear as if I’m doing nothing at all. And eventually I could train a horse to perform brilliant, expressive movements with just a whisper of an aid.

If you listen to the podcast with the author, he’ll go on to say that the characters in his story run into trouble because the lines of imagination and reality blur.  I think you’ll have to ask me in another 20 years whether I lost touch with reality, but I think that perception depends on which side of the line you’re looking from.

But the bigger picture is, it’s not really about dressage. The dream is about having hard work pay off. It’s about really investing yourself in something, hitting your goal, and seeing the results. Because honestly, that is the *big* dream, isn’t it? If I just work hard enough, for long enough, then I’ll earn the rewards. Whether it’s work, or dressage, or well.. who cares about anything else.. no matter what it is, the belief that hard work pays off has got to be the biggest dream there ever was.

Maybe I just shouldn’t listen to NPR before my second cup of coffee… 😉

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