Posted by: krpooler | April 2, 2011

Diving into Your Dreams


     Whenever I think about all the times I have wished for balance in my life, I feel frustrated and even defeated. Of course, I want balance. I have always wanted balance. I want to be able to do everything I want to do. And, of course, I want to do it NOW. There , I said it. So when I read Dan Blank’s  incredible post,” Stop Looking for Balance”, I felt an instant relief. What a refreshing thought. It seemed like he wrote that post just for me. I really liked his idea that we need to rearrange our priorities to fit our goals. This always involves some sort of sacrifice,but it is important that the sacrifice doesn’t include our most important priorities. In other words, forget trying to balance everything and be willing to sacrifice lesser priorities for your main ones, your dreams.”Dive into your dreams”. He goes on to say that you have to decide how badly you want that dream. Sometimes looking for balance can actually stand in your way. So if I have a dream of publishing, I have to figure out how badly I want it  and work it in,knowing I can’t do it all. PHEW!

     As a student in Dan’s Author Platform course, I have experienced many “AHA” moments. I’m experiencing firsthand by doing  how social media will be the foundation for launching my dreams of publishing. Building a community of followers now has real meaning as I connect with fellow writers and classmates on twitter:@porteranderson,@friendgrief,@judithklinger,@rebeccabricker,@jenjhenderson,@terrytobias ,on blogs and on phone conferences,Jean Perry and Brian Fitzgerald. And, I feel like I am right on the front line of what is happening in the publishing industry i.e, I have downloaded Jane Friedman’s amazing ebook ,”The Future of Publishing:Enigma Variations.” It’s a deal for $1.99, a must-read for anyone interested in publishing. Here’s a big shout out to both Jane for writing this and Christina Katz for inspiring her to write it. Another plug for the benefits of social media. It’s like a great big group hug.

     But, the challenge remains: how to fit all this into an already busy schedule? Here’s another great post by blogger Susan Johnston of The Urban Muse on time management. Susan reviews Laura Vanderkam’s  book, 168 Hours:You Have More Time Than You Think, highlighting tips for finding time to do the things we really want to do without sacrificing priorities.

     I still love that I can stop agonizing over finding balance. Thanks Dan! I can dive into my dreams which I will do now. My Author Platform classmate Viki Noe has a terrific blog,FriendGrief which focuses on dealing with the death of a friend. Her post this week prompted this dream memory about Judy, my best friend for 20 years. Judy died of breast cancer in 1993. In 1998, as I was facing a peripheral stem cell transplant for NonHodgkin’s Lymphoma, I had the following dream:

In the Midst of Cancer, I Dare to Dream”

     The staircase is broad,yet steep.  Looking down from the landing,I see a large room filled with tables of people laughing and playing cards. I see my great uncles,Uncle Freddie, Uncle Albert, Uncle Jerry,Uncle Andy,slamming down the cards on the table and throwing their heads back in laughter as they shout out in Italian. I smile,warmed by the fond memories of our times together.

     As I turn to head up the staircase,my Nana rushes by. She is wearing a flowered cotton house dress covered by her trademark tan canvas apron. 

     “Nan.” I yell, so excited to see her again.

     But, she keeps on walking by me,without even looking.

     Why doesn’t she want to talk with me?, I ask myself.

     Deflated and puzzled, I pause before I start up the staircase. I don’t know where it leads but I know I must climb it.

     “Oh my gosh,” I stop in the middle ,”there’s Judy.” She is also in a hurry.

     “Judy.” I flag her down,waving frantically.

      She stops. Impeccably dressed  in a two-piece navy pinstripe suit, she stands straight and tall, holding on to  a clipboard. Her dazzling blue eyes pierce my gaze as she turns to look at me.

      I am spellbound.

     “I’m at home, Kathy and I’m doing fine.” she says as she starts to move away.

     Reaching out to touch her arm, I climb up the stairs behind her,

     “But,Judy,” I ask, “Judy,what about me?”

      The momentary silence suspends heavy in the air.

     Turning to me, with her hands on my shoulders,she looks me in the eye, as her words ring clear,

     “Kathy, you’re going to be fine.”

     And then,I wake up.

This is not about balance. This is about diving into a dream and running with it~

What are the dreams you want to dive into?




  1. Thanks for this – very much appreciated!

    • My pleasure,Dan. As far as I’m concerned, you hit this one out of the park. Thanks for all you do to enlighten and guide all of us!

  2. Fantastic column, Kathy (I believe it’s still OK to call these things columns, blogosphere forgive me). I, too, find the “forget balance” message pretty liberating and am doing all I can to be off-kilter and productive 24/7 — listing badly to Porter, as it were. 🙂
    Cheers and thanks for the excellent mentions of us all, too!

    • Hi Porter,
      So nice to see you here! Appreciate all the cheers. Yes, you certainly are the fearless guru of twitterville~24/7 -worth of “off-kilter productivity” 🙂
      Love it! Thanks for stopping by.

  3. What a juicy dream! I believe dreams are incredibly personal, but yours reminds me that they can have wider significance. Will you weave your understanding of it into your memoir, or let it stand on its own? Lovely.

    Thanks to for the link to Dan’s post, Jane’s book, and the others. You are a world-class linker!

  4. Thanks,Sharon. The dream played a huge role in nurturing my hope during that time so I will probably weave it into my memoir but I could expand it into a stand-alone piece as well.

    Glad you liked the links- there are so many remarkable resources to share.
    Appreciate your comments!

  5. Interesting post, Kathy. I think that, while we seek balance, we must come to realize it’s a never-ending search. Re-assessing our priorities on a regular basis might be more productive, as you’ve pointed out. What a startling, vivid dream!

  6. Yes,Deb, balance does seem like an elusive dream so I agree reassessing priorities may be a more realistic approach in maintaining productivity. The dream is still very vivid to me. It fueled my hope and kept me in the fight when I needed it the most. Thanks for stopping by!

  7. Thanks for the beautiful blog and shout out to myself and all of the writers in our AP group. Right now I am going through something like chemo, and it is really tough, so I find your posts so inspiring. Here is one of my blogs that I think you will relate to after your own challenging health issues.

    I am so grateful for the light you are shining in my darkness!

    • Hi Pat,

      I really appreciate your comments and was so taken by your beautiful post on hope. I would love for you to do a guest blog (see comments on your post):-) I am so honored and humbled to “shine light in your darkness”-Wow!
      Thanks so much for stopping by. I am grateful for your support. Hope your treatments are going well,

  8. Kathy, extremely well done. I have decided to put my back burner project on the front burner at high heat. Forget about balance. Thank you! And your dream. So beautiful. Such a blessing. I remember your friend. Christina

    • Hi Christina,

      Wow! Front burner on high- Thumbs up, my friend. Follow your passion, Can’t wait to hear more! Yes, the dream was a blessing. It nurtured my hope and propelled me forward in my healing journey.
      Thanks for stopping by.
      Write On!

  9. Kathy, one of the realities of blogging and reading blogs is that you can fall down the rabbit hole of links. It’s fun, but it sure eats away at that balance thing! I followed Dan Blank’s to one by Laura Miller called “Author, Sell Thyself”, ( and here are two paragraphs that depict my frustration exactly with the new requirement that we authors do all our own marketing:

    “With all due respect to (2 famous self-marketing authors)…I’d rather have “To Kill a Mockingbird” than any of their novels. Even though they are much better at interacting with their fans and orchestrating their careers than Harper Lee is, Lee (in my opinion, at least) is the better writer. Today’s conventional wisdom, in both traditional and indie publishing, decrees that someone like Lee might as well not bother; however good her book is, it won’t find an audience unless she’s willing and able to make hawking it at least a part-time job.

    “What this means for readers is troubling. Even if the next generation’s “To Kill a Mockingbird” gets published, the author’s inability to promote it effectively may prevent it from reaching the millions of readers who would otherwise embrace it…”

    PS Where do you find all these great links? Thanks!

    • Wow,Lynne, the “Author,Sell Thyself” quote is a sobering thought since self-marketing is no longer optional and tons of time has to be spent developing one’s “platform”, playing on twitter,facebook,blogging,forums,etc. I agree, there is an addictive component to all of this and then one has to figure out how to realistically deal with all of this in the midst of daily life. It can be exhausting.

      How do I find so many links?- I “fall down the rabbit hole”.:-) There is no balance, I just fit it all in when I can and hope it comes out in the wash. I really like the idea of not knocking myself out to try to maintain balance. As far as publishing, it’s probably like winning the lottery. You have to play to win and you keep playing till you win. And even if you don’t win, you can at least have fun trying. It reminds me of a quote I came across-” we write because we can’t help ourselves.” So I say, let’s keep writing,one day at a time. Hey, ya’ never know. Be consoled that you are not alone in your frustration.

      Write On!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s


%d bloggers like this: