Dream A Little Dream

A gorgeous young woman, full of grace and joy and wearing a beautiful white dress, is escorted down the aisle by her Father. A handsome young man anxiously awaits her arrival, ready for the life together as a new family to begin. There is a kiss, and confetti , and a slow dance…and so much love and joy.

Fast forward, and the woman’s pregnant belly is blossoming before her, and her husband wraps his arms around it. First, a  baby boy is born, followed a few years later by his little sister. There are tears as these new lives begin, but tears of great joy and love.

They are happy. They are fulfilled. They work hard, but not too much. They enjoy spending as much time as they can together.
This is a family full of respect, joy, love and compassion…this is the dream.


I’ve had this dream since I was about 8, and actually understood to concept of ‘getting married’. The details change, but the desire to be a wife and a mother remains. My therapist tells me that it’s good to have a dream, to have a picture of the life you want – without hope, why would we get up in the morning? And so I cling to this little naive dream of the perfect family, the one I crave, the one I long for.

… … … … … …

When Matt proposed to me, I was crying. Not because it was the most magical moment ever (like I thought it would be), but because I really really wanted him to propose to me and he wouldn’t. We’d only been going out for 8 months at this point, but he’d said on our second date that he wanted to marry me, and from that moment on, all I could do was dream about becoming ‘Mrs Robinson’. WE’d had the ring for a month, and we both seemed happy and healthy…and so he asked me and I was happy and I thought ‘My dream is coming true’.

… … … … … …

It’s not easy to have a sister like mine. She is the gorgeous, compassionate, caring, loving, hard working, and incredibly intelligent woman. Oh, and she’s achieving the dream. My dream. It’s not her fault, but I am insanely jealous of her. When we were growing up, she didn’t even really want this dream – she wanted to be on mission in Africa or save the world in general. She took a bit of convincing to even go out with the wonderful, stable man who is now her husband. And now, here she is as ever…achieving. I know that it can’t all be as easy as I think it is, but at the same time I can’t see anything that’s wrong in her life. Being around her is getting much harder.

… … … … … …

Thing about dreams as that they are just that: dreams. My therapist mentioned that while dreams are good to have, it’s incredibly important to remain in reality. Currently, my reality is this: I love a man who is seriously ill. He hasn’t improved since this time last year. Everyday is hard work. He’s not going to get better unless he actually wants to – and currently, I can see no evidence of that. If he had cancer, or some other physical illness, I know my response – I would stay. I would tough it out. And people wouldn’t think I was silly for doing so.  However, because his illness is in the chemistry of his brain and how he reacts to things, people are telling me that I need to consider my options, and work out if I want to marry him out of selfishness, that I’m being silly, that he’s never going to change. Each day, I get angrier with myself and with him…and I love him. Each day, I wonder ‘what if…and I love him.’Each day, the dream slips further away…and I love him.


2 thoughts on “Dream A Little Dream

  1. So many things I want to say to you right now. (Firstly though, I’m passing on a big cyber bosom-squishing cuddle. Because you need one.)

    To my sister, my life looks perfect. I’m married, I have a stable home, I don’t have to work (even though I do run my own business). But I’ve had issues (baby-making among others) and you know that. What looks perfect from the outside is never perfect from the inside. (That would be because perfection doesn’t exist.)

    Also, I’ve had a physically sick Husband. He was diagnosed with cancer 7 months after we got married. It was hard. So very fucking hard. I was angry because why couldn’t he just GET BETTER? Why couldn’t we be like everyone else and enjoy being married? Why did we have to spend so much time around doctors and specialists and hospitals? Why was it up to me to clean up his vomit, to drive him around, to take care of everything and to spend every second of every day in a state of fear and anxiety?

    Whether the one you love is sick mentally or physically doesn’t matter – it’s just hard. The dark tunnel you’re in feels like it’s going to go on forever. But it doesn’t. Eventually there will the tiniest speck of light. Then slowly, that speck of light gets bigger and brighter.

    It will be okay. It might not get better tomorrow or the day after or the week after that. But it will get better.

    The best piece of advice I got when Husband was sick is advice I’m going to pass on right now: You can’t look after Matt if you don’t look after yourself. So look after yourself. You have to. (Also, you are allowed to – don’t let anyone or anything tell you otherwise).

    Love PW.

    PS: You’re stronger than you think.

  2. It does not do to live in dreams and forget to live – Dumbledore

    As PW says, actually NO-ONE’S life is perfect. Marriage, material success and kids don’t magically make your problems go away. In fact they magnify them. Whether or not you are married to your boy, it sounds like he has problems, and getting married or moving in together aren’t going to fix them. Only he can fix them. You can be supportive, but you can’t fix them for him.

    You have to take care of you first: like they say on planes fit your own oxygen mask before helping others. Work on you, and your stuff, and work out what’s best for you. And remember you are still really young, and there is still plenty of time for you guys to sort out your stuff. It’s a lot easier to get married and have babies once uni is over and you are working full time.

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