The Hopeless Dreamer

Caution: Contains rant but despite how it sounds, it is actually a positive post. It was originally intended to follow immediately after this negative post but other stuff caught up and my neighbours grabbed the headline instead. I’ve never been an optimist so all that positive thinking “look on the bright side” etc. is not going to work on me. Then again, if I get too depressed, I wouldn’t be able to function so what works better for me is to manage my negative thoughts and adjust my expectations that will allow me to co-exist peacefully with my depression without letting it affect my work.

The Hopeless Dreamer

“A million dreams are keeping me awake” (A Million Dreams, The Greatest Showman)

I am 36, single, not in a relationship. Thankfully, I no longer fall for the Hollywood romance that would have us believe that we’ll eventually find the one true love who will complete us. I can only express my deepest sympathy to those who think that their lives will only ever be complete when they find their other half. But am I laughing too early? There is more to finding love in life and movies, there are hopes and dreams. I may not be a hopeless romantic but I am a hopeless dreamer who still believe there are no dreams too big. Or is this just another Hollywood bluff? Who would be interested in the story behind a dream that didn’t come true?

The Greatest Showman

“To anyone who’s bursting with a dream
Come one! Come all! You hear the call” (Come Alive, The Greatest Showman)

The Greatest Showman is a musical film inspired by the story of P.T. Barnum, an American showman whose circus business brought him to fame. It’s a movie about embracing love, dream and diversity. I watched it a month ago with my mum. The plot was predictable but that didn’t stop me from shedding a few tears. I’m a sucker for films about making dreams come true and I was moved by the songs and performance. I came out of the cinema with a mix of emotions. On the one hand, I wanted to be inspired and motivated. On the other hand, with the things that were going on at that time, depression was looming, I was losing sight of my dream and I have had enough of this follow your dream cliché. I do believe that dreams come true but not quite the way movies often portray, I felt there’s a catch but I haven’t figured out what it was.

I started this blog 2 years ago to record my journey only to realise I haven’t made any real progress. I could blame it all on my poor executive functioning and constant fatigue. I have hoped to use this blog as a channel to communicate my dream but that was merely wishful thinking, I readjusted my expectations. A year after starting my blog, I finally began to make some friends on WP and the only thing that kept me going is the mental support from them. Other than that, I am physically on my own. Being autistic, it is not in my nature to ask for help. I wrote about this early on. Essentially, this blog is and started out as a cry for help and I’ve asked for help many times in various ways, to various people, for various stuff (not asking for money but practical advice and employment opportunities). I am not looking for a shortcut, I am just overwhelmed by the huge amount of information out there I need someone to point me in the right direction.

“Oh, damn! Suddenly you’re free to fly
It’ll take you to the other side” (The Other Side, The Greatest Showman)

We are encouraged to ask for help which is nothing to be ashamed of but what do people mean exactly by help? What if I have trouble articulating my needs? And when it becomes apparent that the person you’ve asked can’t help, that person is essentially saying only you can help youself. So much for asking! There must be some unwritten rules behind the art of seeking help I am unaware of that makes me unhelpable, even by those who are known to have helped and communicated successfully with people of diverse needs. What does that make me? Hopelessly helpless?

I know I am ranting and perhaps you’ve even detected my resentment. Call me sour grapes, it really irks me when others talk about the importance of asking for help to be followed by an example of them getting the help they needed. Don’t get me wrong, I’m happy they got the help they needed, what I’m saying is their success in getting help creates a potential bias to their statement. The same problem I have with people who recovered from a depression telling me that everyone gets depressed, you’ve just got to believe that the toughest time will pass. If this works, parenting would be so much easier given that all parents were once a child which means they should know how their child thinks and their child should trust that their parents know best but this is not the case. Let me put it another way, if you happen to be rich, please don’t tell me that a person’s happiness is not build on how much s/he has but how much s/he gives and enjoys. I don’t disagree with the statement, I just don’t find it as convincing if it comes from someone who happens to belong to the “haves”. Precisely why I’m writing this down for the record, as a reminder of the disappointment and frustration but at the same time, trying not to let it stop me from seeking help, if necessary.

Finding Ralph Waldo Emerson

“To be yourself in a world that is constantly trying to make you something else is the greatest accomplishment.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson

I wasn’t in search of a life partner, I was however hoping for a mentor who can show me the rope, just like Ralph Waldo Emerson was a mentor to Henry David Thoreau. I have twice mentioned to my boss my interest in doing research on mental health and autism. I even wrote and said I hope this is a topic he would consider looking at in the future but I received no reply or encouragement. I can understand his lack of enthusiasm, after all, our scope of research is dictated by where the funds are coming from and if no one thinks promoting the mental health of autistic individuals is a topic worth looking at, it is just something I have to do outside of work. I don’t know whether employees are valued or merely someone who is easily replaceable in the eyes of the employers, it just seems to me that people in position of authority are not interested in helping others develop their career and potentials, or perhaps I just have to accept that I’m a person of no talent. I think I found the ‘catch’. The Hollywood myth is not that dreams come true, that I do believe. The myth is that there is a P.T. Barnum (played by Hugh Jackman) in everyone’s life, someone who will show up, see the potential (uniqueness) in you and help make dreams come true.

Saving myself

“What’s waited till tomorrow starts tonight” (From Now On, The Greatest Showman)

I’m feeling slightly better. The truth is I never was a happy person, it is easier for me to attune to the mind of the depressed and I just needed some time to adjust. I love the Greatest Showman but I won’t be taken in by the Hollywood myth again. I don’t sing, I don’t do stunts, I don’t have an act, I’m no Zac Efron and Hugh Jackman is not ever going to show up in my life, that I’m sure of. Don’t try to convince me otherwise because I have to stop building my hopes on others. I have only myself to count on and only I can save myself, this means start taking real steps towards my Dream Walden.

“I am brave, I am bruised, I am who I’m meant to be, this is me”(This Is Me, The Greatest Showman)

As a side note, I used to think I am incapable of feeling solidarity because of my autistic and oppositional defiant tendencies but the movie and video above made me think twice. It made me wanted to stand up, march and sing in unison, so much so I wish I could be part of the production! I’m not a football or sports fan but I like to be able to sit in a corner and cheer for the same team with everyone else. It moves me when human beings are able to put their differences aside for the sake of common good.

Featured image from imdb 

12 thoughts on “The Hopeless Dreamer

  1. WOW! That video… Yep, I’m crying…
    Oh my dear friend, I gave up on big dreams a long time ago. I’ve had so many disappointments in my life that I’ve decided to look for small triumphs. Maybe in the end it will all add up to something big…or it won’t. Meh…
    I admire you for holding onto your dream and never letting it go. I really really hope it comes true for you!💞
    I’m of the school of thought that we are where we’re supposed to be, even if we don’t like it or understand it at the time.
    You’ll always have me in your corner, cheering you on!💌🌹🎉

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I cried too. Did I ever mention my brother lives in the US? I wish I had that vision and far-sight. The environment plays a very important factor. I’m holding on because I don’t know how else to live if I resign myself to this place for the rest of my life, I’d rather end it now.
      The best thing to starting this blog is friends like you who are my mental supplements 🙂 ❤

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I didn’t know you had a brother here. Where does he live? Hopefully not a “red” state😧
        I’m sure your environment is a huge factor! You’re a wide open natural spaces person stuck in an over-populated city. Then, being autistic with the light, noise, too many people sensitivities on top… I might be homicidal in your place.
        Finding friends…no, *family* through my blog has saved my sanity (what there is of it😝) many times. I don’t even remember how I got connected to you and the rest of my WP Family. Being where I’m supposed to be I guess…😻😻💌💌🌷

        Liked by 1 person

      2. You’re probably right about us connecting through my Dearest Dude Laina.
        I thought Virginia was a red state because it’s considered part of the South (or was during the civil war) but I looked it up to be sure and actually Virginia has turned blue. 🙌👏(obviously I’m in favor of blue)
        I’ll clarify in case anyone doesn’t understand… Red states are generally conservative and vote Republican, Blue states are more liberal and vote Democrat.
        I’ve never been to the east coast. I’d like to travel the whole US. I’ve been through about half. I’d also love to see the whole world. I need to find someone with lots of money that wants a travel companion 😜

        Liked by 2 people

      3. Omg y’all! 😍😍. You two are too awesome 😘😘😘. Never in a million years did I ever think I’d have the honor of things like this being said in reference to me! Wow! Totally blushing over here 😍💓. Let’s just say, to both of you, that I’m very humbled and that the feeling is totally mutual! I can’t even express it 😘😘😘💗💟💗💟

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Truthfully, I am happier when I am single. I have no desire for a relationship (at least that’s how it’s been for the past 15 years). I am 60 now and my plans don’t include a significant other….but life has a way of playing games, so who knows what the future holds.

    Liked by 3 people

  3. Wow, what an incredible post! 😘. No worries about ranting; it’s your blog and they’re your thoughts, and no one has any right to judge! 😁. I’m a strong believer in the idea that a bit of ranting is good for the soul! 💗. I’m always up for reading–or participating in a good rant 😁❤️👍🏼

    I agree with you totally about the asking for help, too. I do believe that those who extoll its benefits have been themselves benefactors. And yes, I think this creates bias. Like “hey, it worked for me and therefore it should work for everyone!” Not exactly so. I’m with you in that I have reached out, to professionals and my closest offline peeps alike, and have ended up feeling worse than I did before trying to reach out! Gah. And honestly, if I didn’t have my partner, I would probably be single, too. Not only am I a little tough to handle sometimes, but I’m also selective and too many people out there simply don’t make enough sense! The majority of them are too much work to relate to and keep up a relationship with (I’m talking potential mates here; for me, friends–especially those on the spectrum–aren’t nearly as much work and are definitely more than worth the effort! 😁). But yeah, intimate relationships are challenging, and I had to go online to find mine. I’ll probably write a post on my miscellaneous blog (the feline-like one) about how I wrote my “ad” on a personals board and made bulleted lists (“here’s who I am. Here’s what I’m looking for. Here’s what I bring to the relationship. And, here’s what I *don’t* want lol) 😂. It’s a jungle out there, and the mate market is full of people who are both needlessly complicated and very unimpressive lol. If anything ever happened to my partner, would anyone want to form a neat little group-house with me?? 😁💗💜💙

    So yeah, obviously this post connected with me. Awesome piece! 👏🏼👏🏼👏🏼💕💕

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Dear Laina, apologies for my late reply. Thanks for understanding my bitterness, I’m all for encouraging people to seek help, my bad experience shouldn’t stop anyone from doing so, it just annoys me when people talk about it as if asking for help is the best thing they’ve ever done.
      I’m having difficulty staying motivated. “I wonder how you do it”, that’s what I was thinking when I read your last post on the feline-like blog and the list of important steps you’ve taken, I was like, “Wow, you are amazingly incredible!” I’m ashamed. What important steps have I done? None! Getting out of bed is a challenge in itself.
      I’d be interested to read about the ad you posted. Is that how you met your partner? I can’t remember …
      Thanks for commenting, my dear ❤

      Liked by 1 person

      1. No worries, my lovely! 😘😘. I’ve been late in replying lately, too. Between (ahem, at self) *motivation* (😂) and being engrossed in the Harry Potter series (my cover story, which is actually largely true lol), I haven’t been on WP nearly as much either lol 💗💗

        I agree, it’s good to seek help if you need it, and some people certainly get the help they need, which is awesome, but I think your post illustrates an important point: that sometimes, help isn’t, well, helpful 💓. Or, sometimes one might not even know what type of help to seek (I’m in that boat right now). I think it’s possible for people to get their hopes up (a natural thing) and expect that the help they seek will be successful, and it doesn’t always work out that way 😘. It should!! But it doesn’t 😔

        Hehe I *totally* hear you on the motivation thing! I was extremely self-motivated until about 9 months ago or so (going on 10 now). And it dropped off like a rock, overnight. And stayed there. I was getting a bit worn out and I was under a lot of stress and whatnot, but it hasn’t returned like I thought it would! So I’m feeling a little desperate myself. Like what’s *up* with this?? Agh!! I just wanted to let you know that you’re not alone, luv. And I don’t think it’s any kind of character flaw, either 😘

        Thank you so much, darlin, for your kind words about my feline blog 😘😘. It took some sheer determination, which is running in short supply, but there’s a kernel of it there for when I really need it. I’ll tell you a secret, though: if I don’t have to, I don’t leave the place on the couch where I sleep 😳😂💗. Seriously, I’ll spend all day and all night there, unless I have to go into the office for something, which is in the morning up to 3 days a week. I used to spend Monday through Friday, long hours, at the office! It’s been a drastic change. Like you, I have felt ashamed. I feel like I’m lazy and useless sometimes.

        BUT…neither of us should get to thinking along those lines 💗. We’re both intelligent and genuine, sweet people who care and do the world some good in our own ways, even our writing. Did you know that it was a handful of people like you, King Ben’s Grandma, Lycosa, and just a few others, who are almost singlehandedly responsible for my making it through 2017 alive? (!!). Yes, seriously, you were/are, and I wanted to know that you’re a member of a small and special tribe of peeps who probably saved my life. No kidding 😍💚💙💚😍

        So…you never know what good you may be doing someone. You don’t even necessarily have to get out of bed to make a world of difference to someone 💕💜💕

        Liked by 1 person

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 )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google 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

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.