By Autumn Moon

Isn’t it interesting how a five-letter word can completely change the course of someone’s life? Or foster an intense motivation for success? Exemplify the deepest of passion? Force them to persevere although the horizon looks dark and the road is winding? 

Five letters embedded themselves in my brain years ago, but the exact time I cannot recall. These letters have remained ever since, slowly forming a word that controls my actions, my emotions and my reactions to failure. 

This simple, five letter word has planted a seed in my head that was once so small, but has grown into a plant, rooted for life. Although some days this plant seems to wither with the wind or crumple into the shadows, it stands tall when the sunlight returns. This thing that has such power over me, and many others, is called a dream.

What is a dream, really? Well, defined by Merriam Webster, it can have a variety of meanings from a series of thoughts, images or emotions which occur during sleep to something that fully satisfies a wish. In my opinion, the word dream cannot be described in such a simple manner —  its effect on human thought can not simply condense to a mere sentence.

How then, would one concisely define the word “dream?” I think it means something completely different to every single person on this planet. Last week on the subway, I looked across my seat and observed a man holding a large instrument in his hand. He appeared to be nervous and was dressed in a suit. We briefly made eye contact as he exited the train as he gave me a nervous smile. Then he was gone in a flash. 

This man could’ve been going anywhere, but it seemed to me that he had a date with destiny. In other words, I think he had a chance to grab his dream and never let it go. The hope in his eyes glistened and the twitches in his fingers as they gripped the instrument demonstrated to me the passion he had for what he was doing. 

He was not the first person I had seen whose eyes reflected a desire for something greater. I have witnessed many strangers with the same fervor.

To me, a dream is a feeling which grabs you tight and refuses to let go. It consumes you, it becomes part of you and it burns a fire so hot inside that you are compelled to act on it. The power of a dream is more powerful than anything else. If you never allow yourself to dream, you’ll never understand what it feels like to reach your goals. 

As Walt Disney once said so truthfully, “All our dreams can come true, as long as we have the courage to pursue them.” 

Dreaming takes a little bit of luck, a splash of courage and a whole lot of perseverance. I am willing to accept the possibility of failure, because on the other end of that lies the possibility of success, which, if reached, is so much sweeter when you remember the courage you scavenged to take that first leap of faith.