Fear is the enemy of total life change.
My fantasies are rich and elaborate.
They rarely come true. One did. I was a very good reporter. I led an exciting and interesting life meeting and socializing with artistic, intelligent, and amusing people.
I haven’t lived a dream in a long time. Youth is a time of hopes and dreams. Old age is a time of maturing through recognition and acceptance of limitations – in health, income, opportunities of many kinds.
As my house hunting cracks into the reality of how little there is in my price range in safe, attractive neighborhoods, fear creeps into the schism between fantasy and reality.
I have many fears: When I find a place, I won’t like it. I will remain a solitary, bookish soul and not make new friends.
My longtime friend has a grounded philosophy about all this: It’s not going to turn out the way you wish it would, there will be things you don’t like, and so you get on with life.
This is sensible, because how could any reality turn out like my fantasies? In my fantasies, I become a person different from who I am — a Bohemian muse who is catnip to men. I am at least 30 years younger in my fantasies; my shoulder and knees don’t hurt.
In my fantasies, I gaily socialize; in my reality, I am a loner, a high introvert, and I need lots of time to process everything I take in.
Hence, a four-hour house-hunting trip results in two posts for The Doberman Project and total life change.
So far, The Doberman Project includes projecting my wishes into a future that is the stuff of an intriguing novel, creating a persona based on wishful thinking, and a home that — as yet — has no counterpart in concrete reality.
This total life change also includes a lot of research into neighborhoods and Dobermans and even into what might be involved in buying a lot and installing a manufactured home upon it.
The fruitful end place of this particular meditation on the dao of a dame and a dog is that the dao is always and inevitably of mind and matter. I cannot turn off my fantasies. I can temper with them with hard research I’ve been doing.
The dao also consists of inspecting and reflecting on discouragement. The way is not always easy. It is by making our way through these times of discouragement, of keeping a faithful vision to our goals and deepest desires, that we develop character.
Perhaps one day my fantasies and reality will coincide in a total life change – a dao — in which I again live my dreams.