The Danger of Dreams

The danger of dreams is that they can kill me.  Not just my body, but my soul. I can pour myself so completely into dreams that in the anguished heartbeat of final failure I cease to exist. A void. A vacuum of emptiness.

Nothing.

I’ve fallen and failed. I’ve thrown all I was into the fight to win a higher place in life and lost. In those times, I took solace in knowing I’d played my best, my loss was not from lack of effort. This gave me strength to look beyond and search for a higher goal, a bigger purpose to strive for.

Blindness was a bat to the back of the head; A surprise. that left me fear frozen on the slopes of my dreams. Unseen crevasses of doubt bewildered my mind, despair turned my breathing into gasps of high altitude anxiety. I have never felt so lost and alone.

I remembered the valley below, the cozy houses, the comforts of middle class complacency. the daily marching masses to meaningless work, forever treading water in the sea of status quo. I felt the gravity of blindness pulling me down to the coffin of conformity.

Then, in the stillness of my new blind solitude,  came the murmur of memories, ghost voices of fallen angels, heroes whose lives inspired me. Mandela. Gandhi. King. And countless quiet souls who lived their truth with silent fierceness. The night wind rose. They urged me on.

What is the real danger?  To die on a mountain of my own making, far from the solace of kindred souls, yet deep in the pure snow of my dreams, my last breath complete with knowing I’ve lived fully? Or do I stare up through the open window of life at summits unseen and fail to step out and climb again?

The real danger of dreams is not living them.

Yours to count on.

Tio Stib

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Remedies For Reluctant Romantics

Winning at the Game of Love!
Romance For Dummies…

Blind Man’s Bluff

Hiding Behind Blindness

Recently, a friend called me out. “Tio,” he taunted, “Your hiding behind your blindness. You’re using blindness as a crutch, an excuse to run away from life.”

I said nothing, but a small stirring inside told me there was truth in his words.

With the aid of time and a long walk along the waterfront, I can now admit my friend’s observation was dead on.

Having survived months of despair and suicidal thoughts, I’ve now swung over to the other extreme. Okay, I’m blind, that’s the way it is, now I simply survive the best I can and stay out of everyone else’s way. No need to be heroic. A blind man has already climbed Mt. Everest. At my point in life, no need to prove anything to anybody.

That worked for a while. I’ve enough money in the bank to live a modest, comfortable life. My wife and I don’t drive now which limits our daily distance traveled to a range of blocks instead of miles. Fortunately, most everything we want or need is available in minutes by foot. All well and good for my physical existence, but what about my spiritual self?

This is where I’ve sold myself short, chosen to hide behind blindness as an excuse to stop living my dreams. My friend, who knows that I’m not content to sit long on the river bank as others paddle by in the center of the stream challenging their dreams, threw water in my face.

It’s true. It’s easy to be blind and get special attention, to let others do things for me that I just don’t want to bother doing. It’s easy to let my wife do all the cooking because I don’t want to relearn cooking as a blind person. It’s easy to stop exercising because I don’t believe I’ll be climbing any more mountains. I’ve become complacent, overly comfortable with a small life that demands little from me. Sometimes I think I’m just waiting to die.

I sold myself a lie. I told myself that being blind now keeps me from living the my dream, building inspired teams creating better world dreams.

A blind man’s bluff.

The bigger truth is that my blindness makes me even more powerful and capable of doing such things. Why? Because blindness has forced me to do the one thing I’ve always shortchanged.

Sight free, I’m now forced to listen.

Blindness has opened my heart to hear the infinite harmonies of love. With this keen awareness I can better build the relationships to launch world changing dreams.

I’m back on the River of Life thanks to a little truth from my friend.

Yours to count on,

Tio Stib

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Remedies For Reluctant Romantics

Winning at the Game of Love!
Romance For Dummies…

Nelson Mandela, Grace and Good

Nelson Mandela, One of the great men of history, certainly the most influential man of my lifetime, passed away last week. Though I only knew him through newscasts and articles, I have always felt close to this endearing man. He felt like a grandfather to me, one whose wisdom I yearned for, whose courage and convictions inspired me.

Perhaps what struck me most about Nelson Mandela was his capacity for forgiveness. After nearly thirty years in prison, times when he was often abused and certainly discouraged, He returned to his lifelong quest for democracy in South Africa even stronger in his resolve to forgive past transgressions and forge a new government based on equality.

Such was the immensity of this man’s grace that he forgave all his former captors, past abusers, everyone who had wronged him.

He forgave them, opened his heart and invited all people to join in harmony to build a new South African democracy. And through his singular vision and commitment to grace and good, his mission was realized.

I remember those years, the early 1990’s, when South Africa was a seething mass of animosity ready to explode at any moment. I watched the newscasts of riots and violence. I thought a bloody civil war was inevitable. But Nelson Mandela did not, and ultimately his calm and reasoned approach led to South African democracy.

His leadership prevailed. Good and grace triumphed.

I shall do my best to remember Nelson Mandela and his inspiring example of the powers of love and forgiveness.

A link to  a poem read by Morgan Freeman as Nelson Mandela in the movie Invictus,

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FozhZHuAcCs

http://www.csmonitor.com/Commentary/the-monitors-view/2013/1206/Mandela-s-gift-of-grace

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Remedies For Reluctant Romantics

Winning at the Game of Love!
Romance For Dummies…