This Side Up

Let your dreams take off


I have flown. That’s not extraordinary. Lots of people have flown, and a good many have pilot licenses.

But I’m not talking about taking a flight some place or climbing into a cockpit to sit behind the controls of an airplane. Rather, this is imaginary flying. And don’t get confused. This is not the experience of being propelled upward on a trampoline, going airborne while hurtling downhill on skis or feeling weightless in a roller coaster.

This is realizing you can fly effortlessly.

It starts with a single step. Nothing too big or strenuous, just a simple step where you push off on the balls of your feet. You know the next step will be easier because you have the momentum from the first. A bouncing gait builds from there. People don’t seem to notice, but you know intuitively that it won’t be much longer before those ordinary steps become giant steps.

It’s simple then. A little more oomph and soon you’re not even touching the ground. I can’t say whether I’m flying like Superman, hands stretched out in front of me or that I’m walking on air. In fact, I don’t see myself at all. I’m just there, bounding through space and exhilarated. I suppose people should be surprised or at least take notice, but they don’t. I wonder if they can fly, too. And if they can fly, why don’t they?

I have this dream periodically. At first it was all so new and exciting. I wanted to see how far and how high I could go. There seemed to be no boundaries. If I could program my dreams, it would be on the top of my list. Instead, I just have to wait to fly again.

Now it’s different. It’s not that flying lost its luster or that it’s routine. I just know what’s going to happen and it’s fun to be in a place that is familiar yet filled with potential.

Stories can be like that. They can take you to places and times you never imagined.

Of course, stories are different than dreams. The written and spoken word, and let’s not forget movies, can have that dream quality but they’re more often anchored in a plot that carries you. Stories can be emotionally engaging, eliciting empathy for the characters and a range of feelings from sympathy and humor to anger. They can be entertaining and educational. They are enduring; there to be visited again.

Dreams are fleeting, escaping logic and given to us without explanation. Even if only momentary, we are participants and not simply observers.

Rarely do I find dreams, other than things we wish and plan for, which is another form of dream, make sense. It’s no wonder they have been viewed as having spiritual bearing.

Flying in our dreams is something many of us share. Perhaps that is because gravity is a universal barrier. We have been able to overcome gravity and flying has taken us to far off places while bringing us together. Flying is not a dream.

Dream flying, however, is still a part of us.

When it happens take those first steps, find that you can soar and you’ll awake feeling so much more is possible.


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