Every now and then, I get the urge (and the time) to dream. Sometimes it’s a small dream, like, “wouldn’t it be nice to have a huge chocolate sundae?” Sometimes it’s a little bigger and involves finding just the right job or place to live. Every now and then I allow myself the luxury of drifting off the cliff of dreams, into the “Yeah, it’ll never happen but it’s nice to think about” realm. While I’m there, I travel.
I’ve been planning the “Road Trip” in my mind for over five years. The basic premise is that Josh and I would take off in a motor home and travel the United States for a year (or more) spreading awareness of Down syndrome.
The dream started when I was trying to think of a research project for my PhD in disability studies. I wanted to interview parents of adults who have Down syndrome and create a huge scrapbook of sorts with all of their stories.
Since I never quite got that far, the dream has been tucked away in the recesses of my brain – never quite going away. It just nags at me occasionally until I bring it out, dust it off, and add a few more details to it.
Over the past nine months I’ve gotten to know some pretty amazing people online through The Road We’ve Shared. Because of this, I’ve added quite a few more “stops” to the itinerary: Mardra’s in Nebraska, and Karen’s in Massachusetts, so they’re a MUST!
But, in addition to the social opportunities, there’s real work to be done! Every time I add a new business to the list of entrepreneurs who have Down syndrome, that’s another stop! Imagine if I could compile a video record of all that creativity and hard work! Then there’s the teacher in me who wants to have educational information from Josh’s point of view – Josh visits the national parks, for instance, as a 321 eLearning course for kids in schools! We could tour the adult Down syndrome clinics and meet some of the researchers who are working on Down syndrome.
The National Down syndrome Congress Conference
The International Down syndrome Coalition meet-ups
The National Down syndrome Society Buddy Walk in Times Square
ALL the local groups, Buddy Walks, and events!
List goes on and on!
But, the part Josh likes to talk about is the “rockstar part” – he wants to meet World Wrestling Federation superstars, go to music concerts, spend a day at Disneyland, and meet Becky from Glee and DeOndra Dixon and her brother Jamie Foxx. He wants to have a tour bus and be on television because, after all, he IS a star.
Yes, it’s a BIG dream.
Whenever I get super excited and busy with the planning, I forget myself and end up talking about it out loud. I usually get the same response: “It sounds great, but where are you going to get the money?” (or something worse)
That’s when my fall off the cliff ends. I can usually jump around in the clouds for a few days, plotting and planning, making spreadsheets and lists before I wake up. I can think of the director for the documentary, make a list of television networks that might be interested, or think of an awesome title for the book I’d eventually write about it. One time, I even planned out how to make a friendship quilt from squares collected from each of the local Down syndrome groups we met.
Dreams can be fun, and they can be the fuel that keeps us going when life gets mundane or stressful. Now that I’ve shared mine with you, feel free to add some spots to the list! Where do you think we should visit?
Oh! And if by chance you happen to know a corporate sponsor that would be interested in our dream, feel free to share that too! 😀