January 4, 2016

An Anthem for all the Dreamers with Learning Difficulties.

Author's Artwork: Malvika Vazalwar (Not for re-use)

To all the Dreamers—especially those with Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD) and other learning difficulties.
~ From a successful Dreamer and a Doer in the making...


The 1,000 thoughts in your pinball machine head
that go bouncing off your rubber bumper neurons,
seldom win you points.

For your thoughts—
though they travel far and wide,
don’t have a fixed path
for you weren’t inspired
to practice twice.

What a shame most schools
don’t teach curious hard-to-please minds
to use an inborn gift right—
to stay put and pull the plunger tight
so the refusal, the ignorance, the shame—makes the gift a vice.
You are not that vice.

I know that obligation
of chasing dreams
that tugs at your being—
your need to be recognized as special, unique and creative.
Because though you forget most things
that perhaps are not even interesting enough to remember in the first place,
and though you find routine stifling and perhaps lack social skills,
I know it’s the hours of creativity you churn
that give you fulfillment and meaning.
But you are not that creativity alone.
You are not that artist alone.

I know how, only a few
can catch up with you
and they don’t quite get
what keeps you so busy
until they learn
to value your time spent
in things mostly quirky.
For while others want to hone a talent and be different—
You are born with gifts plenty,
you are born quirky,
you are born a niche.
But you are not that obligation.

I know that guilt
when in your heart you feel accomplished,
yet the outside won’t always match the inside,
and there’s no result to prove them wrong—
I know that frowning upon
I have lived in a gap I didn’t know how to fill,
when details I couldn’t finalize, I could start a lot but hardly could finish,
and when my 1,000 dreams got ahead of me
I didn’t know which reality I was approaching or what I could believe.
You are not that proving
You are not that dual life.
You are not that gap or that guilt of a gap not filled.

Spoilt stuck by options
and “pending” due to perfectionism,
you were perhaps damned for being just a dreamer
wanting to be the best—
with that fuzzy mind in your head
that knew only to work
in an artsy, dreamy, diffused mode—
scattered blown-out thoughts,
scribbled paper, cluttered desk—ah so, right-brained!
Too many open windows and the browser hangs…
you are not that scared inner voice, that harsh inner critic,
you are not that perfectionist.
And you are not that clutter.

I know that fear of committing—
when the grass on the other side always seems green
I know the thought of “I’m missing that, because I am doing this.”
Which, by the way, could be a generational hazard.
I didn’t know what focus meant, I mistook it for being kindled always,
Now I know focus is striking outward with a sharp eye, hammering on the target again and again.
Feeling the beauty of “again,” breathing in the beauty of “structure,” “organization,” “discipline”—
and yes, “routine” that supports your “quirky!”
Like three empty slots to pile up and fill with your attention as solid as bricks,
but more than that, I know can relax in the knowing that—you already are what you seek.
You are not that missing, that chasing, that seeking.
You are that striker, that brick layer, that architect with his blueprint.

I know that shame of avoidance—
the anxiety, the overwhelm triggered at the thought of finishing a task,
but when it’s the thought of deadline that kills, and not the task itself,
wondering “How you can try your best? How you can invest time learning?” can solve procrastinating!
To practice and test your dreaming muscle
so you could stretch it and dream big.
So take the performance pressure off from yourself!
No one’s watching and nobody will let you off the hook if you don’t do it as a service—to yourself.

Breathe! Let yourself off the hook!
You are not that shame.
You are not that procrastination.

I know that kick of getting the big picture in one single glance,
being able to—see patterns, sense emotions and motives and connect the dots.
That feeling of: What’s the big deal? I can do it all, I can do anything I want.

You are that shape-shifter.
You are that line to connect the dots of first-hand experience—of first-hand knowing.
That “I can” is you. Better still—you are that “I will!”

I know when others get excited about pushing their boundaries,
You kind of smirk, because for you—there’s no such box.
I know that ecstasy of living in a fantasy
where everything you think is a possibility,
I know you sometimes, or perhaps always, use it as a shield—
a bubble where you are safe, respected and loved
from anything around you that doesn’t match your stimulus.
That shield you wear—that cocoon you spin is temporary—it’s not you.
You are the butterfly—made to soar.

And now, all you may want is a calm mind with no racing thoughts,
so you don’t burn-out—
a clear estimation
between ideas that you can implement,
and those you truly don’t want to, and hence—won’t.
You don’t have to please or impress
the laughers, the stealers, the naysayers
with ideas you have or haven’t made real yet.
You are that survivor,
and you are enough.

You are owning up
to the universe saying:

My dreaming capacity is tried and tested.
Dreamers like me ought to be doers—
the world needs to see the silver lining from the cloud
brought down and transformed to gold on earth.

You are that bridge and that bringer—
You are that transformer.
You are that Doer.

You are that self-taught learner, with many teachers.
You are that arranged puzzle always expanding.
You are that masterpiece in the making.

You are that lighthouse who shows the light.
You are that recruiter, the way-shower.
You are that light.
You are the teacher of teachers, the student of students—

You are that Dreamer.
You are that Doer.
You are that Master.



An Open Letter to all Dreamers.


Author: Malvika Vazalwar

Editor: Yoli Ramazzina

Photo: Author’s own artwork.

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