A few months ago, I shared how people who I will never know might be impacted by the words I read from my basement in the early hours before school each day. I read a health report and share words of inspiration for a radio show in the Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania area.
As a high school kid, when I dreamed of being a radio announcer, I thought I’d be doing things a little differently than what I’m doing now. I also thought that if I was on the radio, I’d be talking about baseball – especially the Yankees.
Well, in what little spare time I actually have, I’m actually living out that dream as well, albeit in a small way. I always wanted to be part of the Yankees, and through dreaming followed by tenacity, will, determination, patience, hard work, and hope, I’m doing just that.
In a small way, for me, the impossible did happen! In a small way… in a very small way…teeny tiny… I am, in a way, a baseball commentator. It’s nothing big, but, well, it’s something.
This all started because I went out on a limb and said, “Why not?” when I came across an opportunity.
Too often we find reasons why we can’t do things rather than discover the reasons why we can. I think it’s easier to say, “I can’t.” I think we get comfort in the words, “I can’t.” And I think we need to always be vigilant to never let our students fall into that trap. “I can’t” is one of the most fatal phases in the English language.
I think we can. I also think we can do more – much more than we ever thought possible.
I think we can all do almost anything we want – we just have to try. We have to seek opportunities. We have to ask. Week have to seek new avenues. We have to say “YES, I can.” In all of this, we also have to be prepared to be rejected. And then, we have to find another way to go for it again.
This is how it happened that people now listen to me talking about baseball…
Sometime last winter, there was a popular Yankees web site that indicated that they’d consider adding good writers to their team. The prerequisites weren’t much: A love and understanding of baseball along with a willingness and ability to write. I thought, “Check and… check. I can do that.” So I reached out to the editors, shared some basic biographical information, referred them to some of my writings, and hoped.
They hired me on the spot. All of a sudden, I was a baseball reporter. (Note: “Hired” is an interesting word here. I work for free. There is no compensation for any of this work.) (And that’s ok.)
I was given access to the blog, the web hosting tools, and all of a sudden, when I would write something about the Yankees, my words were being read by tens of thousands of people.
I guess what I wrote made sense because they then asked me to join their podcasts. And, it is through that medium that I am now a commentator, or at least a commenter, of sorts.
A couple of times a month, I plug my microphone and headset to my computer, I log in, and a few baseball “experts” (including me) discuss the news of the day. People subscribe to the podcasts or listen on-line. And now, I am thought of, by some people out there at least, as a baseball expert.
I’m not really on the radio, but in a way I am featured on this generation’s “radio.” More and more people get their news and their perspectives on all aspects of life through podcasts. And through that medium, some people listen to me.
Now, let’s be honest, the Yankees don’t know who I am, nor do they care about me (yet!), but in a way, I’m getting a chance to live out a childhood dream. And I am enjoying every minute of it.
There are a couple of messages here. To begin, we have to dream. We have to dream big. And, we can never stop believing in our dreams. Never. They won’t all come true. Some never will, but I believe that when we dream, we look forward to tomorrow – and that’s a big part of what life is all about.
I have so many dreams that if I live to be 400, I won’t accomplish them all. I won’t end up anywhere close.
I think one of the best gifts we can give children is to teach them to dream big. We should never put limits on people, especially not kids. We have to teach our students to dream big – and then to work for those dreams. Dreams don’t come true unless we put in the time and the effort.
The other big lesson, of course, is that we have to reach, fail, and reach again. We have to always try. We also have to know that when we strive for things, the impossible can happen. It really can. Impossible really is an illusion.
In the end, what we accomplish might not look exactly like the way we dreamed it, but that matters little. As long as we strive, and try, and reach and go for it…that’s all that matters. And sometimes, just sometimes, we actually get to taste a little of what we dreamed.
And, you know what? That’s pretty darn cool.
We should always find way to live our dreams in whatever shape they come in.