Still Dreaming

I grew up dreaming of the possibility of a better world. My mom worked on John F. Kennedy’s campaign as a teenager. I wasn’t born yet when Kennedy was shot, but the thought of it brings tears to my eyes.

At a time when others turned inward, my mom went on dreaming. Years ago, when plans came up to build a sewage tunnel from Boston to Cape Cod Bay, we went to the beaches and collected signatures against it. The sewage tunnel didn’t make sense to us. Why spend $3.58 billion constructing a tunnel to dump partially treated sewage farther away when that money could be spent fully treating the sewage in Boston Harbor? The tunnel would point toward Stellwagen Bank, a feeding ground for endangered whales. Even though the Cape Cod group that rose up against it gathered thousands of signatures, the tunnel was constructed.

There were so many people against it. We thought for sure we would stop it. My mom went on to fight more environmental battles, but I gave up on politics after that. I started writing articles for newspapers and magazines, hoping that every once in a while, one might make a difference. I have no idea if any of them did.

I’m still dreaming. My novel, Ocean Echoes, centers on the ocean and characters who try to make a difference. More than anything else, I hope it’s a fun adventure story. When it’s published, a percentage of any profit will go toward organizations working to protect the world’s oceans for future generations. I know groups like Oceana and The Ocean Conservancy make a difference. By supporting them, maybe I can make a difference too.

“Our most basic common link is that we all inhabit this planet. We all breathe the same air. We all cherish our children’s future. And we are all mortal.” – John F. Kennedy

Are you a dreamer? What do you dream of?

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32 thoughts on “Still Dreaming

  1. Lovely. And funny that you say you gave up politics, and began writing instead. About things that matter, which makes it politics in your own way, but of the sort you can tolerate, be proud of and not feel like you have to shower off your body at the end of the day. Happy Thanksgiving, Sheila. I look forward to reading your book.

    • Thank you and Happy Thanksgiving! 🙂 I guess I’ll still vote and sign petitions but that’s about it. It just doesn’t seem like politics create enough change. Hope you have a great holiday.

  2. Gotta keep dreaming – when I wake up the world’s mean, when I dream everyones nice to each other!
    Bar becoming stupifyingly wealthy and the process somehow not corroding your moral purpose – small ways are the only ways to push for change – articles, blogs, songs, however you can.
    Keep doing it dreamer 🙂

    • Hahah – that’s a good reason to keep dreaming! And if we all kept dreaming then we’d all be in that nice dreamworld together. I won’t give up on those dreams.

  3. Congratulations on the novel. I can get behind anything to preserve the seas/oceans of the world. People frequently ignore the fact that nature and the planet will survive, humans survival is optional and we are choosing not to continue by our own greed. Nature will be forced to continue in its current pattern to rid itself of those who would wantonly exploit it and then heal itself. Bon courage et bon chance!

    • Thank you! I agree that the world will go on happily without us. It would be nice to see it heal itself while we’re still here though. Yes, I know, I’m still dreaming. 🙂

      • Unfortunately, that is a dream. We must drive around the corner, have the latest technology… best not to get me started. 🙂

  4. It always amazes me what one person can do. Unfortunately, to really effect change single-handedly, those individuals are often labeled as difficult or boat-rockers (think Erin Brockovich). But as your anti-tunnel passion showed, sometimes even a large number of people can’t make a difference.

    Well, this was certainly a gloomy comment on my part, wasn’t it? And right before Thanksgiving. I promise I’ll do better next time. 🙂

    Happy Thanksgiving!

    • Well, I guess my post is a bit on the gloomy side so that’s what I get – talking about sewage and all that fun stuff right before Thanksgiving! I do think large groups of people can change things, especially if the groups are large enough, we just couldn’t that time. Oceana gives me hope though and it makes me feel good to sign those petitions. Hope you have a great Thanksgiving!

    • Thank you – I have no idea when it’ll be coming out but I’ll let you know. I’m trying to traditionally publish and that can be a long, slow process. I’ll keep dreaming though and hopefully it’ll be published soon! Hope you have a great Thanksgiving!

  5. I often think that if my books are successful, I will be happiest sharing the benefits with groups and causes I believe in. I wouldn’t want a million-dollar home or a garage full of expensive cars. And I could never justify spending a thousand dollars on a handbag. But being able to give more to people who’s work I believe in? Priceless.

    • Very true. I can’t help but laugh at the thought of a million dollars though! 🙂 I guess as long as we’re dreaming… But really, I just want to write. I know you feel the same way. We’re not looking to get rich doing it and we probably won’t. But it’s nice to be able to do what we love and hopefully support any causes along the way. Hope you have a great Thanksgiving!

      • Yes, I seriously doubt I would ever come close to that amount of money! But even with far less than that, I hope I’ll be able to share. 🙂

        Enjoy your Thanksgiving, too!

  6. I dream that someday people will get smarter instead of getting dumber. Sounds awful, huh? But really, look at the crap that’s on TV and how people eat it up because they don’t ask for more. Same with our government, our laws. We stopped being demanding and asking for what is right for us as a community and are more focused on ourselves than ever before. People are becoming more selfish every day, so I’m dreaming of a more altruist world. And world peace would be nice too. Now I’m really dreaming. 🙂

  7. What a wonderful dream. the ocean is one that holds us all together, it’s what joins one land to the other. so yes it needs to be protected, to be cared for. i wish you all the best with your novel.

    I tend to believe i am a dreamer. I dream of a world with compassionate people. I dream of a world with hardworking patriotic citizens. I dream of gender equality. I dream of a world without hunger or war. I try my best as an individual. But often times the world depresses me – there are so many individuals who just do not care enough – or maybe they have no other choice.
    Yet I still dream.

  8. You are a beautiful dreamer! I cherish every moment that we spent fighting for rights, including the right to dream of a healthier, more peaceful world I honor everything that you did with me and continue to do to create a better world. You are my inspiration! (Your very proud mama)

  9. I love your idea that you will give a portion of your proceeds to environmental groups. I think that’s a great idea, and not enough people (who make loads of money) do that. I am a huge dreamer, and for a long time I spent too much time dreaming and not enough “doing”. I’m better now though. I can’t wait to read your book. 🙂

    • Thanks Kate! I guess the hard part is always feeling like something should be done, while at the same time not knowing exactly what to do. So it feels good to support groups that do get things done. I had a feeling you were a dreamer too. 🙂

    • Thank you – that’s really nice of you. It will probably take a while but as long as I’m dreaming, I might as well dream that it will be published soon.

  10. You really are an inspiration!
    Looking forward eagerly to reading your book – I have developed a real appreciation of how strong your understanding of people, the sea and coast is, so I’m really looking forward to its insights. 🙂

    • Thanks Kasia! You’re an inspiration to me for writing a great book and getting it out there. The whole process is so crazy and slow and it’s too easy to give up along the way, but after revising this book for a long time I’m hoping it’s finally ready.

  11. Congratulations on your novel. JFk was great from all that I had read and heard about him. My mom told me that even in our country Ghana, everything came to a standstill, all life stood still when news of his assassination hit.

    • It is sad when you think of all he inspired all over the world. Then also when his brother was shot and Martin Luther King and John Lennon. Very sad for the dreamers of the world.

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