Consider my single-mom friend, Stephanie, who grew up in the South and posted this on her Face Book page, “If I was rich... I'd check the kids out of school, drive to LAX, fly to New Orleans, buy all our clothes there & show my kiddos Louisiana at its best :)."
We both know that she is staying put. However, I love her “dreams are free” train of thought. I get it.
Early on in our marriage, I asked my husband what he would buy if he won the lottery. He was hesitant to answer. It was like pulling taffy to get him to share his wildest materialistic dreams. For some reason, playing out this unlikely scenario was absurdly pointless because he knew in his scientific-man-brain that it would never happen. My husband and I are quite different yet also alike; we share family values, humor, open mindedness and the love of God, power walks and Thai food. When we married, I don’t think he realized that as a child I loved pondering questions like, “If you had to lose your sight or hearing, which would you choose?”, and, “If you could fly like Superman, where would you zoom to first?”
Here lies a difference.
When I asked him, “How would you spend your 20 million dollar lottery winnings?” he went blank. I admit that it excites me to dream big. And, why not? Dreams are free. They cost nothing! Dreams bring hope and smiles and joy. And they cost nada. Free! I had to tell Ralph this (a few times) before he realized that it is okay to mentally wander into places that you know you will never physically visit. My lottery winnings? I am buying a house on Bass Lake and taking our families on an all expense paid cruise. I would donate a heap to my favorite charities and I’d purchase a home with a guest house. I would write $5,000 checks to at least ten deserving friends and buy my husband a flashy sports car within the first week. He appreciated that.
This conversation usually ends in frustration. Why? German, logical, cautious Ralph wants to save the money and keep it a secret. The Italian in me wants to share, spend and enjoy it. I love that Ralph has solid, honorable values ... however, they are not fun floating around when you are making up glacier-sized dreams. After years of asking him the lottery question, he will now go to the make-believe place where he buys his AC Cobra, cruises it around on weekends, starts a consulting business and invests like crazy. Absorbing the truth that dreams are free can open up a world of amusing possibilities and unlikely conversations.
If you could hop your family on a plane right now, where would you go? Louisana?
How are you spending your 20 million dollar lottery winnings?