My Red Ladder

I once had this dream …

I was standing with my Grandmother in a garden, when suddenly a red ladder surrounded by golden light appeared beside us. We strained our necks & eyes looking up to see where it led, but the clouds enveloped the ladder at a certain height, so the destination remained a mystery. My grandmother took my hand and said, “If you climb this ladder, all of your dreams will come true.” Simple as that.

She brought my body in front of the ladder, and I put my right foot on the first step. I was going to get everything I ever wanted! But then, I remembered that I had forgotten to lock my door. I removed my foot from the ladder and ran through a garden, over a river and arrived at my home. I grabbed a key out of my pocket and locked my door, then returned to the ladder.

I put my right foot once again on the first step of the ladder. I was about to achieve all of my hopes & dreams! But then, I remembered that I had forgotten to pack a bag. I removed my foot from the ladder and ran through the garden, over a river and arrived at my home. I unlocked the door, packed up a bag consisting of a couple pairs of shoes and some changes of clothes, then ran back to the ladder.

Over and over again, I would step on that ladder but back down again, for there was always something I had “forgotten” to do or bring.

Needless to say, I never climbed up the ladder.

This dream was so symbolic for me because it represented a broad picture of my life. So many dreams I had! So many things I could do to achieve them! And yet … I found excuses, things forgotten, and reason upon reason to never pursue them. It was perhaps fear masked as other things. Or maybe it was that I didn’t believe in myself. Or it could be that I am so afraid to fail, that sometimes, I would rather just not try at all.

Writing is what I love. Writing is my passion. It is my dream, my expression, my outlet. Writing is my breath, my sight, my voice, my sound. It is all to me, writing flows through my veins.

Writing is my ladder; writing on this blog was taking my first step on that ladder. When I think about my dreams, holding a book in my hands with my words inside, always comes out on top. I want a book that will one day get dusty, a book that people sniff the pages of, a book that means something to someone. And for years, I never took one step toward that. I made excuse after excuse … I kept running back to ‘my house’ for things forgotten. And then I began this blog and finally, finally took that first step.

But now it is time for another. Now it is time for me to climb higher. It is time for me to put my manuscript together and send it in to various “maybe’s.” Why haven’t I done so already? I’m scared. I’m afraid. If I fail at this, what dreams will I have left? What if I climb that ladder, have my goals within my grasp, and then fall?

But what if I never climb it?


This post really keeps with my theme of “Regret,”since I am obviously experiencing a lot of it lately. Perhaps, though, it is turning into the fear of future regret. Maybe now I am just scared letting myself down, down the road. Which is highly unproductive, trust me I know.

I am curious, what is at the top of YOUR red ladder? Are you climbing if? Have you already? Or what is stopping you?


16 thoughts on “My Red Ladder

  1. I love the symbol of the ladder. I had started the book before the blog ( but now both are so enmeshed, in a good way. It is scary as hell to start submitting to agents and publishers, and I won’t lie the rejections can feel brutal. But I trust, in something, that it will happen, for me and for you. Thank you for this post!

  2. Teaching others who WANT to learn about infant child development and the importance of nurturing in all areas especially emotional growth, whether it be in a classroom of early childhood education students or one on one with young parents. I want to share what I know.
    I have made many excuses to not climb the “red ladder” …from fear of leaving a secure job to not feeling good enough.
    This was a wonderful post. I especially like your paragraph, “Writing is what I love……” You should frame that and put it on your wall to admire when you’re rich and famous from your book. 😉
    ….and I mean that sincerely, Miss Loony!

  3. Writing is a hard field to get into. So many talented people are trying to get their foot in the door. I’m sure they will be setbacks for you, but don’t get discouraged. Every writer has been rejected. You are a very talented writer and you will eventually realize your dreams.

  4. Awesome analogy. Don’t ever give up. You’ll never know if you can fly unless you jump. In Aug 2013 I quit my secure job after 9 years knowing I would be stuck in my hometown since my hubby and kids don’t want to leave and knowing I would never get a similar job with that pay. But it had to be done due to stress. I’m not positive where I’m headed, but is know I was meant to be an entrepreneur and I’m doing it slowly but surely by making wood signs and other home decor. Thanks for sharing this. It’s inspiring 🙂

  5. OMG!!!! I can’t begin to tell you how inspirational this was…how dead on point it was for ME!!! I was about to go to bed and not even check out the post, but I would’ve missed this motivational moment for MY LIFE! Thanks so much for sharing this with us!

  6. Pingback: My Red Ladder | that D.U.B life

  7. I drifted alone with weary wistfulness until I got cancer. Then I started a blog and have written close on 150 poems and 300 posts. For me, blogging is the dream. And singing, I posts songs I have practiced as well. A great form of therapy if one has the talent for it. Now I will tackle community singing this year. Everyone needs a kick in the ass to get started.


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