Meet Buttons!

When I grow up… – photo by Gabby Ledger

Before falling asleep the other night, my husband asked me “what do you want to be when you grow up?” I paused and thought “I am grown up” and then pondered his question – what do I want to be?

When I was younger, I wanted to be a ballerina. And, thanks to my generous parents’ support, I pursued it. I’ve been told I was pretty good. I stopped being a ballerina when I was in the sixth grade, for silly reasons really, most of which I can’t recall. But silly nonetheless. Dance became part of me.

When I was a bit older, I wanted to be a cheerleader. I practiced and practiced in front of our basement windows to perfect the best split jump I could achieve. I made cheerleading all four years of high school. Dance played a big part of my coordination.

At the same time, my friend and I started playing tennis in our neighborhood street. I took a real liking to it and that progressed to hitting tennis balls against our one-car garage door. Bang, Bang, Bang, every afternoon for… ever. I then wanted to be a tennis player. That transitioned, again thanks to my parents’ support, to tennis lessons – which progressed to tennis tournaments and lo and behold I found myself playing in the junior tennis circuit among the best of the best at the time. Dance didn’t play much of a part in tennis – but the determination, dedication, and focus that I learned in dance certainly did. I played through two knee surgeries and countless pairs of tennis shoes. I never “stopped” per se, but life and its expectations lead me away from the goal of being a professional tennis player to having a “real” job.

My “real’ job is marketing. And I am passionate about it. I love taking what others think looks easy and creating something that they don’t understand but influences so many. The challenge of business mixed with the creativity of art, influencing decisions small or large. Seeing change because of a strategy I developed, or a campaign I had a hand in creating. It’s a great feeling. There isn’t much dance in it… and often times it feels like there isn’t much teamwork in it either, but there is passion and drive. And, it’s a means of giving my dreams the opportunity to grow – I guess somewhat a replacement for my parents’ generous support of my childhood. They continue to support me in everything I do… but the responsibility part rests with me.

Dreams Can Come True. ~ photo by Sue Moore

Dreams Can Come True. ~ photo by Sue Moore

I guess looking back; I’ve always been a bit of a dreamer. So, now, when thinking about my husband’s question, I think. What do I want to be?

I know I want to ride my horse. Forever.

I want to see just how far we can go. I want to ride a Freestyle test with him and score above 60 – reaching way back into my childhood to combine two things that I love – dancing and horses. I want to get to Fourth level with him and see where we can go from there.

More than anything, I want to continue building this incredible partnership we’ve started, a partnership that I’ve never had before – teamwork, being part of a team, that’s at my core – but this partnership of two living creatures depending on each other to succeed, to accomplish what appears to some to be simple movements is the most humbling thing I’ve ever been lucky to experience.

What do I want to be? Me and Carter – a team. Dancing. Determined. Dedicated. Focused.

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