My favorite singer is Elina Garanca, a Latvian opera mezzo-soprano. As part of her international work, she has learned German, English, French, Spanish and Italian. And maybe more, for all I know. Once in awhile she does show that she is not 100% fluent in English, such as when she answered a question about lifetime dreams. Her response in English was, “Too deep dreams, sometimes the awakeness of them can be painful.” She must have been thinking in one language while speaking in another.
And yet her idea comes through clearly after a moment’s thought. If we spin deep dreams, if we hope for too much, we can sometimes be disappointed that in fact the reality for which we hoped is not as good as we anticipated. It takes a degree of maturity to spin realistic dreams. The young cannot easily recognize the difference between a goal and a wish.
As a pastor who married many, many couples over the years, I remember well that in the mid 1980s a change occurred in the couples with whom I met for premarital counseling. I was careful in that counseling, meeting with each couple for 10-12 90-minute sessions. Yet the time after the mid-80s seemed less fruitful, less meaningful. The young men and women didn’t know themselves well at all and therefore could not know one another well. One result was that they were entering the marriage with a certain blindness. They were dreaming of a happy marriage but didn’t know what that meant and weren’t in a position to learn much because they simply didn’t have the fundamental self-knowledge in place.
Most troubling to me was that, after that cultural shift, the young couples didn’t even show an interest in learning and growing. It was as if they just assumed all would be well and that my warnings about marriage being a great challenge seemed silly to them. They seemed to think things would just turn out fine with no effort.
In other words, their dreams about a happy marriage weren’t grounded in reality.
Big dreams require hard work Until 1985 or so, must people understood that. Since then, few people do.
And divorce rates are shamefully high. And the pain is still very deep.