It’s Martin Luther King Jr. Day.
I watched yet another dream die today.
An empty room and a plug-in.
“If you’re going to do this thing Elaine, and make a go of it, what do you need?”
“I need a room and a plug-in. That’s it. Just a room and a plug-in. I can get the people to come, I know I can. If I just have a room with a plug-in, I can do this thing.”
A room was found.
$700 per month. It was just over 1000 square ft. I knew if I never made a dime, this was a room that I could afford. It really was just a room. Absolutely nothing special or unique about it. Just. A. Room. I plugged in my speaker and together with a team of girlfriends turned that room into something that felt like magic. It was our room. We painted it. We wrote dreams and quotes on the walls. We splashed rainbows and color everywhere we could. It was like the inside of my brain exploded across an empty nothing special room…I loved it.
The day I got my eviction notice felt like the end of the world. We were too loud. Of course we were. Happiness, love, friendship and joy are rarely ever quiet. I’m insistent on the volume. I won’t compromise my volume. The pulse beating out the speakers is the same pulse beating inside my chest, it’s the reason my feet can find the rhythm. It is the lion inside of me that will not be tamed.
You can’t silence a heartbeat that pounds with purpose.
You can’t turn down a soul that is counting on the melodious roar to drown out the crazy. Let me see if I can clear this up for you…I like it loud.
I cried. Lord did I cry. I beat the floor with my fists. I just knew I couldn’t create it again. It wouldn’t be the same. This was true, but also a lie.
I started over. From scratch. We repainted the walls. We rehung the letters. We laid down the floor, only this time bigger. Way. Bigger. Because the tiny room with a plug-in had worked and now we were more…
The drive by.
Everyday I drive at least 5 or 6 times past my new dream.
It’s a home.
It sits on a giant lot surrounded by two acres of grass and just behind my dream home, sits a giant workshop. A space. Really just a room. It has a plug-in and a bathrooom and I’ll be honest…right now, it’s nothing special. But if I can make it happen, it will be mine…And it will be yours. It will be a space for anyone who needs a space. A place for friendship, joy, laughter, loud music, dance, movement, gatherings, connection. It will be magic. Again. Magic again. Magic for the third time. Only this time it will be for good, and it will be for good. Home. We will be home.
It’s hard out here for a dream…
I watched another dream die today. Another business in this town is closing its doors.
There but for the grace of God go I.
It’s gotten nearly impossible to afford a dream these days. We are just a short time away from seeing many, many dreams die. Our current situation is one that can’t be sustained. I don’t know who to blame. I don’t have any answers. I can see the dead end ahead. Empty storefronts. Buildings for lease. Dreams scattered along the side of the road. People uninspired and broken down by promises that couldn’t be kept. The grand American dream.
What’s a girl to do?
I’m going to get my dream home.
We’re going to open it up to as many people and dreams as we can. We’re going to have art classes, dance parties, yoga classes, craft days, and kids programs. We’re going to grow a community garden and feed people. We’re going to have retreats that feed souls. We will have outdoor classes in the brilliant sunshine and roll freely in the fresh cut grass. We will host bible studies and game nights. We will be a beacon that cries out, “YOUR DREAM IS GOOD HERE!” We will rise…and we will shine.
And maybe it might not amount to much…
But it’s pretty incredible what can be done with a room and a plug-in.
Just ask me. ❤️