Recently there was a NY Times article on the American dream. The NY Times Article emphasized that in reality the traditional American dream was a mirage or not that easy to attain, etc. I agree. But I believe the American dream has changed since the middle of last century. We all grew up hearing about the “American Dream” – it was a house in the suburbs, a white picket fence, two kids, a house, and a stead job for 30 years and maybe a stay at home wife.
To be honest, I don’t want that American dream. Never have. Never will. I had a house in the suburbs in Seattle and I felt lonely. Plus my neighbor next door had a child molester hanging out in a trailer in his backyard. Then the guy that lived in the rental house across the alley behind us tried to kill a neighbor lady and ended up with life in jail. We had a few great neighbors but after 5 years I was glad to get rid of the house. I don’t know what I was thinking to buy in an “up and coming” Seattle neighborhood.
The American dream to me is the ability to create the life you want. That is the American dream. As a young girl growing up in a rural area on a pig farm I worked outside in the fields. Sometimes I shoved manure in the pig pens. I hated it. Being a farmer’s wife was not my dream. By the time I was in my mid 20’s I had travelled all over the world and had lived in Asia for a few years. I moved to Los Angeles with the goal of becoming a fashion designer even though I had absolutely no experience doing it. Within one year I was a footwear designer at an established footwear brand. To me the American dream was to be able to move from the pig farm to hanging out in NYC during fashion week.
The American Dream is about hope and possibility. It is about creating the life you dreamed of when you were 12 years old laying in bed on the farm reading Vogue magazine.