Dreams start early

As a father and having worked for a number of years in children’s theatre and after-school care, children have often amazed me with the confidence they have in talking about what they are going to be when they grow up. They never say “What I would like to be if this happens or that happens”, or a thousand other qualifications, but simply: “This is what I am going to be”. Sure kids change their minds, some more than others, but the dreams held by a child at a given moment in their lives stay alive as real and achievable goals.

With a little help from my double-trouble twins (OK a lot of help!) we came up with a story as viewed through the eyes of a child, which reflects the above phenomenon – how dreams start and where children believe the dreams will take them.

So what happens along the way to some of us that causes us to forget our dreams or put the dream off until tomorrow. “Tomorrow” – that place of the future where all sorts of wonderful things are going to happen if you ever actually get there? To a child, having a dream turn into reality is as natural as falling asleep, night follows day, eating an apple or a pear, or putting mud on your face. It is a natural expectation for a child that if I say it, I will do it.

So I asked myself “Why did I wait so long to make my first dream come true?” And then I asked myself “Why did I wait so long to move on to the next dream…” (I’ve always been one of those kids that has a lot of dreams) “…knowing that dreams can become reality”. The answer was clear. Unlike a child, I lost confidence in my dreams, so much so that even after achieving one dream I still doubted whether I could turn another dream into a reality. I was afraid of shadows and the shadows returned again – shadows that were no more than tree branches scratching at the windows. Then, as with the first dream, I opened the window, I stepped outside the door, I went beyond my familiar comfort zone, and I started to climb that new tree, the very tree that scared me. And I thought what would have happened to my dreams if I stayed frightened of the shadows, and what would have happened if I didn’t find this new tree to climb. The answer was clear: a different reality would have happened, different to the one I that the child inside of me who dares to dream wants in his life.

At USQ we have the possibilities, the courses, the degrees, the international reputation to help you turn your dreams into reality. And you don’t have to do it all on your own. We have the people to help you negotiate your way through the shadows. Lecturers, librarians, ICT support, Student Relationship Officers, Learning Centre Staff, students, a whole community waiting to work with you toward your dreams. A place where once again you can have the confidence to believe that your dreams are a natural expectation.

This is Lindsay Nicholson, father of three, husband, former lawyer from another life, current USQ Bachelor of Science (Psychology) student, signing off and wishing you happy dreams and prosperous realities. The eye lids are feeling heavy. I think I will go and have a dream. Nighty night…

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About Lindsay - USQ Student Blogger

Hello I'm Lindsay from Laidley, a distance education student from USQ Toowoomba. This is my first year as a Bachelor of Science (Psychology) student. I come from an Arts/Law background (double degree) and am transitioning careers (Hopefully!) after having practised as a regional lawyer for the past several years. Initially enrolled in the Graduate Diploma in Teaching and Learning online at USQ Toowoomba, I chose to transfer into the Bachelor of Science (Psychology). After satisfying some prerequisites I may yet transfer over to the Graduate Diploma of Psychological Studies or simply remain in the current degree until graduation. The beauty of either choice is that my previous studies are recognised, by way of exemptions in the Bachelor of Science (Psychology) - up to 8 courses - or through the structure of the GDPS which only requires graduates to complete 8 courses on top of 3 intro prerequisites (to be completed prior to applying for the GDPS). Potentially I could complete the equivalent of an undergraduate psychology degree in around 2 years part time and 1 year full time, and then it's on to Honours and a PhD or residency (Hopefully!). Whilst I have come from a professional vocational background and am headed into the professions again, I am in to all things literary, arty, and creative and may pick up some creative arts studies at USQ in the near future. My true passion is creative writing, and I find everything that I have done in life to be a cauldron of mysterious mixtures in which I stir the silver ladle to draw out my fictional worlds and characters. But I'm not just bookish! I love to run, run, run, and climb, climb, climb, and spend hours every week pushing my limits and boosting my brain with healthy endorphins. As a youngster I was into competitive Taekwondo and won gold and silver medals in various Tournaments. These days, as a father of three, with wife and mortgage, I have opted for dodging traffic (Sometimes!) rather than feet and fists, when I'm on my long distance runs, or avoiding the odd falling rock when I climbing Table Top mountain. At the end of the day I'm running after achievement and a happy blend of the physical and the intellectual. I love academia and a university that offers flexibility for people with busy schedules. The USQ distance education programme, which I am honoured to undertake, gives me all the time I need to juggle a fairly busy lifestyle - study, sports, work, and family. I can't wait for semester 2 - I'll hit the ground running.

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