When I was about 13 years old, I starting dreaming about going to university. I imagined it would be like the American colleges we see in the movies… like Princeton or Harvard or Stanford… with old brick buildings, cobblestone walkways, and stained glass windows in the library. Unfortunately, when I arrived in Calgary, my vision of what college was rapidly changed. The buildings were old, sure, but not character-old. And Mount Royal College even had automatically flushing toilets, which did not go over very well with me.
UVic happened to be a little more part of what my dreams were. Even though the buildings are fairly new, if not brand new, my imagined campus with huge trees, with big trunks to lean up against when studying and leaves to fall in autumn, and brick walkways flanked with grassy areas, where it’s very common to find someone playing an impromptu “Dave Matthews” or “Jack Johnson” on his acoustic guitar by the fountain. Even though it rains, you can almost skip from tree to tree to keep shelter from the winds. The magnificent reds and oranges of the leaves are replaced with beautiful lilac buds and scads of daffodils in the spring. Every time I walk out of a building, I take a huge breath and think “This isn’t like in Dawson’s Creek…but it’s close!” UVic is beautiful, but the geographics still didn’t fit my college imagination; my college dream.
(I stole this picture off the web…it hardly does any justice to the school…I really need a camera)
The more I think about it though, UVic was my dream. In grade 12, right before grad, we had to fill out a form that said “Where you plan to be next year” and I wrote “Victoria.” When I got my diploma, they said “Kate Stam, future plans: UVic”. When I was 10, Victoria was the main, vivid vacation spot I had so I always wanted to live or end up here. Life panned out, I spent 3 very important and growing years in Calgary, before I came here. I never was accepted to UVic the year I graduated high school. I couldn’t come here. Yet I was so sure Victoria is where I was supposed to be.
This is interesting because God has a way of bringing our lives either full circle, or back onto the path of His plan. Now I am almost done the first half of my second year at UVic, my fifth year at post-secondary, and I am marvelling in something kind of bizarre: my dream came true — I am at the University of Victoria. Wow. I am struggling because I just got an e-mail a few days ago that said:
Hi, Katie, Here is your new updated degree report. You are all set to graduate April, 2009. Let me know if you have any questions.
Wow! Are you serious? I mean, it’s felt like a lifetime ago that I started this adventure, and I am so unbelievably excited to finish this part of my education, but a quiet voice in my heart whispered “already?” That’s the thing about dreams come true — when they do, you have to appreciate and enjoy and envelope yourself in the awe of that moment when that dream is realized…and then spend every moment living with that realization and doing with that dream all that you can to show you’ve appreciated it. Because all that dreams come true are are answered prayers. And I don’t think I’ve used these one and a bit years so far giving back to the Lord in what He gave to me in realizing this dream. I need to remember that… and I thought I would share that for you and your own answered prayer-dreams… what have you done with your own dreams come true and answered prayers?
And after my moment or understanding, I thought that I need to do something to really appreciate my own answered prayers and then thought… however selfishly… “But thank you Lord, I get to graduate. Finally!“