Squelching Dreams


Cello (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I was talking with an acquaintance yesterday, and he shared a story that broke my heart.

He told me of a co-worker’s son. This boy was already an accomplished musician at the tender age of 14. He plays cello 6 hours a day (including weekends!) in addition to his regular schoolwork. He is almost good enough to play professionally. He’s obviously dedicated to it.

Yet his father doesn’t want him to pursue it. There are no “marketable” skills to be gained by playing the cello. There are only about 6 job openings a year. The excuses go on and on. The boy had even auditioned and been accepted to attend School for Creative and Performing Arts. The father is not going to allow it.

I kept thinking, “The boy is only 14! He loves what he does! Let him continue…he’s got plenty of time for learning ‘marketable’ skills.” I wanted to tell the father that there are so many parents who would love to have a child that is interested in something other than video games. Or plenty of us whose dreams have been crushed by some well-meaning person advising us to take the safe route.

Granted, I heard the story second-hand, but it still rings true. We’ve all heard this story in one way or another. Hell, I’ve even acted like the father, discouraging others from their following their dreams.

I hope the son finds a way to follow his passion, and his father finds a way to help him, however he can. That is my wish for everyone. To have the support you need to follow your dreams.