We all have big dreams and little dreams. Big dreams are the life changing, driving goals in life like earning a degree, landing a dream job, or having a family. Little dreams are the more modest, “nice but not necessary” achievements like swimming with sea turtles, sky diving or learning how to bake croissants. If little dreams aren’t achieved, it’s not a big deal to let them go and life isn’t altered in any major way. My 8th grade dream of driving a golf cart that I still haven’t achieved? Meh. The thing about little dreams though, is that they still matter.
Little dreams can be little marker. They are small rewards that can infuse us with joy, spark us back to life or help us keep momentum toward our big dreams. They are the small dots that can help us connect the big dots and, for me, one of those little dreams has been to earn my own kit.
The first time I was in a local cycling race, I saw all the elite racers looking totally pro in their matching kit. Atop lightweight carbon bikes, they were all wearing tight fitting matching kit that showed off their stacked quads. The link was clear to me: team kit meant you were good.
I wanted to be good. Even when I switched to triathlon, that little dream followed me. Earning my own kit was a desire that never really went away because my desire to be better never went away. I knew it was more important to act like an athlete than to look like one but it was this distant background goal, a little dream. It wouldn’t be a big deal in the grand scheme of things if I achieved it but it would be a silent little victory for myself. A little box I could check off proving to myself that I had come a long way, doing something that was once out of reach, and that I was closer to my bigger dream of being a better athlete.
It took me longer than most but I finally earned my own kit and it’s better than I imagined. Pulling on a custom tri-suit from Bioracer that I helped design was surreal. I had the privilege of living out this little dream and, while the desire to be better is stronger than ever, having my own kit reminds me that I’m good enough. When I look down I see a list of people that believe I’m good enough to chase bigger dreams and, hopefully, my new speedwear will get me there a little faster.