It takes a village to raise a dream


My dream is my baby. Since the day it was born I have loved it like no other, and put my dream’s needs before my own. Having it is the best thing I have ever done. It changed my life. But not only mine. In many ways it has also changed the lives of those closest to me.

They say it takes a village to raise a child. Well, the same could be said about dreams. Raising a dream is hard; you have to love it, nurture it, give it all your attention and put your dream’s needs first in order for it to grow.

And as your dream develops, and you shift your life to accommodate this, the responsibility spreads out and begins to touch the lives of those closest to you.

My friends and family have been incredibly supportive of my travel dreams. They listen intently as I regale them with stories of where I am going to go and what I am going to do, and allow me to express my excitement to them, even though they may not share it.

They don’t mock my exuberance or diminish my dreams; they allow them to blossom.

Though I know they are worried for me, and aren’t exactly thrilled about the prospect of not seeing me for months or even years at a time, they keep those thoughts to themselves (for the most part!) and instead, ooh and ahh over my new backpack, read my blog posts, partake in all my social media outlets and let me know they have my back in every way possible. They’re all in. I feel like I’m a Jewish bride, being held aloft on my chair whilst those I love most dance and sing around me, celebrating the start of my new life.

There have been countless moments over the past few years when, though they have not been aware of it, these people have helped shape and guide my dream. It bears the marks of their influence just as much as I do. My dream is them and they are my dream. I am not running away or hiding. I am steadfast in pursuit of something I believe in, and they are the small army I march forth with.


If I were writing this blog five years ago, you would have found yourself on a very different website. In fact, it probably wouldn’t exist at all (how much can a person write about shopping, celebrity gossip and sleeping an average of 14 hours a day?).

Last night one of my favourite people in the whole world (hi Phil!) told me she was really proud of how far I have come since then. It felt wonderful to hear those words, but even more wonderful to be able to believe she actually meant it. I can believe her so readily because I am also proud of me.

I have never felt that way about myself before.

We laughed as we compared the person I used to be with who I am now. It has been the most incredible journey, one that I have loved every moment of, and continue to revel in.

But it is a journey I have not taken alone. I had plenty of company along the way, and am forever grateful to those who walked the path beside me.

There is a line I love in a song by Joshua Radin that goes: “I sat beside you and became myself.” That’s how I feel about all these people. They allowed me to sit with them and talk and dream and grow. Without them I would still have a dream, and I would still make it come true, but it wouldn’t be half as wonderful a process if they weren’t here to share it with, and my story would undoubtedly have a very different ending.

Being a dreamer is a wonderful and rewarding experience. Having a dream is a gift.

Having people in your life who love and support you is priceless.


{ 17 comments… read them below or add one }

Devin January 27, 2012 at 18:38

Your a true inspiration! I am dying to take a yr or two and travel the world…any advice for a single 26yr old woman? I wish I had someone to travel with, because I am scared to travel by myself, I’m very petite at 5’2 lol and am a little scared about my safety. I really enjoyed this post, I’ve been following your blog for about a month now and your words are real and relatable, this one in particular was pure poetry to my ears.


Hannah January 28, 2012 at 18:17

Thank you Devin, that is such a lovely compliment. My advice to you would be to just go for it. I first started travelling alone when I was 27 and broke myself in gently by taking trips with companies such as G Adventures and Trek America, both of whom I can wholeheartedly recommend. I am the same height as you and had the same fears, so this was a great way to build my confidence and help me realise my capabilities. You should also read blogs by solo female travellers for more advice – is a great one. I also have a friend who is your age and travelled alone but met up with other solo females through Take a look and see what you think. If you have any other questions please feel free to email me and I will be more than happy to help. Good luck 🙂


Caroline January 27, 2012 at 20:55

Hannah what a beautiful post. Your writing is incredible and your story so inspirational, it’s no wonder people support your dreams, they are the sort that makes a person want to cheer from the sidelines! 🙂


Hannah January 28, 2012 at 18:18

Thank you so much Caroline, that really means a lot and is a huge compliment coming from such an amazing writer as yourself xxx


Renee January 27, 2012 at 21:13

Beautiful post:) Thanks for sharing & Have a Great Weekend!


Hannah January 28, 2012 at 18:19

Thank you so much Renee, I really appreciate your kind words 🙂


Kim January 28, 2012 at 05:47

Hannah, such a beautiful post. I love that quote and, though I didn’t know you before, I wholeheartedly believe that you have become the person that you are destined to become (and continue to grow into that person).
It really does take a whole army of people to support the unthinkable dream. I also feel grateful to the people that have encouraged me along the way (and sometimes they are the most unlikely of people!). I’m so glad that you have been supported along your journey and have been able to get to where you are- it’s where I “met” you.
Much love 🙂


Hannah January 28, 2012 at 18:21

Kim, I am so very glad that we have “met” and appreciate all the love and support you show me more than I can say. I am so grateful to you xxx


Sarahsomewhere January 28, 2012 at 14:10

Hannah to say this post made me emotional is an understatement! You blow me away! Sounds like you are surrounded by amazing people. When I first shared my dream, and didn’t get the response I wanted, I became very protective of ‘my baby’ and shut others out from it, in fear that they would diminish it in some way. Hence, my blog was born out of sheer necessity to express my dream in a true and honest way, encasing it in language and protecting me from the negativity of others. I have since learned that I don’t need to shut others out of my dream, that by sharing it, little flecks of it are radiated out into the lives of others, who realize their own dreams a little more clearly. Your unapologetic idealism invigorates me endlessly, I love your writing and am blessed to be a part of your journey.


Hannah January 28, 2012 at 18:27

Thank you so much for your beautiful words Sarah. I do have amazing people around me, and I am so glad that you are now one of them. Even though we have never met I feel your love and support, and offer it back in abundance. I love what you said about flecks of our dreams radiating out into the lives of others – that is such a lovely way of putting it and I can almost visualise my dream dancing on the wind like glitter and lighting up those around me. You are so brave and inspiring and I too am blessed to be a part of your journey xxx


Savvy Scot January 29, 2012 at 08:39

What a great post. You reminded me of one of my favourite quotes:
“Go out in the world and work like money doesn’t matter, Sing as if no one is listening, Love as if you have never been hurt, and Dance as if no one is watching”


Hannah January 31, 2012 at 22:57

Thank you – I love that quote too 🙂


Carmel February 3, 2012 at 19:02

I love that theory that it takes a village to raise a dream. I feel very blessed to have so much support in my life while my husband and I work toward our travel dreams. It’s often with a heavy heart that my mom expresses it, but she tells me often how proud she is of us for pursuing this goal. I know she’s going to have a really hard time once it gets here, but it means the world to me that she’s willing to set me free (even though I’m 31), and wants me to follow my own path. It’s the greatest gift someone can give.
I’m new here to your blog…when do you plan to set off on your adventure?


Hannah February 4, 2012 at 17:26

Hi Carmel, thank you so much for your comment. I know exactly how you feel. I am also 31 but still adore my mum for her willingness to open her arms and let me fly. I will never be able to fully express my gratitude to her. We set off on our adventure on 30th September and I can’t wait! How about you? I have just been checking out your blog – your tapas looks amazing. I will be following along on your journey and wish you all the best 🙂


Carmel February 4, 2012 at 19:21

We’re not planning to go until September 2013, so we’ll be a year behind you guys. I just ran with Kim from So Many Places this morning and she told me about your rickshaw plans. Sounds amazing.
Thanks for checking out my blog! Still deciding what kind of writing my husband and I will be doing on the road…I’ll probably still do a food focus since, as you can see, I am a little obsessed. 🙂


Hannah February 7, 2012 at 20:45

That sounds great Carmel. I will be reading no matter what you write about 🙂


Hanne January 19, 2013 at 11:50

What a beautiful post! Reading you is true delight, thank you for sharing and inspiring us all.
Take care.
Best regards


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