Don't Let Anybody Burst Your Bubble

Real Estate Broker/Owner with North Shore Suburbs & Chicago Real Estate

ToothFairyLike other kids, my niece was almost 9 years old as she approached the final phase of childhood tooth loss.  One evening, after successfully wiggling out a molar, she expressed excitement in anticipation of the tooth fairy’s arrival.  My brother, feeling she was getting old enough to know the truth, decided to break the news to her that evening.  After telling my niece he was actually the one swapping teeth for money, she turned to me and said, “Aunt Carie, is that true?”  I responded, “No, I don’t think so ... the tooth fairy always came and left money under my pillow!”  At this point, I could tell she really wanted to believe me -- but she also appeared conflicted over her father's confession.  Still searching for a definitive answer, she repeatedly questioned us both until finally turning to my brother and stating, “Daddy, if you’re the tooth fairy -- then prove it!"  She lifted up the lapels of his jacket while exclaiming, “Show me your wings, Daddy -- I want to see your wings!”  So cute and so adamant at the same time.  Yet, she unknowingly reminded me of a very valuable lesson:  When you really believe in something with all your heart, don't let anybody take that dream away from you.  Ever.

Think about it ... we all have a dream, or two, or three. 
Maybe it’s an idea for a new business venture.  Perhaps it’s the desire for a career change or the need to make a fresh start.  Whatever the dream may be, I have found that something invariably happens:  Someone will try to dissuade me, or tell me I’m making a mistake, or say that I must be “crazy."  Someone will say my dream is too risky, or that I'll fail, or that I’m too old to try.  I'm sure no harm is intended.  And quite easily, I could find myself filling up with self doubt -- overwhelmingly tempted to give in and give up.  However, I also know that if I internalize their words -- their words will quickly become my beliefs.  So, I just don't do it.  Moreover, I know that one person's perception is not necessarily my reality.  As my niece uniquely demonstrated with her father, until somebody can prove to me otherwise, I'll just hang onto my dream with both hands -- thank you very much.

Not long ago, I watched an interview with Barbra Streisand. 
At the onset of Barbra’s career, her mother urged her to put her dream of becoming an actress/singer on hold and become a typist ... just in case.  Can you imagine?  Don't get me wrong -- I welcome any advice (especially from my mother) which will assist me in achieving my goals.  Yet, the decisions are ultimately mine to make.  Follow your passion and stay mindful of your dreams -- it's amazing how easy it is to lose sight of the simple lessons we often learn early in life.  Here's another valuable lesson I learned from my niece:  Did you know the going rate for a tooth has gone up from 25 cents when I was a kid -- to 5 bucks a tooth now?  Whoa ... talk about a lesson in inflation!

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carie shapiro

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Adrian Willanger
206 909-7536 - Seattle, WA
Profit from my two decades of experience

Hi Carrie-what a cute post, I'm in the camp of letting them believe in what they want as long as they can, they'll soon enough run into people who will be more than happy to burst their bubbles.

Jan 26, 2012 02:58 AM #1
Vince Chinell
VICO Home Inspection - Branson, MO

Carrie, A lesson for all to think about...suggest...What's that about $5.00 a tooth, where have I been?

Jan 26, 2012 03:25 AM #2
Li Read
Sea to Sky Premier Properties (Salt Spring) - Salt Spring Island, BC
Caring expertise...knowledge for you!

Lovely post, and a very important reminder to trust our instincts about ourselves, and to keep our focus on the passion that works for us.   We are not someone else's story.

Jan 26, 2012 03:28 AM #3
Carie Shapiro
North Shore Suburbs & Chicago Real Estate - Evanston, IL

Adrian:  You're right ... let them believe as long as possible -- we all get our reality checks soon enough!

Vince:  $5 a tooth now!  Times have changed, right? :)

Li:  "We are not someone else's story" ... I like that very much :)

Jan 26, 2012 04:01 AM #4
John McCormack, CRS
Albuquerque Homes Realty - Albuquerque, NM
Honesty, Integrity, Results, Experienced. HIRE Me!

Good grief talk about inflation!  I did good to get a dime out of the Tooth Fairy :)  Without dreams AKA goals we have nothing in both personal and business lives.

Jan 26, 2012 04:15 AM #5
Chris Hardy
Elevations Real Estate, LLC - Fort Collins, CO
Northern Colorado Real Estate

FIVE BUCKS A TOOTH!?  Wow!  The tooth fairy needs a lesson in economics!  Great post.  Always interesting the advice that comes out of love but can often be completely misguided.  Learning how to answer the question "what is your passion" needs to be taught both early and often.  So many people- especially grown-ups, have no idea what they want or what they're passionate about.  I love that you've found one of your passions here in the rain - Great Blogs! 

Jan 26, 2012 04:24 AM #6
Alan May
Jameson Sotheby's International Realty - Evanston, IL
There's no place like home.

When my daughter was older, she though she was sooooo smart.  One night after she'd lost a tooth, and we talked about the tooth fairing bringing her money.... she said "Daddy... I know you're the tooth fairy!".

I replied... you know what honey... you're right!!  I AM the tooth fairy!!  She was stunned for a moment, and turned to look at my wife.  My wife shook her head back and forth as if to say: "No, he's not... daddy's kidding!".  She looked back at me, and I was still beaming...

That night we put two separate packets under her pillow.  One, with a hastily scribbled note from me that said "thanks for the tooth", along with a shiny quarter....... and another, more typical of the notes we'd left in the past, in an ornate envelope... with glitter, and a flowery, eloquent note thanking her for her tooth donation, and a crisp one-dollar bill.

In the morning, she proudly presented them both in front of me and told me "I knew you weren't the tooth fairy... LOOK, here's the real letter... and here's the note from YOU!  It's in YOUR handwriting, and it only has a quarter in it... the tooth fairy gave me a dollar.... and we know that you're so cheap, you only gave me a quarter!!  I knew you weren't the tooth fairy."

I said "you got me... you're right, I'm not the tooth fairy... can I have the quarter back?"  She refused.

Jan 26, 2012 04:50 AM #7
Janis Borgueta
Key Properties of the Hudson Valley - Newburgh, NY
LIC RE Salesperson

Great writing as always.. you sure do keep the attention with your stories... Gotta love the tooth fairy! =)

Jan 26, 2012 06:16 AM #8
Carie Shapiro
North Shore Suburbs & Chicago Real Estate - Evanston, IL

John:  I agree ... dreams/goals are what keep us inspired, motivated, and hopeful.  Makes life more exciting, too!

Chris:  What a nice comment ... thank you :)  You're right ... many times skewed advice is based on love and good intentions.  And, I like your idea of teaching and conditioning us about dreams and passion early and more often!

Alan:  I love your daughter's attitude!  She's got some spirit ... and a good head on her shoulders.  Thanks for sharing that story :)

Janis:  Thanks!  Who doesn't love the tooth fairy :)

Jan 26, 2012 06:26 AM #9
Cynthia Larsen
Cotati, CA
Independent Broker In Sonoma County, CA

Good for your Niece! It wasn't a matter of whether the tooth fairy existed, it was a matter of WHO the tooth fairy was. How cute.

Jan 26, 2012 09:06 AM #10
1~Judi Barrett
Integrity Real Estate Services 118 SE AVE N, Idabel, OK 74745 - Idabel, OK
BS Ed, Integrity Real Estate Services -IDABEL OK

Absolutely.. holding that belief until someone completely shows it to be wrong is a child like character trait that we all could bear holding onto.  She wanted to see those wings.

Jan 26, 2012 12:58 PM #11
Carie Shapiro
North Shore Suburbs & Chicago Real Estate - Evanston, IL

Cynthia:  The whole scene was adorable!  And, she was quite astute -- I must say!

Judi:  You're so right ... we need to hang on to that trait more often in life, that's for sure!

Jan 26, 2012 02:55 PM #12
Marge Piwowarski
Phoenix AZ Horse Property - Phoenix, AZ
Phoenix AZ Horse Property, LLC

Carie, We are writing our own stories and creating our own reality.  Let those other people do their own stories, keep your own dreams, we build our reality from those. 

Jan 26, 2012 03:40 PM #13
Carie Shapiro
North Shore Suburbs & Chicago Real Estate - Evanston, IL

Marge:  We are writing our stories and let those people write their own ~ I like that a lot :)  Thanks!

Jan 27, 2012 02:45 AM #14
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