On Deferred Dreams

The city was ensconced in a thick and eerie fog this morning, and as I took Marley on our early walk I couldn’t help but feel trepidation about what the day might bring. This Friday the 13th- not to mention a Friday the 13th during a global pandemic- was off to an auspicious start. The fact that I’d been awake since 1:30am unable to sleep with a busy day of teaching ahead didn’t help my state of mind.


Things had already not been going well; we had a big plumbing issue and a couple of small leaks become apparent, frustrating after having done major plumbing work just three years ago for our hundred year-old home. We’ve had several other unexpected expenses come up recently, causing us to worry about finances during an already stressful period in our lives. I knew the time had come to dip into a special savings account, our cabin account, and I was absolutely devastated.

Knottyhead Falls on the upper Nantahala River.

The cabin account was started summer before last after a trip to our beloved Nantahala Gorge in Western North Carolina. I had an epiphany during our stay when I found that one of the cabins in an area we’d stayed at for several years was for sale. It wasn’t the right place for us or the right time, but something shifted in me and I told Dan that come Hell or high water, I was going to find a way to buy a cabin for us. Life is so stressful and the thought of having a place to escape to and then retire to in a few years gave me something hopeful and positive to hold close during these rough months of the pandemic.

Walking the AT (Appalachian Trail)…

We opened a special savings account that I would faithfully deposit any money from playing jobs or private lessons. It felt so wonderful to know that I was actively pursuing my dream, and I kept a daily watch on Zillow, saving my favorite cabins in the Bryson City area, learning what really resonated with me as I looked at all of the different properties for sale. We love the A-frame chalet style cabins, hoping to be on the Nantahala River, or at least on some sort of water. Nothing fancy, just enough room for us to feel cozy and have company over to visit, just enough property to feel like we are in the woods. Being in the peace and quiet of nature by the river that holds so many precious memories for us since the very beginning of our relationship would truly be a dream come true.

I felt on the verge of tears all morning. As we were rinsing dishes after lunch, Dan stood behind me and told me how sorry he was that we had to take the cabin account to deal with expenses for our home. That’s all it took- I burst into tears, sobbing uncontrollably as Dan held me. It wasn’t just the money; it was mourning the loss of a dream combined with months of pandemic-induced stress and challenge.

I know my dream hasn’t died- it’s just been deferred. we made the right decision to take care of the home we love, the home that is our sanctuary in this crazy world. We will get back to saving for our cabin when we can. Until then, I will keep dreaming as I scroll through cabins for sale in Bryson City, visualizing my goal, putting every positive vibe out there that I can to make it happen.

Our wedding at Knottyhead Falls.

2 thoughts on “On Deferred Dreams

  1. Oh Denise! I’m so sorry you had to raid the cabin savings. But as you said – come hell or high water you will get your dream come true. I believe that tenacity will prove the difference. I will send all the good vibes I can so that this set back is just a minor blip in the road to your cabin.

    1. I really appreciate the kind words and positive vibes- thank you! I won’t give up. I know that everything happens for a reason and that there will be a special cabin waiting for us when the time is right. 🙏❤️

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