I am many things and I play many roles.
I am someone’s daughter. I am a sister, a friend, and a confidante. I am an enemy, a student, and an acquaintance. I am a granddaughter, a cousin, an aunt, and a niece. I am a fiancé. I will be a daughter-in-law, a wife and a mother one day.
And I am me – amazing & incredible.
I spent my childhood trying to be the perfect daughter and the perfect student. I exceed at both. I was a perfectionist. I would always go above and beyond myself trying to be the best that I could possibly be – and I was – it just didn’t end well for me. I got placed on a pedestal from which I inevitably fell. I should have seen it coming really. I couldn’t live up to my parents high-rise expectations…anymore. I tried, I really did…to live for them, to be who they wanted, to make them proud. I failed, and then one day I decided I couldn’t do this anymore. I wanted to live for me. This, this is the point at which I can mark a significant milestone in my life.
Maybe rebelling against your parents is a stepping stone of a sort in every teenager’s life. I don’t know what it was for me…but that’s something I shouldn’t even begin to explore right now.
All these relationships – roles – always had a set of different expectations and needs from me. I tried to be who they wanted me to be for each of them. I tried my best, but most of them would probably say I did a lousy job if you asked them. I suspect that might have been why I stopped trying. I was giving and not getting in return, and I had nothing else to give.
I wanted to live for myself, something that I hadn’t been doing.
I did for awhile. I failed epically at balancing what I wanted and what my parents wanted from me. Old habits die hard.
Somewhere along the way – I didn’t realize it, but – my life became about everyone else, and less about myself. I realized you compromise with one thing, and before you know it you’re doing it again, and again and again. So I started living by these guidelines of being someone’s daughter, someone’s wife-to-be, someone’s daughter-in-law…etc, etc, etc and there was a different protocol for each of course. And slowly that’s all my life became, being some different for everyone. I started talking to my friends less because it was taking more effort to keep in touch than I wanted to make, and perhaps it was the same for them. I fell out of touch and that sphere of my life that defined me just became a vague memory of the past: out of reach, irretrievable.
I remember being ambitious and goal oriented. I love books, and reading, and studying even. I love the feeling I get before an exam, and the feeling I get after I walk out. Crunch time and writing a paper under pressure – it sounds insane, but I love it. I was studying psychology: mental health studies and public policy. I didn’t know where it would take me, but I knew I wanted to pursue either psychology or law afterwards…it was worth a try.
& right now…I’m considering dropping the idea, and taking a two year professional baking course and calling it a day. Where does baking come in? I love it. The feeling you get when something turns out the way it was supposed to and looks just as scrumptious as it did in that photo in the recipe book? – Priceless. But I never really wanted to be a baker, I just enjoy baking.
Let me explain…I think I’m cheating myself trying to take the easy way out. I planned to graduate in 2012 and right now that’s not happening because I’ve been out of school since first year. That’s what gets to me. That three year gap, yes. It’s not a competition and there’s no timeline…but for me there is, I feel like I’m behind and I can’t catch up so it makes me not want it anymore. And I know I’m running the risk of sounding very shallow right now, but deep down I think it might even have something to do with not wanting to do because my parents want me to. Blaming them just seems so much easier, but that also means cheating myself out of a career, an education and things that I really love.
What my problem is? I don’t know who I am anymore…I’ve been so engrossed in trying to be all these people, that I’ve forgotten what it’s like to be me for myself. I’ve been giving this a lot of thought because….I don’t want it to be like that anymore.
I no longer want to be bitter over the past. I want to close that chapter of my life on a happy note, and start another without resentment of the past.
I’m just trying to find my way.
I’m trying to find me.
I would rather be ashes than dust! I would rather that my spark should burn out in a brilliant blaze than it should be stifled by dry-rot. I would rather be a superb meteor, every atom of me in magnificent glow, than a sleepy and permanent planet. The function of man is to live, not to exist. I shall not waste my days trying to prolong them. I shall use my time. – Jack London