Everyone always preaches about how people should follow their dreams and pursue happiness. I’m a huge believer in it, don’t get me wrong, its just that dreams come at a cost. The struggle and the sacrifice you make for what you want is visceral, tangible and usually irreversible.
My motto in life was to live life with no regrets! As a child, I wanted to be a teacher, then doctor, lawyer, the list continued to fashion and rest was history. The entertainment bit came along and nibbled at me like a lost pet. It would always find its way to me, in the form of photoshoots as a fashion student, interning at a TV station, or Saturday morning classes while in elementary school. To be honest, it came easy, I scored myself an agent when I was 10 years old up to the point when my job search after university had just began. It circled around again in my favour until I couldn’t ignore it. That was in 2006, its almost a decade later and the hustle hasn’t stopped.
When you’re busy trying to book your first job or in my case, relentlessly trying to have people notice you, its easy to prioritize work before anything else. I’ve met so many great people in my life but I feel like I’ve also dismissed many along the way. I keep telling myself that I’m lucky to have “real friends” who are the ones that reach out, but it is I who should be the “real friend” and reciprocate. I wish I were a better friend, I really do.
My family lives half-way around the world, minus my baby bro who’s journeying through China and finding himself. When my dad had an operation earlier this year, the only gestures I could offer were limited to FaceTime and emails. When my mom had a mini health scare, I could only rely on my responsible brother to dutifully supervise her update the rest of us. I’m sure people who live in different cities than their ageing parents can relate. It’s so easy to take for granted modern technology that connects us but building memories over FaceTime isn’t really going to go down in the books.
“Career or family?” my sister asks.
I wish I could have both equally without having to sacrifice one for the other. Maybe I’m just unlucky that I couldn’t find them both in the same place. The phrase struggle is real is such a cliche but it has become something I understand more and more. There will always be a moment that you wish you could forgo one for another. Now, regret is all the things I didn’t do when I was busy pursuing the things I wanted to do. It all comes at a cost. What’s ironic is that regret has seemingly become the product of my motto in life.