Tuesday, 19 July 2011

What Do You Want?

I know I've promised some of you a post on Soprano hair removal, and I WAS in the middle of it when I started this conversation with someone and doing a lot of thinking and self-analysis and about who we are, what we wanted in the past, what we want now, what matters, what doesn't and what doesn't anymore. (Okay maybe part of it was me having that conversation with myself since we weren't talking about ALL of that. Many of it was me thinking in my head.)

"I like how you dream and yet you stay grounded, and you can have so much more out of life but I'm happy with the way you are now too." It's like I can be so much more and deserve better, yet I'm good where I am? Yeah, I agree with that. There's never a ceiling to how much "more" we can want. Especially since when you've attained or gotten what you wanted. You may be happy with what you want, and you'll want other things, maybe simpler, maybe more. You may realize that what you wanted and have gotten may not be what makes you happy. And along the way, sometimes what you want changes because you change. Maybe it's just you getting older, maybe just wiser and see things clearer. Maybe you're just....mmm...different from who you were.

When I was young I wanted to be an actress. I watched a lot of TV and what inspired me was not just the shows and the professions in them. I could be watching a show about doctors and nurses, about brokers in the financial market, about lawyers and how warped and incorrect the world of crime and law can be, about cabaret dancers in a whimsical almost-dream-like twisted world of song and sleaze, or about firefighters risking their lives for other people...I could be watching about any of these, and what inspired me was what was going on outside the show - that Zoe Tay was not just Zoe Tay, she could be so many things. She could be a 傻大姐 in this show, a prostitute in another, and then she's a police, next she's the Queen of Gamblers. I got so attracted to what she does - acting, that I told myself that one day, I'll be an actress. Why be content with being just one profession when I can be them all, albeit just briefly and pretending, being an actress?

I'm an actress now. I'm happy with what I wanted and have achieved so far. But now, I want to be more...maybe I want to be an actress who is given more roles, deeper roles whose characters I can build and develop instead of just being a so-and-so's girlfriend, or a side story in the drama. Maybe I want to do theatre and relive the exhilaration of a one-time-uninterrupted act. (Stage and TV are VERY VERY different, I can tell you that. With stage, there are no NGs, no retakes. Just pure smooth dictation of your stage character.

I never thought I'll be a blogger. I've kept diaries before, and then online diaries written with a pseudonym (cos Mummy kept prying around my childish secrets) and kept the URL only to myself and maybe a couple of selected friends, but I've never thought that I would one day write the way I do now, speaking to all of you in a manner so comfortable it feels like second nature. I write my most engaging thoughts down here more than I articulate them with the people around me. So some of you, especially those who have been following me faithfully since I started this blog, really know me, probably better than most friends I have (unless you're a friend who reads me. ^.^) I'm someone I never thought of wanting to be, an accidental I think wonderful. Because I'm happy being a blogger. I'm happy being a writer. I'm happy doing this whatever you call it, but the point is, I'm happy. And if you ask me if I want to continue this, I'll say, yes, of course I want to.

I've never thought of this when I was younger, but since I'm not exactly 16 anymore, I've been thinking of what I want in life at this juncture. I want a successful business (more on that another time), I want a family, a happy family with a loving and equally-successful-if-not-more husband and 3 intelligent yet humble, at the same time outspoken and well-taught kids and everyone communicates well and the house is always bubbly and cheerful and everyone's bonded. I want that. Of course I want it in a landed house, furnished tastefully and yet it doesn't feel so atas that it's lost my fun character in it. The house must feel like it includes WHO I AM. Of course the house would have a couple of well-mannered but fun-loving dogs. (My deepest regret is not being able to afford a house of my own earlier so that I can keep 2 dogs so Alton will always have a companion even when I'm not home.)

Of course I want more out of life. I've never told anyone about what I want in my life, not in the last 10 years anyway. And here I'm sharing it for the first time to the whole world. I'll get them eventually, and even if I don't, I'll get close. I just gotta do it at my own pace. Get married now? You're crazy. Ask me 2-3 years later, and you'll most probably get a different answer.

Okay what happens next after all this thinking is random, I just walked out and started hanging up the laundry (yes, in the middle of the night at 2am, in the middle of deep thoughts amidst a deep conversation which happened in the middle of writing about hair removal. My mind's everywhere.) And while hanging up the clothes, I thought about what my friend said to me earlier, and I realized that I'm someone who will do well no matter what I choose to do, where I choose to be. Because I want to. Because that's who I am, how I function. 要做就做到最好,要不然就不要做。That translates to: If you want to do anything, do your best. Otherwise, don't do.

And I suddenly remember a question posed to us trainees during my training days as a flight stewardess. Most instructors, in the first class they have with us, will ask us to each stand up and introduce ourselves, what we were doing before joining, why did we join the company, etc. This particular instructor asked us to think about what animal we think best represents us, and why.

I said I was a chameleon. Because I adapt very well to the surroundings, no matter where I am.

That was 5 years ago, September 2005.

As I write this I suddenly remember that I was posed this question back in school too. Not sure if it was in primary or secondary or tertiary education, but I was asked the same question. And my answer, somehow, though I never recalled being asked before in 2005, was the same.

I guess I'm still one, a chameleon. I adapt. And I make the most of it. And I move on when I can, or need to, and adapt again. All the while staying grounded, a change at a time. I guess that's what keeps my life interesting. And I'm smiling at myself as I'm writing this, I don't know why.

I want to achieve greater heights all the time, and that doesn't necessarily always mean a higher status. It depends on who you want to be at that point in time. When my priorities one day become that of a mother's, what I may want may just be to be a great mother to my children, and that in itself would be greater than anything else, then. It doesn't matter who you want to be, just be your best at it.

It doesn't matter what you want, at which point in your life, as long as you do your best to get it. The journey is so much more exciting than the goal, don't miss it. Just always remember: Never lose yourself along the way. So many people get caught up in chasing what they want obsessively, that they fail to see and feel the journey, that they lose sight of why they want what they want in the first place.

I'm done with the laundry by the way. I'll leave you here and I'll insert that promised Soprano post later in the afternoon. For now, after all that thinking and talking and typing, I shall rest my overstrung, all-over-the-place mind and go to bed.


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