March 18, 2011, 9:36 AM, Friday
TALKING TO MYSELF
“So, that went well. Pretty good interview. And they made an offer. Shit. I couldn’t be more lost.”
Weeks ago, I would have accepted it there and then, at the very instant that contract was handed to me. I would have pulled out all the stops and made sure I would get to the finish line.
Why the change? In a span of 2 weeks, something in me changed. I no longer have the same narrow road I envisioned for myself. There are now multiple roads, with turns at every corner.
I guess, I’ve always secretly hoped someone else (Hello God) would decide for me, that if it was/is His will, He would make it happen anyway.
Do I want to teach? Yes. But do I have what it takes? Can I commit myself fully to it, without second guessing about the next audition or play that comes along? Without wondering about “less stressful” jobs with better pay? Without regretting leaving the family business? Without worrying about anything else but teaching these students? If the answers to those are all resounding Yes-es, then let the Lord help me with setting it in stone (and ink) and facing the consequences that follow.
Which avenue should I use to share myself? Performing? Teaching? Writing? Helping in the Business? Which road?
So what about teaching children? If you know me well enough, you should know that if there’s one thing that will get me all googly-eyed, it’s children. I love them and want to make many of them (IN THE FUTURE.)
Then again, I do have to keep reminding myself of the fact that children are one thing. Teaching them is another. Also, this desire to teach came at a point of desperation, questioning and insecurity. It came when I was desperately looking for a full-time job, for some stability, for a “purpose-driven life”. My fear is that I may be misconstruing the desire to find “the job” and translating that into a “desire to teach”.
How does one figure out what one really wants? How does one know? How do I know now how to decide and which road to take? Do I teach and do theater? Do I work in the business and do theater? Do I do theater alone? Do I teach alone? Do I work alone? So plenty are the possible “permutations”.
If I do decide to take the teaching job, what happens to the job I leave in the company? To my dad and his dream of having us with him in the company? Will it (the apprenticeship) have gone to waste? I hope not. I’d like to believe that the apprenticeship in the family company happened for a reason. Scary as this sounds, I keep praying to my grandfather that if he wants me to stay in the funeral home, to give me some kind of sign, to show me the light and lead the way for me.
Truthfully, the decision to even try it out in the company came after I was offered a deal I couldn’t refuse. I would have to work but I would have a pliable enough schedule that would allow me to do theater. Who wouldn’t bite right?
Working in the office ironically gave me a breather, at least from my self and my thoughts (which can have a life of its own). Working for our company allowed me to see the “dark side” in a different light. I began to appreciate the business not just for what it brought to the table but how it helped others, how it gave my Dad a sense of purpose as well. I went from being lost, dazed and confused to gaining better footing and direction. From being the surly, depressed, pseudo teenager with “I hate the world. Waaah” written across my forehead, I became more calm, mature and patient with what the world had to offer. I learned to breathe.
I realize, and quite sadly, that most( if not all) of my decisions have been hinged on what I think others will say, on how I think others will react/feel/be pleased/be disappointed. I seem to have lost the courage to decide for myself and myself alone.
I have a week (at most) to decide on this. I have a week to truly reflect on what I want and where I want to take my life and share it. I have a week to learn what it’s like to decide on my own and deal with the consequences, without having anyone else to thank (or blame) but myself.
And so if I do decide to teach, I must teach myself first—to make a choice and commit to it. To be brave and decide.
There are many roads and ways. To each his own. To (t)each his own.