Dearest 18-year-old me,
I know that no matter where we are right now in terms of our academic career, it’s at this age that we made the conscious decision of fully committing ourselves to our love for writing.
That though we remain to be unsure where will be in the next year or two, one thing is for sure; we will chase after the one thing we truly believe we are good at. Doesn’t matter if it meant crawling our way to it or going back to school to become truly well-versed in the field – we’ve already made a vow to ourselves that this what we want to pursue.
Not just because of the simple fact that the activity puts so much joy and contentment in our little creative hearts, but also because of the concept of earning a living without sacrificing our sanity is a romantic idea that we’d love to experience in due time.
We’ve already fallen in love with the scene of our screenplays making it to the cinemas or TV sets, the scenarios of having the book we’ve worked hard on for years, boxes of copies being distributed around nationwide and going to several book signings.
These are the highlights of the life that we hope – and pray – to achieve in time.
This is the sugar-coated, romanticized version of chasing after your heart’s desire.
The nitty-gritty and much real scene of following your dreams is this: the moment we make something out of these long lists of plans and daydreams, its picturesque landscape loses its appeal and we’re left with no choice but to see things how they actually are.
Realistically speaking, the journey to our professional dreams – dream life – is much more slow and unromantic than our minds make it to be. It is monotonous and at the worse, painful. It is undeniably exhausting, frustrating and most of all, heart breaking.
The roads we need to travel are rough. With dark corners and alleyways in every turn. Its streets are full of people whose main role either falls between helping you move forward or blocking every maneuver you make.
But admittedly, it also has its lovely moments. In-between them though are uneventful and even, painstaking ones when everything we create doesn’t seem to be enough and we convince ourselves that what we made is mediocre that we start to fight those people who are coercing you to get out of your defense mechanism. Every now and then, we receive feedback, comments and opinions that makes us question whether or not should we still continue because we may never actually make it. Nights when we force to keep ourselves awake until 3 in the morning, only to have nothing to show for the hard work we have done and days when we’re awaken by our alarm clocks to the thought that we’d rather be anywhere else than here. Mundane ones of us doing the same task over and over again – thinking to ourselves that there has got to be something more than what we have right now.
These soul-crushing flashes of seconds and all the rejection and pain that we perceive vanishes in one sliver of uplifting occasions. We feel a surge calm and contentment flood in whenever we see ourselves working on a write up inside our favorite coworking space. When we receive a phone call bearing some good news – these are the moments that help us get back up again.
They let us find the spark – that feeling that makes our hearts race and gets our blood flowing – to move forward and become better at what we do.
This is what it feels like to follow your dreams. It’s heartbreak, its pain but more than that, it’s made up of ordinary days. A lot of flatness and tedium.
Following your dreams meant finding the power in yourself to overcome the thoughts of giving up because whenever we add up the small tasks and the boring moments, we are slowly but surely going down the right road.
So keep on living in these moments. Let’s keep writing and writing until we find ourselves doing bigger things. Keep on carrying out your day job and do so with pride. Keep the people you’ve met in your coworking community close and keep on learning from them – if possible, ask for their help.
Do this every day. Do this every hour, every minute, every second. Though it may seem humdrum, exhausting, and ordinary, keep on doing it. Be dedicated to our craft no matter how uncertain things get.
Be all of this for the following days and we’ll make it through.