I don't know what I want to do with my life.
I am not a writer. I don't intend to be a writer. I hate writing. Or reading. The last book I read I was made to read – Elle India's Anniversary Issue – by a friend who works there.
She wants to work there.
I work at 101india. (Clearly) I have no idea what I want do with my life. But I don't NOT want to do this either. Except writing, I hate writing.
I am here.
All my life people have told me (they'll tell you too) how knowing what you want to do is half the battle to being successful, to being happy. Bullshit. Knowing polarises your world. It's what, in my opinion, tunnel-visions you into aiming for one thing, that only-one thing.
And no one thing is the holy grail.
Cautionary tale #1:
A good friend of mine is a very enterprising, very successful dermatologist. He always wanted to be a doctor. He ALWAYS wanted to be a doctor. Recently, some friends and I, stumbled upon his one entry in a slam book from over 15 years ago: What do you want to be in life?
“A god-damned doctor.”
He knows this at 13. He didn't just always want to be a doctor. He ONLY wanted to be one. “Such focus, such determination!” No, it's just a lack of imagination.
But find what you love and let it kill you, right?
My entry in that slam book was 'Lawyer'. I was watching a lot of The Practice and J.A.G. at the time. A lot of Catherine Bell. I actually did go to Law School eventually, but that's only because I didn't know what I should do after graduation. Plus, Law School was the best way to deflect my parents' NEED for me to get an MBA.
B.Sc. LLB, BTW, for you, who are wondering. Best years of my life; ten years ago. I didn't know then, what-the-hell life to have, and I still don't know.
Cautionary tale #2:
I recently met a fairly pretty, social worker girl. She works for an organisation that helps women in need – mostly (but really only) prostitutes. Now this meeting, unknown to me at the time, was a set-up. I had been single for a while, and so this 'bumping into each other' was orchestrated. “So, what do you do,” she obviously asked to know if I make enough for IB schooling. Thankfully, I'm not a writer, and so she was impressed. Writers don't make a lot. The martyr then told me a little bit of what she does, none of it interesting. But still, I was curious about how she decided 'help' was going to be her way of life.
“Oh, I always knew.”
This chick, man; her life boils down to a sob story of growing up across the road from Congress House. Growing up watching prostitutes, their customers, hearing their stories. She had prostitute friends (“No, you're a whore!”). She was told they were dancers. But then, when old enough to know what's what, she was told what's what. And she just knew. “I'll build my own life... with
blackjack and...” Go to hell.
A 15-year-old shouldn't decide what you do with your life. 30-year-old me still can't decide! I mean I can't even decide where I'm going with this article FFS. I'm just getting angrier, and ANGRIER with every word. What am I angry about?
Cautionary tale #3:
I know someone whose father runs a mustard seed oil business – making? exporting? packaging? – I don't know. What I do know is this friend has always known she will take over her father's business.
This isn't about her not having a choice. She totally does. Her older brother (a boy!) has steered himself clear from taking any such 'family' responsibility, and is still very much in the will. So why does she do this? Better yet, why does a chartered accountant, who 'studied Stateside', want to do anything with mustard seed oil?
“I always felt like I should. I owe him.”
My father is a raging alcoholic. It's a good thing I'm not wired this way.
I'm not really wired any way. People look at this as having given up. It's far from that. The way I see it, it's the people who've decided what they want to do for the rest of their lives who've given up.
I'm going to be an astronaut. Or maybe just a writer. I have options.
Cautionary tale #4:
My cousin joined the seminary. After Altar Servers Camp, he always knew.
By Dominic S.
Image source: NowRunning.com