Who The World Says I Should Be

I have been thinking a lot about the person I am and the person that I want to be. Yesterday, I wrote about an important quote in my life. And today, found a second quote that made me want to write further on sort of the same topic.

“Can you remember who you were before the world told you who you should be?”

I’d like to think that I always knew that being a writer was in my future. I remember a grade-school classmate of mine mentioning she and I knew how to read when we went into kindergarten. I remember my babysitter telling me stories from R.L. Stine’s Fear Street series. My mother is an avid reader. My dad reads from time to time, and it tends to be the classics. Stories were part of my life since the beginning.

However, there have been times that I’ve wanted other things. In high school, I tried my hand at singing and acting. I attempted to play guitar for the first time. I wanted to be a star of some sort. I wanted to appease the masses with my acting or songs. I wanted to be famous. I think that’s what it comes down to. I wanted to be seen.

A lot of this comes from the fact I did not feel like I was seen much in the early years in my life. This caused me to end up exploding in late college. I needed to be seen and refused to not be. It also made me a bit of an ass if people ignored me. But, these things were important to me.

I remember watching an episode of Buffy the Vampire Slayer and seeing Nicholas Brendan playing Xander. There was something fun and compassionate about him. He was normal. He was the every man, but he was just as important as everyone else in the group. I wanted to play that character for people to latch on to and feel connected to. I did not need to be the hero, but that did not make the character I could play any less heroic.

In college, I had someone basically tell me that I should stick with writing and not act. I took it to heart, and for a while threw myself into writing. It fell to the wayside and waned as many thins did in college. I just remember her standing there talking to me in the kitchen of the house we rented. We took acting together. She stood there and with this Shirley Temple look, but it almost felt kind of malicious. Then again, she was killing a dream I once had.

I did act after that. Since reading “A MidSummer Night’s Dream” for the first time, I wanted to play Lysander. My friend ended up directing a production of it, and I ended up getting the role I wanted with his wife playing Hermia. I tried my hand at it a couple other times, but really, I had already lost interest in it. I played my role and then moved on.

My life is writing. That much remains. I think that is the person that the world keeps pressing me towards. It’s also the one thing that has never gotten in the way. I have not always had the time I do now, but it has always been waiting for me. I may no longer want to be a Nicholas Brendan character, but I do want to write such a person. Subtle changes keep my dreams alive. And this is the life no longer waiting for me. I’m living it.

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