I keep going back to this memory anytime I am about to do something new. I am siting in class, chatting with my friends, and everyone is talking about a dream they have. Someone says they want to run their own company one day, and another one talks about how incredible and rewarding it would be if they could simply travel the world and experience the nomadic life. I nodded, oohed and aahed along with the rest of the amazed looks. When it was time for me to chime in, I said something about wanting to have a comic strip published in the newspaper. And then I said that I wanted to write a cute fun comic book, and it’s going to be based on our daily lives. Everyone looked at me with eyes wide open, filled with excitement. Someone said, OH MY GOD, LET’S DO THAT!! It would be so much fun.
I don’t know why I always go back to that memory. I am a dreamer, this isn’t new. I want to be and do everything. I am not even exaggerating on that one. I haven’t always known what l wanted to do. But I mostly thought that what I wanted to do wasn’t an option for me. We tend to push down those desires we can’t imagine ever being able to experience in this lifetime. For many reasons I won’t get into. Maybe that memory represents one of my first dreams, where I actually took initiative and worked towards something. Do I have a comic book? No, I don’t. Not for lack of trying. We played around with the idea for a while. I even drew up some characters, and my friends came up with a couple of plots. A few weeks later, no one was talking about the comic book. It was completely normal that no one was talking about it anymore.
How quickly we forget about our dreams! How easily we move on and get lost in a life we’re kinda ok with. How sad we feel when it suddenly hits us, our dream, we let go of it, and we don’t even know where it all went wrong. I genuinely feel like crying after writing that sentence. I’ve given up on many dreams. I’ve moved on from them, and I suffered a sadness so intense from a realization that a dream, simply was.
Any time a dream meant change, that dream threatened my comfort zone. What dream doesn’t mean change? There’s no such thing right? Isn’t that an oxymoron? Anything worth having requires a morsel of effort. But I realized not too long ago that dreams don’t turn into reality because of one small word, with deadly effects; fear. I read somewhere that fear is False Evidence Appearing to be Real. Get it, FEAR!!
You get a gnawing feeling in your stomach and you’re paralyzed by the sudden inability to think clearly. Questions fog up your mind, which is already filled with all the little things that might go wrong. Also, for no apparent reason, you’re thinking about that one story someone told you about a random dude that failed. You can’t even remember why that dude failed. Nothing good is coming out of your head. At this moment all you want to do is retreat back into your hole. Oh hi, hello there ostrich.
To say that I’ve been there and done that, is the biggest understatement of the century. I like to think that I am strong, collected, wise and reasonable. I am all of those things when it comes to other people. However, as soon as my brain realizes that it’s me we’re talking about, it freezes and comes up with shitty answers and failure stories.
I’ve read a ton of quotes about fear, and they all say the same thing. Let go of your fear and basically everything will be ok. Gee, thanks, that helps A LOT! There are so many reasons why fear is where we end up whenever we experience new things. Expectations can’t help the situation either. Maybe all of this is coming up because I turned 30 a few days ago, not that I feel differently. Perhaps it’s all coming back to me because when I was sitting in that classroom, thinking about dreams, I thought that even if I didn’t do it then, I’d do it eventually. And the fact that 10 years later, that comic book idea still floats about in my head, should say something.
All I want to say is that I hope the next 10 years are not wasted on false evidence appearing to be real.
PS: Fun fact, 2006 is when I started drawing classes, took up photography as a hobby, and started writing a blog (long gone now as I deleted it). 10 years ago, during my young college years, is when I started embracing my creativity. I was the class photographer, and I have so many pictures from those years. I thought I’d share some of them in this post. It’s only fair.