some old geezer once reprimanded me.
Grow up. Grow up? Hmmmm, grow up. I could tell from his particular parlance that he meant to grow up and put childish dreams behind me and go get a real job. But grow up. Grow up. Isn’t growing up being the person who can achieve wild dreams? Isn’t growing up, growing upward—like a vine can grow up the wall—and not just older, not even just more mature, as I’m sure the man was implying?
But was I supposed to give up on the dream? What if I packed my bags and left five minutes before the call that’d change everything? Unlike Lala Land, I didn’t always necessarily have a man in my life who’d come after me to let me know that a major casting director wanted to see me.
But then was holding on to the dream of that call magical thinking? Or was it holding true to my dreams? Or….
Isn’t it enough to want something with all your heart? Isn’t it enough to hang in there year after year, keeping a great attitude and not giving up? Or….
Maybe we can’t get it wrong, I thought in one of my rare moments when I wasn’t feeling like a sponge that’d been wrung out way too many times. Whatever we do..... here we are. Loving, living, laughing, learning—no matter what we’re doing, those things don’t have to stop. And everything we do leads us…somewhere.
I once read an article about Condoleezza Rice, which said that when folks would ask her how she got to where she was, she’d say something along the lines of, “Well, first you fail at being a piano major.” How crazy great is that? She loved playing the piano, obviously, but her soul had other plans. Maybe the piano just kept her busy and happy while her being was being sculpted into being a person who could be Secretary of State. (Lots of being in there!)
And that old dude who told me to grow up? He probably gave up his dream too soon and always regretted it. People can turn into pickles when their creative juices are not allowed to flow. We can always tell the ones who’ve soured—they’re the ones who are discouraging us. And me pursuing my dreams might’ve made him sad, but it’s easier to be mad than sad. He actually wasn’t all that old age-wise—just way old before his time. Giving up the dream can do that to people.
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