Sunday, January 20, 2008

When I Grow Up...

Growing up I wanted to be many things. My family would tell you that Janet Jackson was my icon. I wanted to sing and dance like her. I would pretend that I knew the words to the song (make up words really) and have a little routine that I would perform. I loved Madonna too, but Janet Jackson looked like me, someone I could be.

As I go older the idea of being an entertainer never really left me, I still kept begging my mother for dance lessons, and by the time I was 10 years old I finally got my wish. Before that I had the idea of becomming a mad scientist like Einstein- I don't know where that came from. And I was busy proving to everyone that I was a tom boy while I poked frogs, played with Barbie dolls and made up imaginary games where I usually played a hero like Peter Pan come to rescue sweet Wendy from Captain Hook.

By the time I was 11yrs. I had grown out of imaginary games, boys were swooning into the picture and I could not share with my friends the things I had to face at home. So i began to write- stories, poetry, letters. Dancing and writing became my expression of all I could not say or simply didn't know how to say. I used to sing out loud too and with a lot of gusto but after being laughed at in a talent show, I refused to sing in public again. But that was ok, if I could not be Janet Jackson, at least I could be her back up dancer.

My parents in the meantime had high hopes for me. I was argumentative, I never thought I was wrong and I had a smart mouth so they thought I'd make a perfect lawyer. I'd go to school, get my education, be successful, independent, have a high paying job and live a meaningful, comfortable life. What some people don't know about me is that I live up to my birth sign in the sense that I really am two fish swimming in opposite directions. I was rebellious but I was a people pleaser. I wanted to maintain whatever semblence of peace I could in the home, so I did as asked, I studied hard, I respected myself and I even did law at BCC but I hated it and I didn't fit in.

I started to dread going to dance class. My haven turned into a nightmare once I went into my senior jazz class. It was the first time in my dance career that I felt untalented, unmotivated and unnattractive. I simply didn't love it anymore. Nothing I did was good enough, no matter how hard I tried, no matter how hard I practiced, I was relegated to a position at the back of the group. I was heartbroken and disillusioned. I started skipping classes and eventually I left. Dance just didn't provide that release anymore. So it was time for a change- I was going to heal the world.

I could be a writer, but what kind of living could I make with an English degree. I was good at Spanish so I would maintain that, it is always good to have a second language and dancing- if I could get myself back into the groove again- could always be pursued on the side as a hobby. I could not make a living doing that either, especially if I was not that good. Not if I was going to be sucessful, independent and financially set- at least I would be making a difference in the world.

These were the kind of thoughts that were running through my head. I wanted the kind of life my parents wanted for me. I also secretly wanted to be happily married, and have a job that I absolutely loved- whatever that was. I would be good at it, one of the best and I would only marry if I found someone who would not demand that I fit into the mould of who they thought I should be. But someone I could be me around, someone who would love me for me, push me to live my dream- he would have to be my soulmate. I refused to settle, and i was true to my word. I did not want to repeat the mistakes of my parents. That's when I met Nigel.

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