Perhaps the greatest cliché in all humanity would be: Live your life to the fullest.
But in all honesty, the main reasons why clichés even exist in the first place, is because they are built on the foundations of truth.
#Throwback to 2012, when I was a skinny 17-year-old with, barely any ass to cushion potential falls. I enrolled myself in the humanities (because I wanted to) and I aspired to be a hotshot lawyer (because my mother wanted me to). Being a stereotypical Asian, disobeying my parents’ wishes for my future, was tantamount to Hitler exterminating the Jews back in 1939. When the Empress Dowager of my life spoke, my role was to simply shut up and listen.
#Flashforward 365 days later, when my personal epiphanies shot out of my head like cannon balls and exploded dramatically right at my face. The truth is, I could never ever envision myself playing the role of a corporate robot, mechanically drafting sheets and stacks of Affidavits, and in hideous court shoes at that!
The point that I am trying to make here, is that the lives we have, need not necessarily be shaped and determined by the ambitions and desires of other people. If the path to hell is paved with good intentions, then by allowing our destinies and futures to be controlled in the hands of others, we would most definitely be orchestrating the fiascos of our ruined futures. The genetics, which make up who we are, are provided by both sets of parents. We are neither identical to our fathers, nor are we clones of our mothers. Therefore, we should not allow our parents to “relive” their dreams through us. We were created, not resurrected. We are not the living embodiments of “second chance” for them to correct the follies of their pasts.
Mind you, I am not promoting any sort of hedonistic lifestyle to be adopted by youth. I am fully aware of the amount of hate generated towards the “narcissistic, materialistic Generation X”. What I am trying to say is, do not let anyone else’s hopes, overshadow your own. Do not let anyone repress your personal voice. Do not allow yourself to become just anyone’s Coppelia.
I remember the day I told my mother that I no longer wanted to be a lawyer. In fact, I remember explicitly telling her I would rather “marry a pig farmer and live in a barn” than pursue law in the future. Needless to say, she immediately grasped the back of her nape, and proceeded to loudly proclaim that she could feel her “blood pressure soaring”.
My mother has yet to fully come to terms with my choice. Now and then, she sneakily tries to proffer other career options to me (all of which belong somewhere in the legal profession) like the colorful iced gems, which essentially share the same flavor.
I concede that it is not easy to venture out on your own, and decide for yourself what you want to pursue in the future. But as is often said, ‘live your life to the fullest’. All those barriers we perceive are nothing more but man-made creations. Take your chances, step back, and then take a huge leap forward. Erase those boundaries, and draw your own frontiers.