And it was precisely these properties that were praised. "You don't have to worry about her," people said to my parents, and everyone swelled with pride. If nobody understood me, I would learn a new language. If my accent was a barrier, then – crap! – Suddenly I sounded American. If my bank balance was $ 900 for a month I would figure out how to reverse it.
I pursued the culmination of conquering things that seemed impossible, which led me to the entertainment industry. Cracking the codes into his impenetrable world made me think I was going to win and then thrive until those conversations with my boss started to destroy that perception. I realized I had a dream job – it just wasn't mine.
When she suggested that I could be happier, that I could envision the right life for myself and get it, my mind went blank. I had ignored my feelings in order to achieve the next goal through college, law school, and a prestigious job. My wandering childhood made me seek stability most of all, but what were my dreams? "Don't you want to write some books, do you have some kids?" she said casually and I froze. It sounded perfect. But the idea of actively seeking happiness was terrifying. What if i failed?
I had spent so long with the waves of external events that once they were silent I didn't know what to do. Technically, a lifetime of perseverance convinced me that I was tough enough to handle anything. But I didn't want to. For the first time I allowed myself to say that. I didn't know if there was a job that could make me happier, but it was worth looking for.
I just knew that my real love was reading and writing. I knew words on a page made me happy and I was looking for more of that feeling. The joy of discussing ideas, scripting those ideas and then displaying them on the screen became my new role. It suddenly felt so silly, so luxurious, not to be in pure survival mode – to have created the space to think about what was good for me.
I started producing and had a baby. But soon I felt the old dissatisfaction creeping in again, making other people's dreams come true, but not my own. And this time I trusted my feelings enough not to ignore them. This wasn't the kind of challenge I was supposed to be facing. It was one that made it necessary to look inside myself clearly. The joy I had in my work had successfully destroyed the hard shell of my endurance, leaving happiness in the cracks and shedding light on the discomfort that pushed out. Still, I couldn't admit what I wanted.
So I spent some time punching around, groaning, and wishing out loud that the world – someone, everyone – would tell me what to do next. After months of this charade, my husband, a professional writer, led me to list five people whose careers I admired. That was easy. "They are all writers," he said. "Do you think that means something?"