The Word If Doesn't Exist in My World

3.08.2013
...Nothing's gonna change my world.

I catch myself correcting people all the time.

"If you make it Tish..."

"No, you mean WHEN I make it."

"Oh yeah, when you make it..." (chuckle, sarcasm)

You have to be pretty darn hardheaded to keep at this stuff as long as I have. While working today I had a flashback to Jr. High...sweeping the kitchen floor and dreaming about the day I'd be cleaning my own kitchen, but as an honest-to-goodness real actor. Through the years I'll come back to that kitchen moment. I'll be cleaning something and smile to myself...still cleaning...still dreaming...for the love of GOD still hoping.

Some of those smile attempts are harder than others. Both auditions from last week required a weekend waiting period. I wouldn't find out about either until the Tuesday after. That Tuesday I went about my day, but every once in awhile I'd stop and make a wish, "Please, please PLEASE let me book one of those jobs!"

But I never got the phone call.

I wonder how close I am to making it. Jersey's talking about buying a home and having kids and I wonder if he'll start to resent my dreams and how unable I am to wish for anything else until I get that one. While I want children and a home I'm suffering from tunnel vision. I have both eyes and my heart set on one thing and one thing only...The fact that my personal life and my dream could possibly collide is a scary subject lately. I can't even think about it for long without shutting down. I'm too afraid of a possible scenario. The other day I read this great piece about Ang Lee...figured I'd share the hope and spirit I found. For all my fellow dreamers out there with families:

Ang Lee: A Never-Ending Dream

"In 1978, as I applied to study film at the University of Illinois, my father vehemently objected. He quoted me a statistic: ‘Every year, 50,000 performers compete for 200 available roles on Broadway.’ Against his advice, I boarded a flight to the U.S. This strained our relationship. In the two decades following, we exchanged less than a hundred phrases in conversation. Some years later, when I graduated film school, I came to comprehend my father’s concern. It was nearly unheard of for a Chinese newcomer to make it in the American film industry. Beginning in 1983, I struggled through six years of agonizing, hopeless uncertainty. Much of the time, I was helping film crews with their equipment or working as editor’s assistant, among other miscellaneous duties. My most painful experience involved shopping a screenplay at more than thirty different production companies, and being met with harsh rejection each time. That year, I turned 30. There’s an old Chinese saying: ‘At 30, one stands firm.’ Yet, I couldn't even support myself. What could I do? Keep waiting, or give up my movie-making dream? My wife gave me invaluable support. My wife was my college classmate. She was a biology major, and after graduation, went to work for a small pharmaceutical research lab. Her income was terribly modest. At the time, we already had our elder son, Haan, to raise. To appease my own feelings of guilt, I took on all housework – cooking, cleaning, taking care of our son – in addition to reading, reviewing films and writing scripts. Every evening after preparing dinner, I would sit on the front steps with Haan, telling him stories as we waited for his mother – the heroic huntress – to come home with our sustenance (income). This kind of life felt rather undignified for a man. At one point, my in-laws gave their daughter (my wife) a sum of money, intended as start-up capital for me to open a Chinese restaurant – hoping that a business would help support my family. But my wife refused the money. When I found out about this exchange, I stayed up several nights and finally decided: This dream of mine is not meant to be. I must face reality. Afterward (and with a heavy heart), I enrolled in a computer course at a nearby community college. At a time when employment trumped all other considerations, it seemed that only a knowledge of computers could quickly make me employable. For the days that followed, I descended into malaise. My wife, noticing my unusual demeanor, discovered a schedule of classes tucked in my bag. She made no comment that night. The next morning, right before she got in her car to head off to work, my wife turned back and – standing there on our front steps – said, ‘Ang, don’t forget your dream.’ And that dream of mine – drowned by demands of reality – came back to life. As my wife drove off, I took the class schedule out of my bag and slowly, deliberately tore it to pieces. And tossed it in the trash. Sometime after, I obtained funding for my screenplay, and began to shoot my own films. And after that, a few of my films started to win international awards. Recalling earlier times, my wife confessed, ‘I’ve always believed that you only need one gift. Your gift is making films. There are so many people studying computers already, they don’t need an Ang Lee to do that. If you want that golden statue, you have to commit to the dream.’ And today, I’ve finally won that golden statue. I think my own perseverance and my wife’s immeasurable sacrifice have finally met their reward. And I am now more assured than ever before: I must continue making films. You see, I have this never-ending dream."


1 comments:

  1. i'll always be here following your dreams. you'll make it and i'll be right there with you

    ReplyDelete

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