An Ode to Ambition

I think I can be certain when I say that I’m not the only one who has ever felt wishy-washy about what I want to do in life. We live in a world full of opportunities with so many different, diverse, and possibly even strangely peculiar people who enter our lives and bring us some sort of “new vision,” that it’s hard not to want to become a part of that vision.

It may just be the chameleon in me that sees myself in any venture I wish to take, though, I find I’ve always been notorious for losing myself to my imagination when reality begins to slow down and I’m able to breathe within my own element, causing me to become victim to it. I lose my ground and begin to “flounder”–speaking in terms of the Pisces–in my imagination, dreaming up wild things all to my heart’s content. One day I establish I’m a writer. The next day I want to be rock-and-roll musician, to a screenwriter, to a film journalist, to someone on TV… I want to do it all! (And I suppose this goes with my mutable nature, always opposing a draggish routine…) What do these patterns say about me? Why am I so obsessed with this world of entertainment? Music? And creative pursuits? And why would imagining a life without it be like hell?

I talked to myself in the mirror the other day. Now, don’t get all creeped out by me before I have the chance to explain… I’ve never done this before, but it’s strange how wondrous the experience can be! When you look yourself in the mirror, and look yourself in the eyes, and really talk to yourself as if you’re mentoring yourself, giving advice, reasoning with the ramblings that go on in your head, figuring out what it is you want to do, and seeing yourself saying it to yourself. Through seeing yourself saying these things, it makes those loose ideas in your head all the more real. For once, you have something to hold onto and grasp: the witness of your admittance.

Too often we come across things that we wish we did or we wish we had, but it’s only natural. As we grow up, we lose our childhood innocence and aptness for making mistakes, all because we grow insecure of ourselves. Reputations are at stake, responsibilities must be upheld, and it’s not always a scratch on the knee or pat on the back to get us back up and moving; things hold us down–perhaps ourselves–and we create reasons to not do something. Why? Because we want to hear that “No” so we don’t feel as bad for not having what we don’t have. Because we want to take the easy way out and believe that our fates are leading us elsewhere. Or, if you’re on that high-horse, it gives you more will-power and motivation to do just what they tell you not to: rebellion.

It made sense to me the other day when I had a conversation with myself. Constantly, I’m reassured. Other days, I’m dissuaded. But, I’m always falling more and more in love with my loves–my ambitions. I once heard (from a bluebird) that your passions are those that come easily to you–those that make sense to you because it plainly works with your nature. I ask myself: Why is it I’ve always been drawn to spirituality? To wisdom? To depths of knowledge? And why is it that my hand is best tried at when writing? When crafting? When performing a learned composition, or dance sequence?

My guitar teacher long ago told me that there’s just something in me that is able to connect my mind to my hands that lets me play the guitar so easily–something that came naturally to me. He linked it to coming from my 7 years practice of cultural dancing. Soon after, my sophomore English teacher urged me to pursue my writing because she saw a gift. And, that reminded me of what my teacher told me during my eighth-grade graduation:

“Rachel Cauilan may seem quiet, but that doesn’t mean she has little to say. Her writing reveals that there is a lot going on, and there is great depth of wisdom and a generous heart inside.”

Sometimes, when I begin to “lose” myself, I look back at my middle school days to find where I was grounded–what I’m rooted in. I find that love in Faith, God, and pure goodness–things that J.E.M. taught me. I find that love for upbringings, culture, and community–things that Kariktan instilled in me. And, as I grew older, I began to take notice of the things I do that others pointed out in me, whether it be the writing I so nonchalantly performed, the guitar I nagged out of my brothers’ hands, or the ‘acts of kindness’ that kept me aware of the people surrounding me.

I may not say much, do much, or really act much, but, I can say that I am living. I am aware. I am here. And I am fully present in this wonderful thing we call life.

And, with a face-to-face encounter with the mirror, perhaps I have realized that all I really want to do with these ‘ambitions’ I have written is create a story. After all, entertainment is the creation of what one has produced for another; and, with my 8 years of blogging, 7 years of dancing, 5 years of guitar-playing, and 19 years of pure living, all I really want to do is share a story–share a message–with You all. Whether it be a lesson learnt, something experienced, or something that made me laugh, cry, feel… My life is in Art, and Art is for sharing. (What good is my gift (the Lord grants us these, right?) if they can’t be shared?) My love, my upbringing, my faith, my belief, my hope, my dreams, my anguish, my mortality… I think it’s good to remind myself why exactly I write: Hello, my name is Rachel Cauilan and I just want to make a testament of my life growing up, from all the people, places, things, and feelings I’ve known, and to give a little piece of myself, and my love, to you. I hope you enjoy.

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