Realizing the dream

February 5, 2011 § 9 Comments

A few days ago, a question was brought up during dinner at one of my professors’ house (yes, indeed, he invited students to his house to have dinner, bond, and we even got to play with his adorable kids):

“If you were not doing science, what would be your alternative dream occupation?”

There, Prof V. said it. The billion dollar question for students like us. (In case you are wondering why he said “science” specifically, it is because we all attend a small private college that trains engineers and scientists. We are therefore “destined” to travel down the path of science, so to speak.)

The eight of us students contemplated on this question as we chewed quietly over the delicious lasagne, fruits & nuts salad, and warm crusty slices of bread that Mrs V. had so kindly prepared for us. At the corner of the table, Diego and Isabella silently put food in their mouths, or rather, smeared pasta sauce all over their faces.

“A professional rapper.”

“Dancer. Ballroom, jazz, ballet, modern.”

“Anything related to dinosaurs.”

A yoga teacher.”

“A painter.”

“Open a fusion cuisine restaurant.”

It was at once odd and inspiring to hear these hidden dreams coming from my fellow classmates. Although there were some that you could predict based on observing the person’s hobbies, there were others that were unexpected.

At my school, you can only find 6 types of people: Engineers, Computer Scientists, Physicists, Chemists, Mathematicians, and Biologists. We literally sleep, breathe, eat science. Of course we have our musicians, artists, and dancers, but for most people these are simply hobbies. I daresay that for most students here, it is indeed true that their dreams are to become successful engineers, biologists, mathematicians, physicists, chemists, computer scientists, etc., but that one question at the dinner table made me wonder how many actually want to pursue their other dreams? How many are “forced” into the science field either because (1) their parents want/expect them to, (2) job titles in these fields seem more professional and respected, or (3) they want to feel important?

I wonder.

That question directed towards us was almost like asking a 4-year-old what he/she wants to be when he/she grows up. A fireman, a police officer, a pilot, a princess, a singer, a dancer, a hair stylist…their answers come from their hearts, their inner instincts. But if you ask them again 20 years later, what would their honest answers be? Would those answers be different from what they are currently doing now? Or have they actually went ahead to pursue their dreams?

I wonder.

And then I thought of myself, how in my previous post I have realized what my heart really wants (at least for the time being), and I am actually taking mini steps towards achieving that dream. True, many people first enter the professional field to do “important” things first and earn money, and then pursue their dreams after they’ve retired. But how do they know how long they are going to live? What if tomorrow you get killed in a car accident, and you’ll never get to live your dreams? (Or, what if the world indeed ends in 2012…haha)

Life is too short and unpredictable to put off those “less important” things.

I’m not saying that you should all quit your jobs now and chase after your dreams this second (that would be too radical). Instead, realize what your dreams are, and begin making conscious little steps towards them.

Me? I’ve already taken my first baby step towards my dream.

I got accepted and now I am officially going to Yoga Thailand for my Foundation Teacher Training in June!!! This will mark the start of my journey towards becoming a yoga teacher, and I am super duper excited! I think the idea of it is what’s keeping me churning and powering through these last few months of college. As cliche as this may sound, but I can’t think of better words to describe it. This may be the end, but it’s also another beginning.

Sorry, corny I know. 😛


§ 9 Responses to Realizing the dream

  • Monet says:

    Congratulations! I’m so excited to hear that you are going to be entering into this amazing experience in a few months. It is so inspiring to hear about the steps you are taking to follow that small yet steady voice in your heart. We all would be happier if we did this more often. Thank you for sharing, sweet friend. May your Sunday be one of peace and love.

  • Kayo says:

    To be honest, I was surprised to read that you wanted to be a yoga teacher! I always knew that you loved yoga, but I honestly had no idea that it was something you wanted to do. I admire you for pursuing after what you truly love. It seriously takes a lot of courage. I am really happy for you! Remember to stop by home to visit MOI (<—重點)

  • Wei-Wei says:

    That is amazing news, Elaine! I’m so proud of you – seriously, you know what this means? It’s a new start to another period in your life, and I’m sure that you’ll find it to be one of the most satisfying and revelating times of your life. Learn lots, and just keep being awesome! I’m happy for you 😀

  • Gail says:

    I’m so excited for you!!

  • Qsterq says:

    sososo excited/proud/happy for you!
    sending some schiscka-dap support!

    (hi homeboy, i know you’ll be seeing this :D)

  • Ayla says:

    I am SO excited for you. The fact that you are willing to pursue your dream is wonderful and hugely inspiring. 🙂

  • I love the idea of following our dreams! I think back to my eight year old self and the jobs I wanted then weren’t based on money or prestige but just the things I really enjoyed. I would love it if everyone could channel that drive as adults.

    Good luck with your journey!

  • I am so proud of you. It’s so hard to just jump in and go for what you want when other “more practical” sounding things are more “logical”. I do truly believe if you do what you love then you will never regret it and you are at that perfect time in life to give it a go. At 40, I ‘ve missed the boat on my professional dream for the time being…not to say I still can’t jump in a few years down the road and start again. My personal dream is perfectly on track though so I can’t feel much regret. Take care.

  • […] on earth, so that I will not regret it at the end of the day or tomorrow. Already I have taken a big, courageous leap away from dogma, not becoming the researcher, the doctor, or professor that many think I should or expect me to. As […]

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