Saturday, May 1, 2010

A whole lot of maybes.

Detour - 415 words
Mary Ann Loo

Twelve days ago, I turned 27. I look maybe 21, and age is really just a number, but part of me can’t help wondering if I’d settle the important things like career-path and marriage prospects by the time I turn 30. Sure, a lot can happen in three years, but we’re all aware of time’s ability to sneak by so quickly that some random event a year ago can feel like it happened only yesterday. I remember when I was 6, I wanted to be a visual artist; then Mom changed my mind to “doctor”. At 11 I wrote many stories. At 13 I adored Jim Carrey and wanted to be funny like him. At 14 I dreamt of being a Hollywood actress. 15 – a singer. 16 – songwriter. 18 and applying for college – a psychiatrist. 19 and a Psychology major – a psychologist. Pretty soon graduation was two semesters away, and I began an acting career, which I freelanced for a year, and was pretty good at it, until behind-the-scenes work started appealing to me. At 23 I was a props person for one project, then went into retail fulltime at 24, during which Mom asked if I’d like to go back to school. I’d be stupid to not say yes.

So now I’m at the end of Semester Four, pursuing songwriting, sitting in my third Nashville apartment, mulling over the detours in my haphazard life. A little over six months ago, I ended a two-and-a-half-year-long relationship with a great guy I’d presumed was The One. A little over one-and-a-half months ago, I visited a Honduran orphanage, and returned feeling like everything here was pointless. A little over a week ago, I picked up smoking again. I have no idea what I’m doing, no clue where my life is headed, not even sure if I’d ever really love some guy enough to spend the rest of my life with him.

I believe everyone has their own path, the route they’re supposed to take, but we all get sidetracked from time to time. Then again, what if these events aren’t detours at all, but part of the road itself? Would I be here if I’d be more consistent with my choices and more focused on certain goals? Would I still be who I am today? Maybe my life would’ve been better, maybe worse. Maybe I’d be married to The One, maybe some jerk.

Whatever. Right now I need to get off this detour and do some homework.

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