CRAZY AS THEY MAY SEEM
Despite what the title may suggest, this is not a post about La La Land. However, it is a post about dreams and failure and trying again, which is sort of the same thing. The past few years of life-changing surgery, making a decision to transfer my degree which I’d later regret, and recovering from mental health issues have taught me a lot about what I want from the short time I have on this planet. My passion for life has fluctuated at times, and facing up to my deepest desires has been a challenging experience. However, the ups and downs along the way have led me to a point in time where I can say I’ve come to accept my hopes and dreams for what they are. I’m going to give them a shot, and I’m not going be ashamed of doing so. This is the story of the evolution of a dream.
MAKING A U-TURN
Recovering from major spinal fusion means no school, no standing up for long periods, and certainly no exercise for at least a year. At this time, I was obsessed with The Lord of the Rings and its soundtrack, and for some unknown reason, I asked my parents for the piano books. Piano has never been a real interest of mine before this point, but learning those pieces, followed by Pirates of the Caribbean, followed by Beethoven’s Moonlight Sonata, followed by Debussy’s Clair de lune etc. awoke a passion for music inside me. For the next seven years, my parents couldn’t pull me away from the piano, and I fast tracked all the way to ABRSM Grade 8, picking up bassoon and classical singing along the way. By the time I was 18 years old, I lived and breathed music of all genres. When I wasn’t playing Chopin, I was uploading K-Pop covers to a surprisingly successful YouTube channel. My future was bright, and after landing a place in the prestigious music department at King’s College London, I thought my path was set in stone. My new dream was to become an opera singer, coached by the best of the best at the Royal Academy of Music. However, fate was to play her hand once more, and starting university as a confident musician in 2013 was not to be.
A STEP BACKWARDS
LEARNING, GROWING, CHANGING
At that point, I thought giving up music would be a relief. Transferring to Comparative Literature felt like a blessing – one that came with less pressure, less disappointment – but little did I know that it would be the start of the most difficult period of my life. Three years later, and I’ll soon be finishing a degree that I never really cared about. It has caused more heartache and more suffering than being stripped of my clothing, fans blowing icy cold air at me to slow the infection that was trying to kill me as a surgeon opened up my chest without anaesthetic. It’s something I never thought I would say, but in my experience, mental health problems can cause more pain than any physical suffering, and I think I’ve had my fair share of both.
FOOLS WHO DREAM
And here’s to the fools who dream
Crazy as they may seem
Here’s to the hearts that break
Here’s to the mess we make
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