“Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines, sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.” – Mark Twain

This post is something of a journal entry/getting my thoughts out/justifying to myself etc etc.. It quite personal, but I don’t have that many readers so I’m not too fussed about revealing too much or whatnot.

Anyway… Sometimes I feel as if I’ve messed up my life. No, scratch that.. I know I have. Under-achieving, disappointment, failure.. all those words can be used to describe me. I never worked hard at my studies. Lazy and unmotivated, I always took things as they came. I never really gave my future much thought. I didn’t get really good marks for my uni entrance exams, so I ended up starting with B. Social Science (don’t ask me what this is, I have no idea), then I transferred to do B. Arts. majoring in international business and Chinese. I never enjoyed going to uni and in hindsight, I don’t think I was suited to go. I struggled the first few years of uni, continually failing subject after subject. My mom kept on asking “When are you graduating?”, and I could never give her a definite answer. Finally I got suspended from uni. I couldn’t go back for a year.. so what did I end up doing? More study!! Stupid eh? but what else could I do? So I spent the next three and a half years trying to study accounting at a different uni. Got suspended from that as well because once again, studying was not my thing and numbers was definitely not my thing. After that I went back to the first uni and asked them to let me back in.. thankfully they did. I didn’t want to go back, but my mom wanted me to get my degree, and many people I spoke with also said that I might as well finish it off. I only had a years worth of subjects to go, but that ended up taking me two years to finish. So after ten years of “studying” I finally got my degree.. But what can I do with an Arts degree?? It’s quite difficult to find a job with such a general degree. For the last couple of years I’ve been working really shitty jobs part-time whilst studying. Currently I’m bouncing from place to place as a temp-staff.. Not much job security, but I have no choice.

So back in January when I was unemployed, I began looking at doing internships, particularly ones in China. Reason for this is because I just want to get out of here. Home life is so stifling.. (it really doesn’t help that my mom constantly reminds me that I need to get a boyfriend and get married right now!! since I’m at that age where if I don’t get hitched in a couple of years, I’ll become spinster etc etc). The other reason is because I wanted some work experience in a proper company… something that actually looks decent on the resume. I ended up applying for two internships. The first one said ‘thanks but no thanks’. The second one contacted me almost two months later asking if I was still interested. I wrote back saying yes but I couldn’t come immediately due to various reasons. That probably put them off since I didn’t hear back from them. A month later I got another email from a different person at the same company asking me if I was interested and when I could come. I told them I could come immediately. A few emails and a phone call later, I was offered the internship (in the Human Resources department at a big Chinese company).

Sometimes I feel like that picture above, where the train has gone and left without me. Everyone around me has become successful at what they do.. all my friends are either getting married or soon to be…they own property or are considering buying. Here I am still nothing. I am at an age where most people are stable in their chosen fields, but I am just starting out in what I hope may become a career. I’ve wasted so much of my life…

So in under three weeks, I’ll be flying out.. pretty much starting a new life in a new city. I really really hope it works out. Most people have been supportive of my decision to go. Some people were like’WTF??! There is no money in this!!..why are you wasting your time doing this?!’.. The way I saw this was, if I stay here I would have gone from one mundane job to another.. there was no future here for me. By taking this chance to go over to China, if I try and work hard enough, there will be opportunities for me to become something. I didn’t want to look back and say ‘what if?’… By doing this, I will grow up, become an adult, independent and maybe I will finally feel better about myself. My self-esteem right now is pretty low because of the constant reminders from everyone about how much I have under-achieved. Year after year after year of nosy asian parents asking my mom ‘Has your daughter graduated yet?’.. After a while it just became easier for my mom to lie and say ‘yes, she has graduated’.. After that people started asking ‘What is your daughter doing now?’.. That answer also became a lie.. It was embarrassing to tell people what I really did, even I couldn’t bring myself to tell people, so we just said ‘office admin’.. which I did end up doing for a while. Why are asian parents so nosy?

So yeah, this internship will be for eight months and hopefully I can land a job at the end of it as well. Fingers crossed…


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5 Responses to Changes…

  1. Joojoobees says:

    I wish you the best of luck.

    Try to not beat yourself up too much over taking a different path through life. You are not your peers, nor are you your parents. Even the richest person in the world, and the person who has the most titles, can point to somebody else that achieved something they did not.

    • Jo says:

      Thanks Joojoobees for your kind and thoughtful words.. means a lot to me.

      It’s hard to not get down about it sometimes, but what’s done is done and I have to live with those decisions that I made. Right now, I’m optimistic and excited.. I don’t have anything to lose (except maybe the anime lol.. hopefully I can still watch anime over there..)

      Thank you.

  2. shrutianime says:

    True about nosy Asian parents. 😦
    I’ve yet to start off on my life and people ask me what kind of future I’ll have.. (I’m going for an Arts degree as well..)
    I do understand some of your feelings there, I really wish you all the very best for your internship, and hope it turns out really well.
    Fight Oh!!!

    • Jo says:

      Thank you! Yeah, I always thought it was very hard to answer people when they asked ‘what are you going to do?’. All I can say is, I wish you the best as well. Fingers crossed for the both of us.

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