So here’s the thing. In 31 days, I am turning twenty-four. Now that’s not that big of a milestone, but for someone who had spent her entire senior year planning to kill herself before graduation, every tiny milestone seems like a huge accomplishment. In the past few months, through my worsening mental state, I have thought about what I need to do to better myself. My New Year’s Resolution for this year is: Write More, Cook More, BE MORE. For the first time in my very short life, I have found a resolution that I really want to accomplish, not just in this year, but also for the rest of my life.
In October of 2012, I had found myself in a very bad situation where one little mistake has made it impossible for me to continue down a path I had set for myself 12 months prior. Now while it’s not ACTUALLY impossible for me to keep on with that goal, I don’t want to put myself in that position to feel that way again, at least for the time being. I know that eventually, I will have to learn to take risks and accept the consequences of my actions, but I need to take baby steps. In wanting to avoid the subject with my father, I pretended to continue with the activity but was really just moping about the Antelope Valley. That was when I found it. INSPIRATION.
It was during this time that I started to write a story that has been stewing in my brain since 2007. I’ve always wanted to be a writer, but the fear of criticism has always held me back. I have started and stopped hundreds of stories since the second grade, never finding my voice until now. Perhaps that’s why my blogs or journals got much attention, even though I’d start so many. I set to the task of writing the story that was in my head and in November, I participated in National Novel Writing Month. I would write by hand and then type them again at night, editing as I went along. It was going so well until I realized my keyboard was acting wonky.
I had been having a lot of trouble typing with my keyboard, which would send my little … what is that thing called again? Indent marker? … to places where it shouldn’t, breaking my concentration and making trouble for me. I decided to clean my keyboard because I hadn’t done it in ages. In the process of cleaning, I broke off not one but eight keys. I fixed the issue, but have become dejected and haven’t wanted to type on this since the end of November. At least I was able to type down 12000+ words and set up a decent beginning, middle, and end (as well as the first scene of book two). And now I am less afraid to put my ideas down “on paper.” I’d really like to finish Valentina (the tentative title of my novel) before the end of the year, but I’m realistic and would just like to finish a few chapters before I get ahead of myself.
I had been in quite a bit of a slump most of December when right before Christmas, I got the urge to learn how to cook. I don’t know if it was the fact that I felt terrible for my dad who has had to eat fast food and ramen for most of the time that my mother is working or if it was that I was the one who was sick of eating out, but I began my journey with the traditional Filipino dish called nilaga. It looked weird and had too much broth, but my dad ate it and he didn’t get food poisoning or die, so I count it as a success.
Since then I’ve been manic cooking, even going to Ikea to buy some new things that I probably should have bought locally, but I was going out of town anyways and besides, who doesn’t love getting lost in Ikea? I have made a few meals and LOTS of desserts and confirmed my suspicions that I prefer baking to cooking. I’m thinking it’s because it’s more exact than cooking dinners. I have a dream of opening up a sweet shop/bakery because I like sweets and I’m hoping to become an accomplished pan de sal maker in the next few weeks. I’m to the point that I have enlisted my friends to be “test subjects” in my endeavors and while that feeling of giving up before failing has been breathing down my neck since I gave them away yesterday, I have taken my first constructive criticism quite well (thanks Jenn!). So my current cooking goals for the next few weeks are: Zuppa Toscana, jambalaya, TARDIS blue velvet cake (or cake pops), pan de sal, and a recipe for a nutella bundt cake with nutella ganache. Can someone tell me how to make nutella stand out in baking? Because I’m currently having problems with it.
And now it comes to the end of the resolution: BE MORE. I was in the shower (where my most inspirational writing comes to me, though I’ve never actually done what I’m doing now – writing it down) when I was thinking about what I should try and do when I finally go back to school. I’ve taken many classes in a broad range of subjects, though I’m still unsure about what to do with my life (assuming I get well enough to continue with it) and this time I have to commit to the choice. I’m not getting any younger after all.
I know I don’t want to go into the medical field. I’ve tried it and I realize while I have tons of respect for nurses (shout out to all my nursing student friends who have graduated, are graduating, or are in the program!), my heart was never in taking care of people for a living. If I do go into the health care field, I think I’d like to be behind the scenes, doing something simple like filing or fielding angry sick people’s phone calls, which is really just a job to support myself so I can do all my little “you shouldn’t waste your money on schooling” hobbies.
When I was younger, I had imagined myself in a very classy, fast paced fashion job in an office. Whether it be as the Anna Wintour of the plus sized community or the next Annie Leibovitz and take last professional photograph of a pop icon right before their murder. I honestly think I still want that, so I’ve decided to go back and try my very first college major of marketing in plans of becoming a social media manager of a cool fashion company. I think it would be loads of fun or lots of stress, but if I learned anything from yearbook, it’s that a sick part of me enjoys that kind of stress.
It wasn’t just my old high school dreams that inspired me to go back and try my hand at it again, but a once in a lifetime opportunity to see something amazing. Through the magic of social media and the great fortune of being close enough to Los Angeles, I got this opportunity and that company has a lifetime customer. I constantly look at the stuff I’ve bought from them and thank them for being so awesome.
So here’s hoping that 2013 brings me a bit of luck. It’s going to be the year of the snake right? I think that means it’s going to be a lucky year for me. I hope I can accomplish my goals and go into 2014 alive and happy(ish).