I Dreamwalk Into The Crossroads Of Reality

Building a career is perhaps one of the the easiest things to achieve in life. At least I've always seen is as an simple thing to do. All you do is realise what it is you want to do and then reach for it without pausing, without any safety net to fall back on. Sure, it's often a hard road to traverse. Ambition after all, is not without it's price to pay, but it's hardly something that's complicated.

If you're single and not planning to be attached anytime soon.

Over the past few months, with time ticking down until I start a family of my own, a certain, something has been bugging me. As a person with relentless ambition, there was never a question of where I wanted to go. There were considerations on how far I could possibly achieve alone, then with someone in my life, but never a question of whether or not I should turn away from a path I have spent more than a decade preparing and executing for. Until now that is.

Due to circumstances, I've begun to wonder if I can earn enough to support a family and the lifestyle that we would desire. Truthfully, no one goes into science, especially that of the experimental or theoretical kind for the money. If anything, to live a good life on that road, someone else had to be the main provider. But what if your partner can't be the main provider in the relationship? What then?

I do have an option now, but it involves me giving up my ambition of being a scientist. It involves me walking away from more than a decade of constant scheming, plotting, ass-kissing, favour collecting and plain old hard work to get to this point. I honestly don't know if I can do it, but I know I am willing to do it, if only for the sake of something more than just my own dreams.

Could I give up my dream for a reality that works better? It is not a question anyone should be in a position to ask themselves, but here I am asking it. In an ideal world, things like dreams and love are all we ever need to see life through, but reality is a much harsher mistress. It still needs things like pragmatism and money to put a roof over your head, clothes on your back and food on the table, more so if you want luxuries to go with it.

At this point, I can't really tell because the road before me has too many variables to consider. But if anything, not doing anything until it's too late isn't going to be good for my career either. Even if people say taking a reactive role is easier than a proactive one, it's always those that are proactive that go get somewhere in life and it's somewhere that I want to be. If anything, I'm cutting it pretty close if any decision is going to be made and I doubt I'll be alone when making this choice.

Or I could once again be taking too many things over my shoulder. Now wouldn't that be a surprise.

2 Comments

  • April 13, 2011 - 15:29 | Permalink

    This post rings too true to myself too, you know, being in the field of turtle conservation is ranked even lower than cancer research. At least the results of your years of research go to treating human beings! (I get this from people all the time)

    I don’t know whether it’s me turning 30 this year, or just the fact that I have grown up enough to realize that surviving on my meager income will not do me any good, especially when I (really) don’t have any kinds of savings every month. I have my own set of commitments, and frankly, my job isn’t paying me well enough to take care of things that I need to take care of.

    But should I stop saving turtles and start making some money so that I can think of starting a family? I don’t know. Sometimes I can’t believe I’m 30 when I can’t make simple decisions in my life.

  • April 20, 2011 - 06:54 | Permalink

    Someone once said that growing up is about tempering your idealism with compromises. It’s especially true when you have other people depending on you. By choosing to be with someone, you are giving up a part of yourself, and sometimes that means giving up your dreams too, if only to make the other person happier.

    It’s all about finding that balance between idealism and compromise. And, no, it’s not meant to be easy.

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