Saturday, May 31, 2008

Holding Back Dreams

A friend of mine recently had to make a decision of huge importance -- whether to stay with his girlfriend or pursue his life-long dream of becoming a tattoo artist. His sister, his ex-gf and I pushed him to "ditch the bitch," so to speak, and follow his path to greatness.

In my mind, I was appalled that she would even consider asking him to choose her or his dream, because to me, if you love someone, it is your place to push them toward their dreams. Even if their goal is not one that is particularly savory or important to you.

In the end, he took our advice. He approached his gf, told her he wanted to continue pursuing tattooing... and she conceded and realized that she was stupid and selfish for having asked him to choose in the first place.

Victory. He got love and dreams in one fell swoop.

Yoshi has always pushed me to be more than I am. He so wants my business to take off and I know he gets frustrated when I don't work on it. But to me, I get frustrated BECAUSE he's pushing me -- when he should be pushing himself.

He's always wanted to sing. To be a singer. In Asia, specifically. And I honestly, truly believe that he can do it. And it pisses me off since I've found so many opportunities for him to move closer to his dream. When I lived in Japan, I had a friend who was following his dream to be a jazz singer/songwriter. He is still pursuing that dream and had offered, at the time, to help me send out Yoshi's demos, since he already had all the connections.

Yoshi never gave me a demo.

In more recent years, Yoshi has had the opportunity to sing in front of Sony executives with ties in the music industry. They heard his voice. Loved it. And told him to submit a demo. We never gave them a demo.

And today, when I talked to him about it -- I found out part of the reason why he hasn't moved forward with his dream. Because if he does, he won't be able to give me the attention that I need.

Admittedly, I'm an attention whore when it comes to relationships. I'm needy. (Totally shitty realization when it hit me.) I think that in so many situations, I've found myself being put on a back-burner when compared to other things, that now, I demand being number one. I need to be the most important thing in my significant other's life. Because, no matter what I'm doing, I try to make it a point that THEY be the most important thing in MY life.

And when I'm put on the side -- even if they don't mean to put me there -- I feel it acutely. And I begin the self-hate thing. Totally unhealthy, I know. It's the years of being told "you're not good enough" and being put on the sidelines within my own family, I'm sure, that makes me the needy thing I am.

So then it hit me. I'm holding him back.

He always said he was holding me back from realizing my dreams. But he asked me today,"what is your dream?" And my answer? "I don't really have one anymore." And it's true. I don't. So obviously, he's not holding me back from anything.

So it made me think about my friend's dilemma. Girlfriend? Or dream? The difference is, that she was making him choose, hoping that he'd choose her. In this case, because I love him, I want him to choose his dream. Even though it'd suck to be me when that day comes because I know that I'd be losing him.

I realized today, while we were having that conversation, that it was almost like asking him to leave me.

Of course, that wasn't my intent. I fought so hard to be with him. I've been fighting for the last 7 years to keep him. And I wouldn't have fought so hard if only to have him leave me again.

But I believe his dream is... right.... there. And the only thing standing in the way... is me.

I guess it's a subject we'll deal with when he returns from Kuwait. He'll be back on the island in 18 days. It'll be good to have him home again.

I wonder if, in the end, home = with me... or on the road.


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