On Dreams and Realities
When I was five
I wanted to become a princess—
the kind of princess who lives
in a faraway kingdom,
always in between that proverbial
once upon a time
and happily ever after.
The kind of princess Disney tells stories about.
As a young girl my ultimate dream
was to be yet another
Snow White, Cinderella, or Sleeping Beauty.
And maybe it’s because all those fairy tales taught me
that if you’re pretty
and if you’re in big trouble
and if you can patiently wait for your knight in shining armor
in the end you will be happy.
But I’ve always been fat and nerdy,
which makes me far from being “Disney pretty.”
I’ve never been in big trouble either—
No evil stepmother at home,
no wicked witch in the neighborhood,
Nope, none at all.
My life was mostly simple and normal.
And in my 20 years of existence,
I’ve never ever ever laid eyes on even just the shadow
of my Prince Charming,
if he even exist at all.
So I had this mental checklist of
things I needed to be and things I needed to do
in order to be as happy as I originally hoped to.
Apparently I had a knack in making sure
nothing from the list gets checked.
And that’s okay. Did I end up happy?
Sometimes the person you think you should be
doesn’t successfully make its way to reality
Simply because circumstances would not permit.
Example: Me not being the next big Disney princess.
Good thing I had a backup plan.
Luckily I had a backup dream.
You see I also wanted to become
a fairy godmother.
And a unicorn
and a rainbow.
So I became all of those,
and many more.
Well, not really.
But you see this is what art does.
It makes you crazy enough
that it enables you to create and recreate
many beautiful worlds
not many would even dare to imagine.
When I was in Kindergarten
I was only fascinated with
making sense with the words that came
in lines and paragraphs and pages.
I fell in love with stories because
I felt like they were teaching me
and changing me
and it’s always
for the better.
And then I figured I wanted to do the same thing.
I decided to be someone who writes because
I want to be the person who tells a lonely boy
that he isn’t alone.
That it’s all gonna get better soon.
I want to be someone who tells the girl from across the globe
that even if it doesn’t seem so,
she is loved.
I want to reach people
even when they’re far
and convince them the whole of life is going to be tough
but they’re going to get through it.
Even if they start broken
they’re coming out whole.
I want to be part of strangers’ happy endings.
That is why I want to write.
You could say that writing
wouldn’t ever make a good living.
But at least I would make lives.
It’s keeping me alive.
I’m happy I didn’t become a Disney princess.
I’m proud I have been so much more.