When you’re struggling to become your own self, whoever that might be — making choices that are right for you — you’re going to encounter some push back from the people around you. And by “people” I don’t just mean friends and family (though that’s common enough), but also society at large. It really doesn’t matter what path you take, how lofty or “acceptable” it might be. There’s always going to be someone out there saying, “Why would you do that?” Or, “That’s a waste of your time.” Or, “That’s just wrong.”
You want to be an artist? A stay-at-home mom? You want to come out as gay, lesbian, transgender (like, in Russia)? You want to be a Chinese dude writing about rural black Mississippi? Or maybe you want to go away to school and you’re getting pressured to stay home; or you’ve spent eight years becoming a doctor, you suddenly realize your heart is taking you elsewhere, and your family goes, “Aiyeeee.”
It happens. We happen. You happen, your life, your heart.
And maybe you will make the wrong decision. Maybe the advice people give you will turn out to be right, after all. But it’s your choice, your future.
Listen, if I’d been a good girl, I wouldn’t have become a writer. I think that’s true for most artists. That’s why I like the image below so much. Because she feels like a rebel, a woman with a cause, and she’s going places. She’s got her eyes set on a goal, and people better get out of her way, ’cause she’s making it happen.
So make it happen for you, too.