‘I think I was really born to do theater.’ Every time I say that phrase to myself, I feel like a loser. Why? Because up until now, I’m still struggling to do the thing that I really love. A few of my ‘theater peers’ have gone a long way. Some of them doing professional theater productions in different theater companies. I can’t help it but sometimes, or most of the time, I feel a sense of bitterness. ‘I should have been there.’ ‘I should have auditioned for that play.’ ‘I can do that role better.’ These thoughts come crashing as I see them grace the stage, update their Facebook statuses, and upload their rehearsal pics.

‘Oh come on, dude! You can do it! You just have to spend some TIME for it!’

Songs from Closer than Ever (Trumpets Playshop 2008, AFP Theater)

Voila! The magic word! TIME!!! That 4-letter word which seems to be an old cliche whenever people lose hope on the things that they want to do. If you live only 24 hours each day, a third of that time is spent working in the corporate world, a sixth for boring bus and train rides, and another third for sleeping, I only have 4 hours to spare to do the things that I love. The point is, in my case, I really have a difficulty making TIME to do theater and all that jazz. Add the fact that being in a corporate world is so stressful that all you want to do after work is to sleep and never open that freaking work email upon arriving at home. I live 2-hours away from Manila and that’s another ‘stress point.’ I don’t have much freedom to try out or audition for different theater productions because of this distance. There are theater companies that would really require you to work full time and sometimes, on a shifting sked (no night shifts please). So if I really want to do theater, I have to resign from my present job and spend time rehearsing and going to auditions and workshops. Really hard thing to do especially if your job gives you a stable source of income. Oh, did I say that theater doesn’t promise a good and stable source of income? Another dilemma that needs to be addressed. I think there are no other options, it’s ‘either… or.’

Wait, it seems like doing theater is more of a complication than a heart-fulfilling act. I’m beginning to act as if I’m not really sure if that’s what I really want. THAT’S NOT GOOD because it turns out that I’m solving a hardcore Physics problem, not fulfilling a dream. I have lots of if’s and but’s. Before, I used to tell myself that I want to do theater as a ‘sideline’ and work in a multinational company as a full-fledged engineer. I just wanted to do theater as a hobby. But I realized that I’m not really into the hardcore engineering stuff. Things started to change and it became the other way around. I aspired to be a full-fledged theater actor and do engineering as a sideline.

I think of all these things not knowing that I’m wasting a lot of my TIME. Again, that 4-letter word. I would spend more time ranting, sometimes blaming people than getting myself to act. It’s like I’m waiting in vain for the universe to conspire for me to be on stage, to sing and dance to Broadway showtunes. I realized that it doesn’t happen just like that. Yesterday, I read a quote from a devotional book that says, ‘Don’t just sit around waiting for things to happen.’ I realized that I’m not doing much to fulfill this lifelong dream. I think more of my limitations than the things that I can do. I dwell more on the if’s and but’s than exploring avenues to hone my talents as an artist.

I hope and pray that in the coming days, I would be more willing and active to pursue theater. A friend once told me that I have to PRIORITIZE my passions. It made a lot of sense to me, really. I think most people have failed to pursue their dreams because they have given up or they set their dreams aside to do their other ‘responsibilities.’ They decided to stick to the status quo and be confined in a box. I don’t want to be one of them. I want to let my desire grow and see it bear fruit. I want to fuel my passion. I want my heart come fully alive for my God, my Creator. I know I can only hope for what I desire but as long as I keep my eyes and if I can see my dreams being fulfilled, my heart is on the right track. I’m 100% sure that God planted this seed in my heart and He wants me to do my job, to make it grow, cultivate it, and let it bear fruit. I should rather MAKE TIME rather than find time for it.