Previously on Dumb & Dandy…
After realizing that dumbing down did nothing but bad, I finally retired Operation: Dumb the Fuck Down. Unfortunately, I had way too many years of experience that being dumb had consumed me. For too long, faking being dumb became real. University wasn’t having that behaviour and I was forced to drop out. For a year I never told my proud Mom about dropping out. When I finally was forced to reveal the truth of my shameful secret, I was in an even more awful rut.
I had successfully made my Mom feel as though she was a failure.
Operation: Dumb the Fuck Down PT II
I’ve always wondered how people can get nightmares of demons, creepy kids, and other haunted fucked up shit, yet, still have the courage to sleep another day…And in the dark?!
Now, I don’t usually get nightmares, but hearing my friends’ nightmares makes me very afraid of the dark. I’m actually so afraid of the dark that I’m afraid of nightlights. That little bit of light doesn’t make me feel safe at all!
I usually just dream of fun and random adventures. I also get these miscellaneous dreams that come true in real life; Which, I believe to be my mutant ability to see the future. Obviously, it would evolve into a Professor X kind of ability to read and communicate with people in their minds.
In all seriousness, I really do think there’s a little Professor X in all of us. Our dreams are like Professor X – Giving us subtle hints of what our meaning of life is in this world.
You can dream every night, but only remember a select few. Maybe it was a dream that made you really happy, maybe made you wake up in tears, or maybe made you question yourself. Either way, you remember it for a reason.
There is this one dream I had after disappointing my Mom in Dumb & Dandy: Origins PT I. And it’s been creeping back into my mind as I struggle in this identity crisis.
I’m standing alone in this dark place and I don’t know where I am. Oddly enough, I’m not afraid, as I normally would be in the dark.
Then all of a sudden, this Ed Sheeran look-a-like walks up to me. He’s wearing a headset with a mic and holding a clipboard.
“Ok, Levana. It’s time. You can go out now.”
Suddenly, I’m guided to this light. I don’t know what I’m supposed to do. I’m super nervous – But I’m already walking before my mind can stop me.
Normally, your mind speaks and your body listens. This time in my dream, my body is doing the talking. Of course my mind, being the smart one, is currently annoying AF with all of its questions and fears.
“Where are we going? We shouldn’t be walking towards the light, so why are we walking towards the light? Body, you need to turn back! Shit. We’re dying…”
Then, all of a sudden I’m on a stage. There’s an audience and they’re all applauding for me. I don’t know what is going on, but I know they all came to see me. Now for what?..
Am I being interviewed? Am I performing? What am I performing? Am I accepting an award? – Whoa, an award? Me? Fuck yeah!
…I better be well-dressed for the occasion.
As I get closer to center stage, my mind finally stops asking questions.
“You can’t do this. You don’t know what you’re doing. You’re going to make a fool of yourself.”
Yeah…I liked my mind better when she was asking questions. Who likes listening to doubt?
Not happening in this dream, so, my body ignores and is ready to do whatever we’re going to do. I feel this adrenaline in my body, my heart is beating so fast, and my stomach feels tickly. It’s like that feeling you get when you’re at really high heights; Like when you’re going up a rollercoaster and waiting for the first drop, before jumping off a cliff, standing on a balcony looking down, etc.
I’m now at center stage. I’m just so excited that I’ve completely ignored all that shit my mind has been bitching about. It’s time. I’m finally going to figure out what I’m doing on this stage! My body takes a deep breath.
And I wake the fuck up…
Of course, right?
What was I going to do?!
I wanted to live in that dream so badly that I tried to go back to sleep and dream again. I’ve just never felt so alive! I don’t want to be in this shitty reality and being afraid to deal with a disappointed Mom.
Which, to my surprise, I really had nothing to be afraid of. I guess if anyone understood how I felt, it was my Mom since she dropped out of high school back in her days. A week after revealing the truth, she and I finally had that intervention of the fuckery that was my life. We spoke for hours about what I wanted to do with my future. The only reason it lasted hours was because, realistically…what 20 year old really knows?
I wasted too many years doing what I thought would make my Mom proud that I didn’t know what I really wanted for myself. If I could go back in time, I’d tell the young me to do whatever I wanted to do and just go all in with it. Pretty sure that would make any parent proud – To see their kid successfully happy.
But I let that damn fear get to me! I was afraid to make my own decisions because – what if I suck? What if I disappointed everyone by failing at doing what I love? – Instead of doing what they told me to do? So, I resorted to what my Mom and society said was “successful”. It was supposed to be a win-win for everyone.
It was “smart”. It was safe. It wasn’t me.
I listened to everyone around me except me. Oh, and my Grandma. The woman was adamant on me doing nails…She’s such a stereotype.
I failed because I didn’t do what was right for me. I failed because I did what everyone thought was right for society. I failed because I was opting to settle.
I failed because I had a fear of failing.
Ever heard of the saying “You are what you eat?”
Same thing applies for what you allow to eat you up inside. Your fears become your reality.
So, when I failed I did everything I was trying to avoid and became one big joke to everyone. Everyone except my Mom…and my Grandma, who tried pushing the nail thing again.
So, when my Mom and I were trying to figure out what I wanted to do with life, all I could think about was something my favourite English teacher, Mr. Bernard, told me back in high school.
“Stop thinking about what jobs will make you money. You can never predict where the world will go 5 years from now. A job that will make you 6 figures today may be a dying breed a few years later.”
5 years ago, would you have believed me if I told you there was a job dedicated to managing Instagram?
All I knew and what I know now is that I love writing. I love the challenge of putting the right words together to make your thoughts come to life.
I didn’t tell my Mom what I was going to do. I told her what I wanted to do, which was to study in Broadcast & Film. I had no idea what I would do there exactly, at that time, but my body had a gut feeling. So, I listened to my body.
She agreed that I was right and it did make sense for me to study in that program based on who I was. She even laughed and made jokes about me working in a business environment.
If nightmares don’t scare you enough to keep you up at night, I’ll bet thinking about the rest of your life does; Your career, your spouse, your future child, your new house, etc.. Deciding the rest of your life is a living nightmare. It’s a big fucking deal and it’s fucking scary.
But that’s the problem, being afraid to deal with ‘fucking scary’. Like that dream I had about walking on stage – My mind was filled with questions of fear and comments of doubt.
Everything that I’ve wanted to do with my life; writing, acting (Always been kind of low-key about that), and creating – My mind told me I was scared to pursue.
I was afraid of looking stupid for trying. I was afraid that I would become this loser who wasted so much time towards a path that was too competitive. I was afraid that I would not be successful.
My fear was all in my mind.
Sometimes, it’s okay to ignore your mind when it’s being a negative Nancy. Just let your body do the talking.
Do what you love. Do what you’re fucking good at!
When I was a kid, I always had this feeling in me that I was going to do wonders. I was going to be an actress. I was going to be a writer. I had big dreams. Maybe that’s why I never got nightmares because I’ve always been a dreamer.
As I got older, I let other peoples fears become my own. It held me back.
Is that what it takes to be successful? Just stop letting your questions and fears hold you back? But isn’t that “smart” because it’s less risk?
That’s why I say let’s be dumb.
When you’re “smart”, you think too much. When you think too much, you hold yourself back from taking risks and just going all in with life. Being “smart” is safe. And safe is doubtful.
But being dumb…that’s daring. It’s you seeing a challenge and telling yourself, “Yeah, I can do that because I’m fucking fearless!”
“YASSS BETCH” YOU ARE FUCKING FEARLESS!
Nothing bad can come from doing what you love. If you succeed, then great! If you fail, then “whatevss”, keep failing because it’s what you love. You’ll make it work even when shit gets rough. Which, then, that is your time to be smart. Coming up with solutions when you hit curveballs.
Just stop being such a pussy.
Think about who you are. Think about what you love. Most importantly, think about what you excel at. If you can create something you are capable of doing and love, then it doesn’t matter where the world goes decades from now. Because you will have the ability to go with it.
If you had that dream and you were on stage, what would you do when you wake up?
Fuck those fears and just fucking do it!
Like the time I had to finally face my Mom about dropping out of University. I didn’t want to have my Mom unleash that Dark Phoenix on my ass.
I was scared AF and avoided it at all costs. I did pretty well considering we lived in a condo. But once it was all out and done, I felt silly for being afraid in the first place.
I felt silly because nothing bad came out of facing that fear of discussing my future with my Mom. Only good came out of it. And only more good came afterwards.
3 years later, I graduated College (Thank goodness!) and somehow I got an amazing job working at an amazing manual therapy clinic doing…Marketing!
The world sure has a funny way of putting a spin on things doesn’t it?
Have fun with it. Spin with it. Be dumb with it.