The 54th Deadline: To Continue Dreaming

The 54th Deadline: Life’s always going to give you another chance if you’re constantly persistent.
It’s a wonderful thing to dream. Like everyone else as a child, dreams kept me going. Dreams kept me motivated to stay in school, get good grades and all that stuff we’re all supposed to strive for because it’s the appropriate course of action. With any luck, all of the effort would be rewarded at some point.

Eventually, our dreams should materialize into something worthwhile, or so we are told.

When you’re a clueless/naive kid, you don’t know what the heck you want to be. I thought I could be a firefighter for example. There was a point where I thought I could easily become a video game developer.

Of course, as I got older and eventually found myself in college and choosing a major, I opted for journalism. I wanted to be a journalist. A journalist. And nothing more.

But without having to repeat myself entirely this time, I will sum up the gist of what happened roughly five years ago – I screwed up. Badly, I have to add. And so badly that it has been a long, arduous process to reverse and actually attempt to heal some of the mental and emotional damage I had to endure.

So just like that, my dream faded for the time being. It would be years before I thought I could have some semblance of a normal person. It would be literally a year and a half after graduating college before I even found a “job” to escape that cruddy unemployment tag.

What a glorious dream, right? I had the hopes and aspirations to become a young, potentially talented reporter/editor in the making! Well, at the very least, this was the plan.

Nothing quite panned out that way at all. I have to say.

But I digress.
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Everyday NhanSense – Day 80

Everyday NhanSense: Each day, I will blog about something that comes to mind. My goal is to practice writing about my hobbies, my interests, my opinions and so forth.

Day 80’s Topic: Childhood innocence.
When you’re a kid, you are allowed to say the darndest things. You’re allowed to think freely. You’re allowed to be, well, a kid.

You don’t have to worry about money, where you live, what grownup responsibility you have to have taken care of next and this is all because of childhood innocence. In a way, I miss being a kid. I probably wasn’t the happiest kid in the world, but I was at the very least curious enough to see how things would pan out.

I had a skewed view of the world. Who could blame me? I didn’t think much beyond going to school, doing homework, recess, playing games with my brothers and all that jazz. Life was simple. Life was good.

At the same time, life had to go on. I couldn’t be a kid forever. I am an adult. Mind you, I am probably an adult who needed to grow up a long time ago, but I digress.

Things happened. Some were horrible. Some were great learning experiences. Regardless, all of this stuff led me to face my own maturity, or lack of, by forcing my hand. I couldn’t continue to think like I was a kid who needed to depend on others so much for basic needs.




Heck, I didn’t do my own laundry for a really long time as a college graduate. A bit embarrassing, but it’s true.

At a certain point, I had to tell myself this all needed to stop. It was time to let go of the childhood innocence, at least until some grownup aspects came into play, and really seek out the independence I should have achieved at this given point in time. Continue reading

Everyday NhanSense – Day 47

Everyday NhanSense: Each day, I will blog about something that comes to mind. My goal is to practice writing about my hobbies, my interests, my opinions and so forth.

Day 47’s Topic: Childhood dreams.
When you’re a kid, you don’t really know what you want when you’re older, do you?

I know I sure as heck didn’t know. I thought I did.

I was going to make video games and work for Nintendo. I wrote a letter to the company’s American branch as a class assignment in sixth grade. I was so sure that was the path I was going to take in life. Guess what? I ended up not going down that path. I am not going to say things didn’t pan out, but it was more that you come across different forks in the road and you have to make a choice.

You have no clue what each destination will ultimately take you, but I guess this is the challenge about living out your life.

Things certainly are easier when you are a kid in this regard. Ignorance is bliss, after all. You think the whole world is your oyster, and we are fed with the notion that we can be anything if we all try to be.

The reality is, however, we cannot all have certain dreams come true for whatever reason.

For instance, due to my height being something less than six feet tall and lack of coordination or ball skills, there was no way I would end up playing in the NBA as a basketball star. Not gonna happen.


No way, Jose.

It would be impossible.

But you know what? I don’t have to be an NBA star. It’s not what I want to do, anyway.
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Everyday NhanSense – Day 41

Everyday NhanSense: Each day, I will blog about something that comes to mind. My goal is to practice writing about my hobbies, my interests, my opinions and so forth.

Day 41’s Topic: What could have been.
I do wonder often about “what could have been” had life went the way I envisioned it would five years ago.

So what did I have in mind?

Well, the plan was simple. I was going to take the summer off. No summer job or anything. I just wanted to relax. I felt burnt out from school, my senior year at college was just constant stress from working and I felt entitled to an easy summer at home with my family.

Let’s just say I had a lot of time to play video games and watch shows on Netflix. Nothing too exciting. I was a college grad with a diploma in hand. Due to my naive nature, I thought the real world could wait.

After summer, I just wanted to fire off some resumes and start the real job search. Assuming things would fall properly into place, I just felt like in my mind I was a shoo-in for any position I would apply for, which I believe would mean the search could end in a few short months. Tops.

I applied to various positions throughout the state of Washington, focusing on all kinds of newspapers and a few other types of publications such as magazines. I tunnel visioned extremely hard on “journalism only” gigs.

And why wouldn’t I?

I was the third highest position at my college newspaper as a copy chief. The only positions higher were editor-in-chief followed by managing editor. I had experience with other editor positions, was a reporter and participated in all kinds of other types of journalism-type projects for my paper, which included page design.

By all means, I ate, breathed and slept with journalism on the mind. The only thing I wanted was just to be able to call myself a professional journalist. It didn’t matter about the money or anything like that.

At one point, I wholeheartedly trusted everything journalism as a field had to offer for the world, and I saw it as a necessary occupation. I thought I could do my part and be involved with something that has written page-after-page of the world’s history.

I wanted to be a journalist so badly that it hurt. I wanted to be a reporter, an editor … just something that had to do with the journalism industry.

And then reality came to slap me right across the face.
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Everyday NhanSense – Day 27 - 155052 sample
Everyday NhanSense: Each day, I will blog about something that comes to mind. My goal is to practice writing about my hobbies, my interests, my opinions and so forth.

Day 27’s Topic: Getting rid of insomnia.
Getting a good night’s sleep in a long time has been quite the treat. Catching Z’s after a day full of personal triumphs and channeling all the stress from the past two months into something productive has been empowering. It just feels nice being able to slip into bed, tucked under some warm sheets while feeling the “good” kind of tired, if you know what I mean.

I realize a lot of my prior blog posts have at times come off as panicky, and rightfully so I had all the reasons in the world to freak out.

But storms come and go, and I can finally at least say my sails are facing toward an ideal direction for once. I hope that my body can return back to a relatively, and more importantly, consistent sleeping schedule that I don’t have to feel embarrassed about (no more staying up until 3 a.m. or later because of insomnia.)

The insomnia was damaging to my well-being. My inability to sleep properly derived from all kinds of stress and personal pressure I put on myself (heck, I have even spotted some random white hairs in the mirror for a few weeks now.) I woke up exhausted, feeling upset at myself and everything going on in my life, but above all else I just felt like I had nothing to look forward to each day.
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Everyday NhanSense – Day 10

Everyday NhanSense: Each day, I will blog about something that comes to mind. My goal is to practice writing about my hobbies, my interests, my opinions and so forth.

Day 10’s Topic: Identity.
“Nhan, who the heck are you?”

I guess it’s a good question you could probably ask me these days. And I wish I could give you a good, respectable answer. Truth be told, there are days where I don’t even know how to identify myself.

A lot has happened over the years. Some good things. Some bad things. And there are also some questionable things thrown into the mix as well. All of which has contributed in some shape or form toward creating my “identity” as a person to this day. However, let’s say our identities are like blank canvases, just waiting to be painted on with whatever comes to mind.

If you could take everything in your life and then splash it all over this canvas, what can people identity you as?

For some people, it’s pretty obvious.

Michael Jordan the basketball player.

Peyton Manning the quarterback.

Taylor Swift the singer.

There are millions of examples, but the point is these individuals all have their easily noted identities.

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Everyday NhanSense – Day 9

Everyday NhanSense: Each day, I will blog about something that comes to mind. My goal is to practice writing about my hobbies, my interests, my opinions and so forth.

Day 9’s Topic: Chasing after hares.
The Japanese culture has a particular proverb that resonates with me.

(Ni usagi wo ou mono wa ichi usagi wo mo ezu.)
Literally: One who chases after two hares won’t catch even one.
Meaning: Trying to do two things at once will make you fail in both.

As human begins, we often feel stretched in multiple directions as far as interests go. It could be delving into photography one day or learning how to do a particular dance style the next. I am certainly guilty of this as well when it comes to pursuing these “hares” in life.

I want to do this. I want to do that. I want to do this while doing that. There are so many things I want to learn, but realistically I am aware I am not giving each respective activity enough attention. It requires time and energy to become proficient at something. Piano, singing, painting … everything for that matter.

Practice makes perfect, as they say. Continue reading