Part 1 of 2: Tomorrow, Not Today.
Wake up. Eat. Go to School. Eat. Study. Eat. TV. Sleep. Rinse and Repeat.
For a number of years, this was the epitome of my daily routine. Occasionally, on those rarest of rare days where I felt especially optimistic, a few minutes’ worth of ambitious ideas for DIY projects would flood my mind - but nothing more. In most cases, though, changes to my typically benign schedule mainly involved the addition of a little physical activity here and there, or another form of entertainment in lieu of the television.
“Tomorrow,” I often told myself, convinced that putting off seemingly challenging tasks for the time being would result in a fierce desire to tackle them the following day. Eventually, this word became all-encompassing, seeping into every aspect of my life - socially, academically, you name it - until it turned into a mantra of mine.
In times of despair, an uttering of “tomorrow” would have provided me reassurance. In times of distress, solace. And in boredom, this word gave me optimism that better things were still yet to come. But growing up, in the face of so many unique adversities, never in my wildest dreams did I dare dream of actually doing.
Or perhaps I did. But even then, it was to wait until…tomorrow.
The very idea of taking matters into my own two hands and addressing them head-on seemed daunting, nearly impossible, even. After all, isn’t there ought to be someone else out there who can fix the world’s problems? What can I, an ordinary tween, contribute, anyway? These very thoughts plagued my worldview, unapologetically acting as justifications for my indifference and passivity when it came to practically any issue you could think of.
“Tomorrow,” I vowed, “not today.”
- A L I C E C H E N G -
I'm a 15 year old Osaka-born Chinese IB student who calls Toronto home. Native to Shenyang, an old industrial city in Northeastern China, I didn't grow up with the most eco-friendly household/circle of friends.