Dear 2009 Viveca,
You accomplish your dreams and more.
Being a legit soprano is awesome. That’s actually what won them over when you auditioned for Broadway. They’ll gush over that high C you were always embarrassed about. The industry does demand a lot of belting – as you expected, but that’s okay. Though you’re still not a high belter, you can belt. You also have other strengths.
It’s not rainbows all the way. You’ll audition for the same production 9 times and not get it. You’ll never know why. That won’t discourage you though. Instead of letting it defeat you, you take even more classes to improve. That’s what I have always loved about you. You are always seeking self-growth and improvement from your failures.
With that being said, you stay really ambitious. You never stop setting goals and making them happen. You will have hunches about things. Trust those hunches, but also trust that they will unfold in their own time. You are still very impatient to this day. So, be patient.
You will learn that your life and career don’t only revolve around musical theatre. In fact, musical theatre will drive you crazy for a little while. It doesn’t mean you don’t love it, it just means that you have look for inspiration elsewhere when you are burnt out. You are multi-faceted in your talents. You are good at so many things. You can do a lot of things. Keep exploring everything you take an interest in. You never lose your curiosity for yourself, your career and the world around you.
You will go through a terrible and long phase of depression and anxiety. You get help and the depression gets better. The anxiety lingers, but now you know what you need when the anxiety attacks take place.
You are not ugly. Your hair changes your entire essence, to be honest. You should have never gotten layers or a side fringe. Your hair actually becomes your favourite physical attribute.
Let me repeat it again because I know you will need it – you are not ugly. In fact, people you meet will get mad at you for hating your beauty mark. Stop trying to scratch it off when you go to bed at night. However, you still feel uncomfortable when someone compliments your mole, because you have been conditioned your whole life that it is ugly. You consider getting it removed all the time. You are always unsure; you go back and forth, but whatever you choose when you finally decide, you are still you.
You are still the bestest of friends with Ema and NK. That does not change. You see them maybe once a year, but when you do, nothing ever changes. The chatter never stops. They are truly irreplaceable.
You meet new friends along the way too. Friends who become family. The word ‘friend’ takes on a new meaning for you. It means more to you now than it ever did before. You will be surprised to know that you actually become more of an introvert. That makes some of your friendships suffer sometimes, because you are really bad at reaching out and keeping in touch. You feel really comfortable being alone. You love staying at home. You like to do your own thing. You get anxiety when there are social gatherings, but you also feel the biggest FOMO when you don’t/can’t go. It is complicated.
Despite that, you are a good friend, because you care about them, a lot. Almost a little too much at times. You just have to be better about reaching out and showing it. Did I mention that you are loyal, goofy and honest? You also give great advice. That is what your friends love about you.
You learn that you don’t like it when people take advantage of you. You shut down when that happens. But then Matthew is always there to give you a hug. You live together now, in a one bedroom apartment, with your dog. The Matthew who you conquer 5.5 of long distance with. The same Matthew who you met on the bus when you were 12. He is still shy and awkward, maybe even more so than before, but he remains the most wholesome person you have met to this day. You are excited to see where his career takes him. Just like you, he is pursuing his passion too. He treats you real good but challenges you at the same time. Apart from not doing your dishes periodically and being less fussy about hygiene than he is, you treat him real good too. You balance each other.
You miss your parents and Choco a lot. You see them maybe once to twice a year, but they are always there for you. Choco is 14 and a half now. Although she is in pain and has a big lump on her belly, she is very healthy nonetheless. She is in good hands.
Your mum will always pick up the phone even when it is 3am. You will never forget their reaction when they got the phone call from you telling them that you booked your first Broadway show, or your dad’s teary-eyes after he watches you perform on a Broadway stage. They always support you, even when they’re mad at you. Though you sometimes argue with your mum and get annoyed with how your dad doesn’t pay attention – their love for you can burn down the earth. To this day, you are very close to them and tell them everything. Keep them close in your heart.
Most importantly, you become a kind person. Kind to yourself; kind to others. You learn to love yourself, and pass that empowerment on to others.
Stay grounded. You have a lot to look forward to.