Lira: I was a celebrity riding a taxi

2013-10-27 14:01

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Pop star Lira had recorded her first album with Arthur and had a hit on the radio, but she found herself at a dead end. In this extract from her book, Making Herstory, she writes about ‘the dip that created the lift’

I felt I’d reached such a dead end with no support and no money. I was doing so much on my own, relying only on my mom and a few friends to make it happen.

I was completely exhausted – physically and emotionally. Most importantly, I did not understand what I was supposed to do now. I did not know where to go.

I was overwhelmed by a huge sense of helplessness.

I was overcome with shame and disappointment. It completely debilitated me and I let it. I just had no more steam and nowhere else to draw inspiration from.

I felt sorry for myself and let myself wither. A few weeks went by and I was spending more and more time at home. I felt the pressure of living at home and not being able to account for my time or contribute to cover my living expenses.

I couldn’t just sit around, so often I would leave the house just to get away from having to answer to my parents.

The tough part about this was that, out there, I had to deal with strangers recognising me from TV and chuckling about the fact that I seemed ‘poor’ for a celebrity, or for the fact that I was a ‘celebrity riding in a taxi’.

There was no place to escape. I really wanted to run away from it all.

I told my parents of my situation and that I needed time to figure things out and determine what my next move would be. I could take on a full-time job again and wake myself up from this fantasy-turned-nightmare, or keep pursuing the dream.

It was already late 2002 and I was horribly behind schedule. Perhaps I should accept defeat and go back to the corporate world with my tail between my legs, I thought.

This would mean that I had failed and was accepting reality.

Indeed, I had failed to get the dream out of my system, and that left me even more broken than when I first started. At this stage, I had moved back home full time and used up all my money. I felt I had absolutely nothing.

The idea that you have a talent that will not get you anywhere confused me greatly. What were we meant to do with our God-given gifts then? What are we meant to do with the incredible urge that comes with wanting to pursue our passion? Are we to merely bury them because this is not how real life works?

But why is it that we work long hours doing work we don’t enjoy for pay that we don’t appreciate, and call that life? Why is walking away from an innate part of who we are referred to as ‘normal’? Why do we have these hunches?

These urges that make us do crazy things like leaving a well-paying regular job in pursuit of a passion? I felt horribly cheated because I had given up everything for this and yet lost everything.

I don’t understand how life works! I looked around me and felt I had no one who could provide me with answers. It made sense to confront God?... After all, He is the giver of the talent; He must surely have a purpose for doing such a thing.

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