I realize that probably no one even reads this stuff we (read: I) write here, but my instincts are telling me to write, so I listen and do as I’m told. I wrote something last night, put my kids to bed, then came back to it this morning and was like WTF was that? and started fresh. Ergo, rewritten.
Amy and I went to Hong Kong for ten days a couple of weeks ago. We live in a time where it feels like we teeter between sharing everything about anything and curling up in a ball to protect ourselves. Right? It’s hard to even know whats the truth anymore, but I digress – we haven’t shared much about Hong Kong yet. And we’ve gotten a lot of “what the hell are/were you doing in HK?!” messages that actually have both the ? and the ! at the end. We tell them we went to solve some problems, and then they either ask more questions or they’re like “Did you try any of the pork buns?” and then we’re like “No and we’re so bummed about it!” and onward we all go feeling satisfied.
One of my favorite lines from any movie ever is from The Social Network (about Facebook) where the Napster guy played by Justin Timberlake tells Mark Zuckerberg’s character, “You don’t even know what The Thing is yet, man.” I think about this so often, in fact, that I’ve come to realize that most people have a The Thing in their life. Something slightly unrealized. Still brewing. Needs a little more time in the oven. When it’s ready you’ll slingshot forward and go further than you ever have before. If you’ll let yourself, that is. Because The Thing needs courage, too. It needs you to get out of your own way.
Having a sister as a business partner means that sometimes we’re talking about work and sometimes we’re like, “You need to take a shower and get out of your house for a while.” It means we can talk pretty openly about how we’ve been holding our breath with our lockets because, ya know, what the hell are we doing? There’s no one to lead the way. That’s us. We’re the leaders. And when no one can guide you you’re left with two choices: Guide yourself and go to Hong Kong to find answers to the questions that no one else is asking, or stop.
One of the greatest things our parents instilled in us is that we’re not that important. We’re just not. And let’s face it, neither are you. None of us are. No one is going to sweep in and save you from yourself. There is no trust fund holding up these two sisters, and we’re guessing there’s none under you, either. And to some people this may seem brash or unromantic, but I’d argue that’s its profoundly beautiful to approach your life with the charisma of knowing that you and you alone are responsible for how you spend your days, your years on this Earth. You can stand in your way, scrolling through other people’s ideas on social media and Pinterest (hello! right here!), or you can step aside and let yourself move forward.
We’re moving forward. And we can’t really tell you everything about Hong Kong yet because we don’t completely understand what The Thing is yet. But one thing you should know is that historically once we decide to get out of our own way it’s not an option to turn back around, so we tend to move quickly. Joyously. Sometimes exhaustedly. But always with the idea that we’re part of something bigger than ourselves, because as our parents made sure we know, it’s not about us. It’s about all of us. You, them, her, him, ours, theirs, the entirety of it. All of it.
P.S. Don’t miss out on the last of The Evelyn Locket. It’s 40% off and once it’s gone, it’s gone…