by Lydia@lydiaawolf for the “Lydia’s Literary Lowdown” program in 2014
Question: You describe yourself as a optometrist by day, actress, and of course, you’re an author. Juggling seems to be an inherent trait of yours…but if you had to narrow down your occupation to just one of the three, which would it be and why?
Yes, it seems like I am wearing three hats—an optometrist, actress, and writer at this time—but it’s only happened in the last few years after both my children graduated from college. I was a “neurotic” mother, a wife, and an optometrist when my kids were home. Acting and writing were not on my plate then.
Let me share my thoughts and experiences about all the roles I have played. I love being a mother and a wife; these are my primary roles in life and always will be, even though my kids are no longer living at home.
I started as a full-time optometrist in a corporate setting when my son was two months old. Entering the workforce with young children was challenging in every aspect, yet the necessity of reality left me with little option otherwise at that time.
Fortunately, my work location was very close to home and kids’ schools during their growing up years. Besides the convenience of proximity, I genuinely love my job as an optometrist.
I appreciate all my patients giving me the honor of examining their eyes—the “window to the soul.” I also learned to understand that each soul is precious and unique. Yes, everyone travels along their life journey with an amazing story. If they tell me during the eye exam, I listen to my patients’ accounts; many are genuinely inspiring.
Once I became an empty nester, I decided to pursue some things I have been dreaming about doing for years, and acting is one of them. I have been in several short films and an Indy film as a supporting role. Acting is one of the most humbling experiences I have ever had. I encounter rejections and always feel humiliated. You can say “acting” pushes me to step into an uncomfortable zone and expand my life horizons. It enriched my life experience.
Writing is a fantastic thing to do, and I genuinely enjoy it. It’s all about telling stories. I dream of telling inspiring stories of everyday people with a fun and easy-to-digest writing style.
All three careers are complementary to one another at this time. Acting and writing stimulate imagination and creativity, and my experience as an optometrist enriches and enhances my acting and writing.
Well, it’s quite a long answer. But I do not think I answer your question entirely because I don’t know how to narrow my occupation down to just one. I may be able to answer this question precisely a few years from now.