Two nights ago I attended a Kiva social event at the SF Hub, and rubbed shoulders with socially enlightened San Franciscans and beyond, which brought my own conflicted feelings about ideals vs. ambitions into the limelight. Generally, I try to avoid that, as it tends to make me consume industrial amounts of sugar in an an attempt to turn inner conflict into inner confit.
|A small business owner in Huancanayo, Peru.|
Kiva helped her get money to expand her store.
|This is the concept behind "The Hub."|
The Kiva social was eye-opening. I only wish I was wearing shades. Among the people I met there: former Kiva fellows who quit their cushy, well-paying finance jobs to volunteer in muddy boots in mosquito-ridden countries of the world on their own dime, folks who created non-profits to support sustainable and green fashion, and, thanks to my friend Michelle, Premal Shah, Kiva President.
But rather than continue to praise these amazing people and their lofty goals, let me tell you about my own inner gridlock. I really, truly admire the idealists who have the strength to follow their dreams at the expense of their career. I also really, truly admire the professionals who can dedicate themselves fully and unquestioningly to their career paths. My impasse stems from the fact that I am trapped between my ideals and my ambitions. While the former threaten to flatten my peace of mind under the footprint of unrealized potential and nagging doubt, the latter are basically etched in my personality by the chisel of parental aspirations.
I’m not sure if this is directly related to the fact that I’m a first generation immigrant and I carry in my luggage duty, guilt and ambition neatly folded, with a flavor of the hinterlands, or if it’s a wider characteristic of my generation. At any rate, I have to admit, living in San Francisco has made me exponentially more aware of this gray space I inhabit on the edges of emotional and professional fulfillment.
That said, the hors d'oeuvres were fantastic.