I have never believed in destiny, or fate as some would call it. It scares me to think that I am not in control of my own life. The idea that everything that has happened to me, and will happen to me in the future has been preordained makes me feel like a pig headed to slaughter; an actress in the most tragic drama ever written.

If there were such a thing as fate then it is quite conceivable that I was put here only to open the door for the woman who was behind me at the store today, or to smile and say a few words to the sad man who was standing on the curb when I walked out. If such were the case, then my part is done and I am left to wander until the act is over. An extra in my own life.

But every action has a consequence. Even the smallest choice can lead to an enormous change in the course of events. I will never know how my decision to smile may have affected the outcome of that sad man's story. It may have been pointless. And it may have made all the difference.

I am not one to give in to the inevitable. I fight the unavoidable with everything in me if I do not like where it may lead. I had, for a very long time, lived my life at the whim of those around me. I have followed the script written for me for far to long. I know better now.

This tragedy called Life has been damaged and made ugly by Time. Pages have been lost, and the magic has been destroyed. It is up to those of us with the power to take up the task to fill in the blanks. To follow the script written for us by society or whoever was chosen to direct this play is to give up every chance of seeing the truth; of seeing life as an opportunity for the extraordinary to occur, if only we know how to fill in the missing pages.

So let the play begin. I have rewritten the story, and made my own conclusion. Though there are never any true endings, all plays must eventually wrap up somewhere. The actors will inevitably grow weary, the lights will dim, and the curtain will fall. There will be no happy ending, no reprise, for this play called Life can have but one ending. When the courage and the will and the passion to carry on are burnt out, the act will end, and no one in this world will ever have the strength to raise the curtain.

I suppose that now I have talked myself into a corner. In the end we all have the same destiny. It is how we reach it that makes all the difference. Life is the lost act. The one which only the best improv can survive. There is no practice, and the dress rehearsal was cancelled somewhere along the line. We have only this one opportunity to prove ourselves to the critics. There are no second chances. Encores, I have learned, exist only in fairy tales.