On an ordinary school day, I received a call from the company.
“Youngbae-ah. Due to some scheduling conflicts we might need you to stand in and perform. Come immediately to XX subway station.”
As trainees, there were occasionally times wherein we had to take the place of sunbaes who suddenly had scheduling conflicts. After I hung up the phone I ran as fast as I could towards the agreed meeting place. I was supposed to be attending classes in preparation for the final exams, and some were scheduled for the next day.
However, to be able to stand on stage wasn’t an opportunity that was given every day. So I decided to just drop everything and head towards the meeting place.
When I arrived at the station and called back to the staff member, no one was answering the phone. It was probably time for the event to start. I had no choice but to just stand on the street and wait for him to contact me again. After 3 to 4 hours, manager hyung finally gave me a call.
“Hyung, I’m still waiting here at XX subway station.”
Hyung was surprised to hear that.
“What? You’re still waiting there?”
And then came the disappointing words from Hyung.
“The concert is over. We thought you weren’t coming so we just skipped that portion of the show. It ended for a while now actually. Go back to the training room.”
It was beginning to look like whichever company a person trained in, we trainees would always be baggage that won’t be picked up even when we were dropped on the ground. We have no idea what we’d be good at, and it was possible that the hard work we put in would be all for naught. But we were still rocks that couldn’t be carved yet. If we had time to go around begging “please acknowledge me!” to people, then that time would be better spent practicing voice and dance.
So with that, I conditioned myself to be patient and started to seriously think about the positive side of things. Luckily, the exams for the next day were subjects that only needed memorization. Rather than spending the 3 to 4 hours just waiting for a call, I was able to study while I waited. Although the place was full of people coming and going, I was very focused in memorizing so what I learned stayed with me. And then I started thinking more…
“It’s a good thing that I was able to get in some studying while I was waiting, since because of that I would have more time to train. Although I was disappointed and felt hungry and cold, this should still be okay, right?”
The period before we debuted was when I really taught myself to be stronger. It was the time wherein before I could become an iron lock, I had to be heated, forged, and then submerged in cold water, before I could be heated again.
Even if I reach the point wherein I break my legs, or meet any other challenges along the way, I cannot give up. Maintaining a sense of optimism and self-security amidst an environment wherein praises and encouragement from others were rare, in order to still be able to showcase one’s strengths, is a trainee’s most important mission.
Translator’s Note: This is Part 7 of Taeyang’s Shouting Out to the World, a translation from the Chinese translation of Shouting Out to the World by Big Bang China. This is merely a fan translation and is not affiliated with YG Entertainment or the publisher Sam and Parkers. This should only be for the fans’ personal use and should not be reproduced, modified, redistributed for any commercial purposes. Please do not take out/repost elsewhere without the translator’s explicit permission.
Credits: Chinese Translation by 贼@BBCN.
English translation by : amandajaclyn18.tumblr.com /@amandajaclyn18 at twitter. With permission to be reposted by Alwaystaeyang.
Ok, this is definite. I could never be a trainee. Reading about how hard being a trainee is makes me feel so much for all the idols out there, they had to endure a lot to even debut.