Welcome to RoR, Nikita Ushakov. I’m 68 and these are my impressions.
What are one’s likes in production and relationships and leisure are to some extent given in one’s present constitution, depending on one’s past and somewhat open to further development by future choices and new exposures to what is possible. One’s intelligence in the various facets of intelligence, one’s level of aversion or embrace of risk, one’s balance of need for solitude and need for company are also given in one’s constitution and might be open to further development by nature or by conscious cultivation.
That some features of one’s constitution were and are limited in their amenability to change by choice, for definite reasons of improved life and happiness, does not diminish their preciousness in one’s constitution. That one has two legs and can run is a perfectly square value and joy even though mostly that’s a part of one’s constitution that was given without one’s much choosing it. That Mallory is hooked on sculpturing rather than on painting or interior designing or engineering or banking would not be by only his choices, but things in him he found at say age 13.
I’d like also to mention that although we choose to continue to live and continue to embrace all the organic and psychological organization that entails, the value of those things does not come from our choosing that continuation. Value is already in attendance, although we can become alienated from it, and we do not continue to be in it and be it automatically.
Nikita, I’d not contrast the objective with the coincidental. That I have a seizure or that deer are in the yard when I glance out the window would be objective accidental coincidence.
On choosing a career, it has seemed to me that one has to venture on one, maybe then another, to find out where is a good fit of ability, love of particular kind of work, and market demands. And it’s good to be able to embrace change in one’s line of work. The path selected at a given point needs some considerable stick-to-it to make a real test of it.
There are some ways in which I’m like Rand’s protagonists, such as in always being engaged in creative projects. However, ways in which I or others have differed from them have not necessarily made us morally or psychologically inferior to those protagonists.
The fictional characters and their courses of life are composed out of plans drafted by the author. To considerable extent, we real people have our persons and lives contoured by our plans and efforts bent to those plans. But the poetic justice of the fiction writer is not being meted out here in real life. Here are only causal relations and accidental coincidence without a world-bending overseer.