So, today i tackled another thing on my to do list : my taxes. yup, that's right, i work for an accounting firm & i've been procrastinating doing my own taxes since february. what a turd. anyway, i finally buckled down & got all my info together, and in trying to figure out what big expenses i can write off as acting expenses, i got out my 2008 calendar.
oh my, how interesting that was. early 2008 feels like five years ago; i have changed so much.
in 2008, i felt like a mess. i felt like everything was out of my control and that i was spinning my wheels, going crazy reaching for something that was just barely beyond my fingertips. i looked to other people to make me feel better about myself. i was doing the best acting of my life, but i was frustrated to the point of bitterness with the state of my acting career; i wanted to believe every company and workshop that said they had the key to my success, and then was angry at myself for my empty wallet when they, of course, did not. i was stuck.
in october 2008 - one year ago - i had a gut-wrenching, sob-til-you're-gasping-for-air, paralyzing breakdown. and, though it didn't feel like it (but i knew, deep down, even then) it was really a breakthrough.
i decided to allow myself to not be an actor. i decided to give myself a break. i realized most things are out of my control & it's much better to let things be. i decided to get off the packed-gym-treadmill of this career and go sit quietly by myself in the grass. i decided to allow myself to be single, directionless, and lazy for the first time in my adult life. and subsequently, i re-calibrated my views of "failure" and "success."
i've been growing like weeds ever since.
in letting go of my idea of what a "professional actor" is, i've become so much more fulfilled as an artist, not just an actor-for-hire. creative opportunities have found me, without me looking for them. in being single, i've discovered what i actually want in a relationship and that i'm ok with waiting for it. in being lazy, i've discovered how productive i can be when i'm enjoying what i'm doing. i've opened up time to explore things i'm interested in, and i've been able to save a lot of money.
if i hadn't had this "breakdown" i would not be going to australia.
sometimes you have to do something that hurts like hell in order to get to the good stuff. i still have to remind myself to let go & trust, that things will always work out. i still get stressed about things that are out of my control. but i've found, with about a 99.9% success rate, that when i do let go, things work out pretty damn splendidly all on their own.
my life is not the "ideal" life. it's not the life little girls are raised to want when they grow up. i have no prince charming, no house, no white picket fence, no you-can-do-anything career. i'm 28 years old, single, unsure of my life's direction, renting a little apartment & driving my grandma's inherited car.
i'm my own person. i'm free. i'm self-sufficient and i have the most amazing friends & family to lean on when i need a shoulder. i work three days a week in an office and once or twice a week at jobs i enjoy, bartending or babysitting - always meeting new people - and i'm able to not only live in one of the most expensive cities in the world, i'm able to enjoy that city. and i'm able to travel - for two months! - to another continent. i may not be where i thought i'd be by now, but i'm exactly where i need to be. and i'm open to the future. wherever the wind may take me.
all images via we heart it
take a look around; i bet you're exactly where you need to be too. funny how that happens... :)