Learning to love the craft in High School (or even before), trying to perfect it in college, spending a few years as a fresh adult testing the waters and hoping to find a forever home somewhere. When performance art is something that draws you in deeply, in a way that nothing else does, it’s hard to know when to give it up. Knowing when you aren’t cut out for the stage, knowing the lessons you’ve taken, the sessions with professors, the YouTube tutorials, the months and months of rehearsal time- just wasn’t enough to get you to the place you wanted to be by now.
Life happens, it’s not always our fault, sometimes there’s a pandemic running, and all our plans get twisted. It can put life in perspective and show us what’s important and what we can live without. I was always told, “Where do you want to wake up, what space do you want to be in?” Yet, I never thought about the type of space that wanted me. We can’t always have what we want, we can’t always assume we are a perfect match for our dream jobs, and sometimes we must dig out that back up plan.
If I’m not looking at a stage, whether on or off it, then where am I supposed to go? I have one-hundred backup plans, but what if none of them fit as well as I thought the arts would? A laundry list of questions that will never end, because there’s a chance you’re about to make a terrible mistake. College taught me that I could do anything, and I could do it all at the same time without any sleep, so I should be fine, right? I could write poems and short stories, I could be a wedding singer, I could be a party planner, I could be a History teacher, I could work in a museum, I could be a stay at home mom, I could go back to school until I’m 65, or I could push until I make it to the place I hoped I would.
Sometimes I lose myself on social media, I subconsciously compare myself to others and I forget that my life is just as worthy. I catch myself thinking: “there are billions of people on this Earth, and there are millions of people who have the same dream as I do, someone will always be better.” However, we can’t think like that, every choice we make is unique to us and there is always something to offer the space. It’s so hard to remember how important we are and that our dreams and goals are just as worthy. You could pressure anything in this life, pick up any new talent or put one on the shelf. When we take the time to grow and develop our interests, we become more educated and well-rounded as humans.
Maybe the time isn’t right, but it doesn’t mean it will be that way forever. Pain is only temporary and if you think you aren’t worthy to be in a space, just find a new place to call home. Keep pushing yourself to your limits and think to yourself, am I happy? Do what makes you happy and put those dreams back on the front burner.