"I'll audition for some shows eventually"
"Yeah? Do you want to though?" - A Professor.
Oh Shit. Do I? Do I?
I've always liked straight plays, but I don't think I have ever actually 100% had the desire to pursue acting in them as a career.
That was nice to say.
I have convinced myself that it's something I need to do. In the back of my mind, not doing it, made me feel like I was letting people down--that this was some sort of path I needed to follow--that I failed otherwise--that I somehow had given up. Maybe that thought comes from studying theater, or having all of my friends into it, I'm not sure--but I'm glad I am starting to figure this out now.
I know how I feel about comedy, and it is not what I feel for straight plays.
I love theater, I respect theater, I have had fun performing, but ultimately it is not what I really love or want to do..
I love comedy. I love sketch. I love improvisation.
All three of them terrify the shit about of me, and can be crippling, but ultimately it is what I came here for. I have had a desire to move to Chicago for three years. I took my first improv class in college and was pretty terrified. I couldn't stay still on stage. I didn't listen. I had no idea what was going on. I sat in the back of the class trying to go unnoticed. But I kept showing up as difficult as it was.
I had a friend say to me "Maybe you just like watching it, and aren't meant to do it"
Then I said. Fuck that, and reflected on my life. I was super outgoing and social all throughout middle school and high school. I grew up watching Conan, and comedy central, and loved performing and being goofy with my friends and family. Then I got to college and was not myself for a year or two. I was a sad, crippled, mousy version of myself constantly being manipulated--looking for validation from other people because I never got it at home.
I think, for a very long long time I have had blinders on. It's been very difficult to accept or believe nice things people have told me about myself, or my work. It's difficult to recognize my progress whether that be with my comedy show, or health and fitness--I know I have improved but I have such an emotional block that I can't feel it, or step away from it and say "holy shit look how far I've come." I have trouble accepting compliments from people because I don't see these things in myself.
It's such a difficult way to live. Beating yourself up, hating yourself, not feeling worthy. It's awful, and it sucks, and I know it's irrational, but it's where I'm at right now, and it isn't easy to shake off.
I am thankful though, and I'm glad I am beginning to realize that this is what I really want to do. I do want to be on a stage, just one where everything is made up. And...there is nothing wrong with that.
I moved here a month after graduation, and am taking three classes, tons of workshops, interning at a theater, am on a team, and I'm performing. I'm constantly listening to podcasts, inspiring stories of people I look up to, and reading--a lot--probably more than I ever did in college. I'm studying my craft.
This is what I want to do, and I'm doing it.
I need to let go, and realize that I am doing the right thing. More than anything I need to work on my attitude about myself in order to fly. I know this, and now just need to start implementing positivity into my life and realize that my thoughts and opinions are valid and matter.
I constantly talk about how conflicted I am, but I really think, deep down, I've felt that my opinions don't matter, or won't be accepted. Probably a huge side effect of being manipulated for so long.
Kathy Sarra--an amazing professor I had in college told me that deep down we all know what we need to do, we just need to listen to our bodies and act on our impulses without judgement.
I'm going to start standing up for myself--saying when something is wrong--and not feeling bad for how I feel. Most importantly, I'm getting help, and excited to shake this shit off.
A wonderful improv teacher I had last year said that we should play the scenes we want to play not the ones we feel like we need to play, now it's time to live the life I want to live and not the life I think I need to live.