But that’s not always a good thing.
Well, not always a comfortable thing might be a more accurate way to put it. Sometimes, it feels like it leaves a larger margin for disappointment.
I have always known what I want in life, and I’ve always been working toward it: to finish high school, to go to college, and to be a theatre and authorial professional.
That’s the plan.
I’ve been oriented toward making that happen since … ever.
I have no doubts about my dreams. I know I love theatre and writing, and I plan to do it always, and I am so excited to study them at a higher level. I’m planning my class schedule to maximize my theatrical education (and nerding out at some of the options), I’m planning out when and how I’ll start applying for internships, I’m applying for scholarships like an absolute madwoman. (I won the 4-year theatre scholarship, by the way, in exciting news).
On the “I know what I want and I’m working for it” front, there is no pause. No doubt. I just keep working, and I’m happy with that.
However, as I keep working for what I want, anxieties keep finding me. Not doubts – I have never doubted what I want. Just anxieties.
Like: once I start studying theatre, what if I discover I don’t actually love it?
What if I can never find an internship?
What if I discover I’m no good at writing when I present a finished work to the world?
What if I never have any good, marketable ideas?
What if I stop writing?
And I know these fears are all probably irrational. I’ve been doing these things for years – not at a collegiate level, but, especially where theatre is concerned, at a very serious one. If I secretly hated it, I would know by now, and the fact is, I love it. That’s unlikely to change.
ALL of those ideas are unlikely – I will find at least some internship. Maybe it will be unpaid, but there are a lot of different options, and I know that.
I know people will publish my work. I’ve done it before. I have already presented finished works to the world, and I’ve been lucky to get a good response.
I have a lot of ideas. Even if I go through some idea-dry-periods, I have enough saved up from now to last me for a while.
The idea that I’ll stop writing is laughable. I know on here I joke a lot about my distinct lack of forward progress on my projects and my long hiatuses from keeping this project updated, but the fact of the matter is, I’m always writing something and I always do come back to my projects.
Even then, should any or all of these events come to pass, I’m trying to remind myself that I am adaptable. I can change my plans. I can rewrite my dreams. And I can pursue those new ones.
I am almost as certain as I can be that my aspirations won’t change – the fears are just anxiety over the huge change that going to college will bring eating away at me – but the thing is, even if they do, that doesn’t mean it’s the end.
If there’s one thing I’m good at, it’s problem solving and pushing through until I achieve my goals.
So if my goals change? I’ll be okay.
And if they stay the same, I’ll still be okay. There are many ways to reach your dreams, and I will find the right one.
I’m writing this all out mostly for myself, I think, but if you’re having similar faltering thoughts, just know it will be okay for you, too.
There’s the famous saying that all roads lead to Rome. Not all roads lead to success and a happy life, but here’s the deal: there are a super duper lot of roads, dude. And there’s not only one that will take you where you need to go – there are many. You can find one. So can I.
We’ll find our road, dang it, and we’re going to make it to Rome.
Meet me at the Colosseum.