As a person who tends to feel somewhat inadequate whilst not accomplishing anything, my first month in NYC was really difficult. Apart from being cast in a showcase, I found myself with so much free time that I was beginning worry. I was in New York to work my ass off and I was ready to work my ass off, but despite several callbacks, no work was coming my way.
On my way back from Washington after I saw my extended family, I had recieved notification that I did not, in fact, get a part I really thought I was perfect for. I memorized the audition script, was one of the top three in the call backs, and still it didn't go anywhere. I found myself praying (something I rarely do) for some form of help from whomever or whatever burdened me with artistic abilities that I could not ignore or drop to do something sensible people do with their lives.
My training taught me that I was going to face a lot of rejection in my life, and even though I knew not to take it so personally, I couldn't help but cry behind my sunglasses as I waited to board the bus back to NYC. Embarrassed to tell my mom (whom I have a hard time disappointing), I sent a message to my good friend Ana, whom I met in my New York Film Academy acting class. Even though we don't see each other often, Ana and I still support each other whenever one of us is so emotional that our judgement is clouded. She gave me some serious tough love and basically told me that I was an idiot for being so upset. And she was right. She said "you'll get the next one", and I immediately stopped crying. For some reason, I believed her.
Walking down the centre aisle of the bus, I was looking for someone relatively normal to sit beside. Someone who didn't smell or make too much conversation so I could sit and ponder my self-pity in silence. I took a seat next to a friendly-looking girl, whom I immediately felt at ease talking to. Cassidy. She was an actress, and a new resident of New York like me. I forgot my misery and giggled (quietly) about nothing with her for 5 hours straight. We were apparently so boisterous that a guy sitting 2 rows in front of us kept telling us to shut up (though I am sure we were not that disruptive, he was just a weirdo who peed all over the bus toilet seat and left it there for me to hover over). The bus trip flew by, and left me feeling somewhat open-minded and relieved about what was to come. I met someone who was in a similar position, and it made me feel far less alone in my quest for artistic fulfillment.
The next day, I went to an audition for a new play about Sigmund Freud in Greenwich Village. I arrived early, hoping that they would make time to see me before my designated audition time, and I had heard that the earlier your audition, the more likely they were to remember you. I was ready. I was going to use all that built-up, negative emotion and turn it into something great. The audition was a cold read, and despite being terrible at cold reads, I breezed through it and felt an inexplainable creative high that left me strutting all the way home. Strutting so hard, in fact, that my hip hurt for a day afterward. "This was what I am meant to do", I thought to myself; turn negativity into creativity. I received an email that day from the director who cast me as Helena, the lead in the play, all the while having Ana's words echo in my mind: "you'll get the next one".
Perhaps this post is just to remind myself that life goes in cycles; sometimes everything goes right, and other times it doesn't. But even during those times when you don't get everything you want, you can at least be certain that those times won't last forever, and the universe will find some way to make you strut again.