Last week, I had an audition for the Stratford Festival. You may recall that this is my dream. Being an actor at this festival is the absolute, ultimate, biggest dream I have.
It was something to even be granted an audition, as this in of itself is a competitive area of decision. I was proud and so excited to even be given the chance to be seen.
The two weeks leading up to my audition, it was basically all I could think of. My thoughts were glued in preparation – mostly in excitement and of course nervous anticipation. I knew this was the most important audition for me, personally, and all I wanted was to go in there relaxed and grounded… to show them who I am, with that quiet confidence… and do my pieces as I knew I could. I so badly wanted them to see how much I want this. If I wasn’t given a chance to vocalize it in some way, I hoped they would be able to see it oozing out of my veins.
The day came. I worked very hard to remain grounded and relaxed all morning. And I did. When I got there and saw the other professional actors waiting in the hall, the nerves came, but I kept that little inner smile of fire and confidence inside me. I knew I was deserving of this and I knew I could do it. All I wanted was for them to see this too.
The audition went really well. I did my pieces just as I would have hoped and left feeling like I showed them my true self. All I really remember is that I stepped out of the room and smiled.
Okay so I stepped out of the room and a WAVE of emotion and anxiety hit me. Ha!! Unexpected tears started to well up in my throat. I was so happy. So excited. So relieved. Appparrrently all that nervous anxiety I had worked so hard to keep down before the audition… remaining all nice and zen….decided to come flooodddinnng out immediately after! I must have walked 5 laps of the surrounding area, talking to my mother on the phone at 100 miles per hour, for 30 minutes. And even then I wasn’t completely off cloud 9.
So here’s the thing. I very well may not get it. They take 10-12 actors out of a 3 month cross-country audition tour. This is one of the most established places a Canadian actor can find themselves, so I know the reality is very, very limited.
But in those moments, when my imagination was full of images of living my dream… envisions of what it would be like if I got accepted… those feelings of what it would be like to be told “yes”…. I was the most happy that I’ve ever been.
Many times I tried to stop myself from having these thoughts. My reality mind would try to probe its head around the corner and remind me, “Cora… you know you aren’t going to get it.”
…You know they audition hundreds of actors
…You know you may just not be what they need this year
And yes. These thoughts have truth.
In the past it is these thoughts that were always most prominent. I would stop myself from imagining what it would be like if I got my dream – let alone ADMIT I was thinking it to anyone – because my reality mind knew to protect me. I never wanted the embarrassment and “failure“ of admitting my dream and then having to tell others I did not get it. I have always protected myself from heart break by telling myself not to expect anything, because to me “reality” seemed the more virtuous, admirable, mature way to be. I’ve let realities diminish this fire so that I wouldn’t have as far to fall.
I know I am shooting for the moon.
But… is it not okay to let myself dream?
I no longer think being “realistic” is the more virtuous way to be. I no longer care if people know I have a dream and that I may be forever striving for it. I no longer care that I may have to, time and time again say, “no… not this time.”
I know all these amazing, wonderful, beautiful feelings I’ve had this week – as I imagined the feelings that I would feel if I got my dream – may make the heart break that much more painful if I do not get it. But, I think it is worth it.
The happiness I felt in these moments as I let myself dream, were priceless.
When I let myself think of getting my dream, I feel full. I feel 100% confident and happy with who I am and what I’ve done.
Again. I very well may not get it, and I may be working myself up to a dangerous level of hope by keeping these thoughts…but what’s the point of having dreams if we don’t let ourselves have those feelings – of what it will feel like – to keep them alive? It is these feelings that keep us driving for what we want.
Dreams can hurt. Passion can hurt. When you want something that badly, it can be agonizing. But I would rather feel the agony of a longed for dream, than the soullessness of living in reality and protection.
Thank you to Amanda for letting me dream my dream out loud.Let yourself dream. Your soul is rooting for you. #dreams #dreambig #riskhappiness Click To Tweet
What do you think… is it too dangerous to dream?
Do you let yourself imagine yourself getting your dream? Or do you protect yourself by telling yourself you “will not get it?”