Anxiety about Time

My next big age milestone is twenty years old. I turn nineteen next March. Knowing this gives me so much anxiety about my life. I have journals from when I was eleven and in it I wrote much about what my life would be like once I was officially an adult. Eleven year old me thought I’d have an established career and have my own place. I haven’t done either. Most of my anxiety has to do with my career. Which is acting. I realized that I don’t truly convey how much I love it and want to pursue it.

As a younger child with hopes of becoming an actress I thought success was living in LA and being followed by the paparazzi. I was a kid who would walk into Rite Aid and run to the magazine section hoping to see pictures of Miley Cyrus or Hillary Duff. I wanted to be like them and be on TV and have people write about me in silly magazines.

But once I started my training at The Barrow Group when I was fourteen I no longer saw an end goal to acting. I just wanted to do it and be better at it. I’m not a great actress or the best in any room, I know that. I have so much to work on and explore (I wrote a whole three paragraphs relating to acting so that will be a future post). The point is that a few days ago I was thinking about little me, how she used to cry in her room hoping to know talented people, to work with them, to be part of an artistic community. At Stella Adler, I am. I know talented people, I’m in the same building with them. I also get to go see great people perform in productions and sometimes they’re friends of mine and sometimes they’re people I’ve grown up watching in movies.

Jake Gyllenhaal and I after “Sea Wall/A Life”

So, although I’m not a working actress(YET!), I am part of an artistic home. That has alieved my anxiety. Its comforting to know that I am doing what I want. Theres so many other things I want to do, but acting and theatre training are the main ones. So, when I wake up on most days feeling like I’m wasting my time, I remind myself that I’m not. I know people who used to say “oh, I want to do this and that” but never did or tried to. I did and still am. I’m always so weary with saying “I am a/an”, whatever the profession or title, because I never want to seem pretentious. But a recent conversation made me realize that it doesn’t matter what other people think, I’ve know that before, but she put it into perspective. Anyways, the point is that I am proud of myself. I’m a cautious person, but the best things or most exiting and rewarding experiences of my life have been done on impulse.

I need to be kinder to myself, I’m not dying anytime soon(hopefully), so when I feel restless that I’m not doing what I should be doing, I’ll remind myself of all I’m already doing. I have time. I’m only eighteen, although that at times feels too old to me. I think my anxiety regarding time and my productiveness will never go away. I’ll still have meltdowns about it, I’ll cry about it, write about it, sing about it. But I know that I’m doing something about this anxiety, but even more than that is that its motivating to me. As if I were proving my fears wrong.

-Annette

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