“When life gives you lemons, you don't make lemonade. You use the seeds to plant a whole orchard - an entire franchise! Or you could just...drink lemonade someone else has made, from a can.” - Anton St. Maarten
Here's the latest "what's happening with grad school" update for those who are interested...
Yale = Not happening (old news)
Juilliard = Not happening (old news)
USD Old Globe = Not happening (rejection letter received in the mail yesterday)
NYU = Still Pending (on the waiting list, but not feeling optimistic)
Sooooo....My Old Globe rejection letter was received yesterday.
When I got home, there was a pile of mail sitting on the table and a package from a friend.
I saw the envelope from USD and my heart jumped up into my throat. I knew exactly what it was before opening it.
"F*^k." I said. Actually, it was more like..."F*^kity, f@#kin'-A. Really? F%^k."
Rip open letter to confirm suspicions.
Scanning...."Thank you for your interest and participation in the application process for fall 2013...blah, blah, blah....We wish we had more positions to offer...wish you well wherever your future plans may take you."
Staring at my shoes.
Oh, wait for it...here it comes...
Tears.... Welling. And dripping down my cheeks.
Like a baby.
Confirmed. No Old Globe.
Moment of silent, tearful sadness and then I notice the package from my dear old friend sitting on the table. We've known each other since 1st grade and she lives across the country. What could she possibly be sending me? It's not my birthday.
The box is wrapped up like Fort Knox, but when I finally get it open...this is what is enclosed...
A card of encouragement along with a small blank journal.
How did she know???
She gave me permission to post what she wrote inside. I hope that it will be an encouragement to all of you too...that the Universe sends us just what we need at the right time. This definitely helped to soften the blow of disappointment.
How 'bout this? Just think of this as a letter from your old friend to you! Here's what she wrote...
What's that saying? "When life hands you lemons, make lemonade?" All of your inner and outer work you have done and continue to do has a purpose, and I truly believe that hard work (which is just what you have been doing) never goes without success.
When I teach art, I often say that "sometimes the picture we intend to draw doesn't come out the way we want, see or have planned. That can be exponentially frustrating and disappointing, but it doesn't mean we should throw the picture away, or that it isn't good. It may even be possible to turn the picture into something new we hadn't imagined that we really love."
Now is your chance to embrace your amazing, smart, talented, unique, MORE-than-worthy-of-grad-school-or-Broadway-or-any-other-successful-path self and see what new ideas you have may unfold.
I am so proud of you. You are an inspiration and I hope you are proud of yourself.
Believe in yourself...Some of the best artists/performers don't have degrees, they have a strong will and dedication to the fulfillment of their ideas. You already possess these rare qualities, so allow yourself the space to shine.
I am always thinking of you and love you very much old friend.
And then I got an awesome supportive text from another friend with a slightly different kind of perspective...
Imagine you're receiving this one from a respected colleague who has been through it all and has the war-wounds to prove it!
First of all. F*^k them. It's their loss. F&#k 'em in the ear. If they don't like that f^%k 'em in the other ear. Secondly, you're past that bulls#*t. Thirdly, I am happy to talk about it. But I don't think you need mentorship. You need to trust your aesthetic. And go for it. Figure out what you want to say and scream it! Fourthly...F$$k 'em! P.S. Sounds like you are poised at the edge of discovery. Yay for you! Keep up the gallant fight sister!!!
No matter which approach appeals to you the most...Isn't it awesome to have amazing, supportive friends!?
Be grateful for your mentors, heros, champions, companions, partners, friends!!!
Hug them! Love them! Tell them how much you appreciate them right now! Without them...How could we possibly attempt to step outside of our comfort zones and dare greatly!?
There are more silver linings to come. But that's all I have time to write about for now. Thanks for reading.
"Mentoring can play an extraordinary role in cultivating the mind-set needed to take creative risks and keep operating in that anxious place where the best stuff tends to be birthed -- especially when your mentor is someone who's been where you are, lived, breathed, and danced with the same or similar-enough demons and elations, and found a way to harness them to create genius."
- Jonathan Fields, Uncertainty: Turning Fear and Doubt into Fuel for Brilliance