Chasing a Dream: Year 1 Almost Done

The end of Year One of my dream chase is rapidly approaching, and I’ve spent a bit of time ruminating on the events of the last year. Whew! It has been an exhilarating ride!

Where I Am Now

I have to say I LOVE MY LIFE. I LOVE that I have found strength and determination and adaptability that I wasn’t sure lived inside of me. I continue learning, having new experiences, and evolving from day to day. I waltz into new experiences with my eyes and my heart wide open, ready for whatever new adventure is around the bend. Having said that, let me talk about how I got here.

Getting Through The Tough Parts

About this time last year, I wrote about the difficulty of letting go of so many things—from the security of a “good job,” to leaving behind family and friends, to eliminating so many of our personal items in order to fit everything into a 6×8’ cube. Even now, I’ll ask Robert “did we keep the little 2-door cabinet that was beside the bed?” or “do you know if we have the record albums here somewhere?” Honestly, the odds are that if we didn’t NEED it, we don’t HAVE it. Sometimes I feel silly missing things like the 3-person porch swing I loved or having a hot tub on the back deck. Sometimes it’s as simple as knowing where the best fajitas in town are served (we just haven’t found them nearly as good here) or knowing how to get around town and find whatever I need without using our gps. Sometimes I just need a good, cleansing cry before getting on with the chase, so I just sit right down and have one. Then it’s over and I have things to do!


I’ve said it before: CHASING DREAMS IS NOT FOR THE FAINT OF HEART. There are a hundred challenges that you don’t THINK of when you embark on the pursuit of a dream, and they come from every direction when you LEAST expect it. Even just developing a new routine that fits into the dream chase is something to which I never gave a moment’s thought. I’m still working on those things, too: submitting on roles, seeking out classes and mentors, networking when I can, learning who I can trust and who is attempting to blow smoke up my ample behind. The bottom line is this: MOST people chase this dream when they’re in their 20’s. Being way past that has its own special challenges. Nuff said.

There Are Hard Lessons

In a city of several million industry professionals, they ALL claim to have something to offer, they ALL want you to pay them to teach you something, and you can spend money on that sort of thing until you’re destitute. So, you ask, what do you do in these cases? I have learned to set a budget for my career development and stick to it. I do the research, ask lots of questions, and TRUST MY GUTS. I’ve learned that if someone I’ve met ONLY contacts me when they want to sell me something, they are looking out for only their own interests and have no concern for mine. I’ve learned that if someone I have paid for services slams something I am: Southern, female, round or mature, they deserve neither my support nor my money. These are hard lessons, but they are GOOD lessons, and I am happy to have them.


One of the best parts of chasing a dream is that I’ve learned to celebrate my accomplishments. For example, I attended a comedy seminar a bit over a week ago. The seminar was offered by Chambers Stevens (who grew up in Hendersonville, Tennessee, and was highly recommended) and Andy Fickman (the director of Paul Blart: Mall Cop 2). The focus of the seminar was being funny, and each attendee prepared a short monologue to perform for the group, in addition to working with a small group in warm-up exercises. I love comedy. I LOVE laughing and making other people laugh. It’s something I would do for FREE because I love it so much.

I LOVE My Life!

I LOVE My Life!

I came away from that seminar celebrating my comedy. Being on the stage and seeing people’s faces during my performance was really exciting. As a performer, evoking emotion—surprise, delight, amusement, hilarity—is what I thrive on. And I came away from the seminar with a sense of accomplishment. It’s cause for celebration. Now I’m ready for the next one!


Thanks for being here.


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