I Graduated! Now What?
A week ago I finally graduated with both of my degrees – my BFA honours degree in acting, and my BA in English. I can’t believe I’m actually done! No more class registration, or waiting for the early morning bus outside in the middle of a harsh Saskatchewan winter, or writing all of my term papers in the same week… I am currently both basking in the tremendous relief of it, and cowering under the shadow of impending existential dread.
It’s like I’ve officially become a grown up. I mean, I’ve legally been an adult for a little over five years now, but I’ve been living with my parents and maintaining a full course load. In the last four months a lot has changed for me. I’m living away with roommates, and now nobody is going to motivate me to be productive with a good grade and the promise of a piece of paper. I’ll admit it, that thought is a little scary.
So what do I do now?
Well, work, obviously. I still have my job at the restaurant. It’s summer, patio season, and if I bust my butt, I can make a great living in the next couple of months. It’s also audition season. There’s not a lot to go around in the small centre where I live, but it’s enough to keep me occupied for the next couple of weeks. I’ve also been reading again. I lost the passion of reading for fun somewhere in the slew of literature classes I took in university. Now there’s no pressure for me to finish a book and I can read whatever I want!
I had the privilege of working on a great show at my regional theatre in April and May, and no longer having the built-in luxury of doing something related to my craft every day means that I am also trying to do a lot to keep my skills sharp. I have a stack of plays and actor biographies on the go, and I try to do a little research every day. For instance, right now I’m reading Jenna Fischer’s book and it is FABULOUS! If you’re an aspiring actor in any capacity, I recommend picking it up. I’m literally going through it with a highlighter because there’s so much great information.
In other words, I’m trying to keep myself busy… and I think it’s working. I’m feeling cautiously optimistic about my personal momentum and career trajectory. I know that I haven’t picked an easy life for myself, but I’ve always liked a challenge, and to be honest, I’m too embarrassed by failure to quit anything. I literally kept my first job for four years even though I hated it because I was so scared of disappointing my boss. There’s no telling what lengths I’ll go to in order to pursue my passion. I know there will be some tough times ahead, but there is also so much to look forward to… and I can’t wait!