My sophomore year of high school we did Fiddler on the Roof for our musical. During the auditions we had the choice to sing a solo or do the audition with a group. All my friends chose to sing together, but I decided to try a solo. I thought it would help me stand out. I knew I wasn’t a very good singer, but I figured I could at least be guaranteed a chorus part, and get brownie points with the director.
Instead, I was the only one who didn’t get a part.
Eventually I found out that my teacher (the director) didn’t even remember me auditioning. Awesome. Because high school isn’t awkward enough, now I felt even more invisible. I would rather be told that I’m the most vile person on this planet, than not be remembered at all.
I basically fell apart for a few days after that. My poor mom didn’t know what to do. This was reason 385049 why she wanted me to be a doctor. The only rejection there would be from med schools, and that wouldn’t happen for another six years. Plenty of time to prepare.
After that episode, my dreams of being an actress kind of went away. When you handle rejection that badly, you know something is not for you. It’s just not healthy. My mom was pretty happy when I made that decision. Being a typical teenage girl, though, I made sure her happiness didn’t last long. My new dream was to work for Cosmopolitan magazine.
The poor woman just couldn’t win with me. I like to think it was easier for her to support that dream though. At least she didn’t have to hear me talk about who I would be thanking at the Oscars. Instead I talked endlessly about my NYC loft and how I would decorate it.
When I first read The Devil Wears Prada, I honestly thought it had been written about my future life. Creepy.
Eventually I realized journalism wasn’t for me. I love to write, but I like to do it on my terms. None of this “story assignment” business. I write what I want to write, okay?
Sometimes I wonder what would have happened had I followed that dream. Would I have landed an internship with a major magazine in college? Maybe even a job after graduation? Would I be writing about the best hairstyles for summer everyday? Would I be writing this from my little New York City apartment?
Who knows. My dream changed when I was in college, and I’m glad it did.
I will admit that sometimes I feel like I gave up. Like I should have kept going with that dream just to see if I could do it. But I know I wouldn’t be as happy as I thought I would be. I mean nobody can say I didn’t try. I was the freaking editor-in-chief of my university newspaper when I realized journalism wasn’t for me.
I think certain jobs require certain personality traits. And I slowly but surely realized I do not share personality traits with Anna Wintour.
I’m not classy and confident. I’m awkward and goofy.
I love fashion. I also really love wearing my polar bear bathrobe for hours on end.
I would love to have fun, dating stories to tell. I also love not having awful, dating stories to tell.
I always forget my sunglasses when I need them. Anna would never forget her sunglasses.
Plus we all know that if I ran a magazine, it would feature Justin Bieber on the cover, recipes for cupcakes, tips on how to get away with wearing jeggings everyday and weekend plans that involve more laundry nights than date nights.
So sue me.
I love my job. It’s literally exactly what I wanted in a first job, and exactly what I worked for. I worked hard to get internships my last year of school and I worked hard at those internships. Luckily for me I truly liked the work I did there. PR fits me, which is good because all those little outfits Anna Wintour wears probably wouldn’t.
Sometimes I feel guilty because I know so many people who are still looking for their perfect job or perfect life, and I feel like I shouldn’t be so happy with my life. I know my friends are happy for me, yet I still feel bad. I’m ridiculous like that.
But then I look up at the crack in my ceiling of the apartment, listen to the sound of the little mouse I’m convinced is living in my wall, and think about how I’m stuck here for another 12 months. Then I stop feeling guilty. I also start to think about how I should probably work on getting furniture, because having a dance studio instead of a living room isn’t really practical.
THEN I remember that all I have in my freezer is two bottles of vodka and frozen strawberries.
My life may not be perfect, but it fits me perfectly.
P.S. My mother got over me not being a doctor. She actually loves what I do now and is instead putting all her efforts into finding me a doctor husband. I can’t imagine this is a surprise to any of you.