“You’re hired!” The two words every recent college graduate wants to hear. Who would have thought that those two words would lead me down a path of uncertainty, doubt, fear, anxiety, and indecisiveness? The job was entry level and it did not guarantee a single thing.
I moved to Los Angeles to first be an actress. After I realized that I was not naturally passionate enough to truly succeed in the craft, I figured out that my true passion was writing. I moved back home to Massachusetts after a mental breakdown in 2016 and I came back in 2017. I interviewed twenty-five times for personal, executive, and entry assistant positions. I had a decent resume, was qualified for all the jobs I applied for, and yet when the interviewer smiled and walked me out the building door, I was met with rejection twenty-five times afterwards.
“Was it me?” I thought to myself. It probably was, because twenty-five is a large number to be rejected by. Was it what I was saying? How I dressed? Was my handshake not firm enough? I’ll never know, and truthfully, I don’t want to ask either because it’s over.
I digress. Anyhow – I moved to Los Angeles now to be a screen-writer and I found myself seconds from drowning every month with little side jobs. Eventually, I did drown and I had to ask my uncle to pay my rent. Any young millennial trying to make it on their own knows that pain of not having enough financially and having to ask your folks for help because you’ll be homeless if you don’t. I wanted my parents to be proud of me and to tell their friends that their daughter is making it on her own. Unfortunately, I couldn’t make that scenario reality, and I bit my tongue and I asked for help.
Not long after I got a job as a production runner at an advertising company. It was less than glamorous. I was basically a glorified intern. I am not putting down the job. If I could clean a bathroom then I could do other things, right? That wasn’t the problem. The problem was, there was no path for me as a writer within that company. I was faced with the decision to stay and make do with what I was given or keep looking for at least the entry-level that could lead me into development.
I was stressed.
I was so stressed that I cried almost once week because I felt like there was no more meaning to what I was doing. I was working to live, but it felt like I was living to work. We all have to do things we don’t want to do to get where we want to be, but what if you’re climbing a mountain you don’t want to reach the top of? Should I be grateful that I am climbing a mountain in the first place? I think that is what society wants me to think.
Then it hit me. I don’t settle and that might be my biggest weakness and strongest attribute. I never settle. I don’t settle for friends, boyfriends, food, or jobs. I keep three people in my circle because I hate everyone else. I don’t date because I haven’t met someone I want to spend time with. I will drive twenty minutes out of my way to purchase the right kind of smoothie. Lastly, I will be homeless before I become one of those robots typing at a computer nine to five.
Not being able to settle is a curse.
It’s not a blessing to not want to settle, because I will live in my car and my life will fall apart. It is hard to tell yourself that you’re doing important things when you’re not doing what you want to do.
Here is why you should settle and why you should not.
You should settle sometimes because you need to. America is a working society and in order to achieve that false American Dream or at least some of what it is, one must have a job. I cannot go through my 20’s waiting for that right position because it may never come. Godot never came in Beckett’s Waiting for Godot. I cannot sit next to a tree like Vladimir and Estragon waiting for God to send me a sign. One must keep moving no matter what.
No. Matter. What.
You should not settle sometimes because you could trap yourself in a bad decision created from settling. When you settle, you receive half of what you need to fulfill your desires. Settling can set you back and will almost always keep you in place. You cannot move forward if you settle, but you can fall if you don’t. I ask the stars at night what it means to chase dreams. I cry in my car and hope that when I pray that there is someone or something listening.
Stephen King once said “Hope is a dangerous thing. Hope can drive a man insane.” The author is right. “What if I’m wrong? What if I am wrong?” I also ask myself, “What if I am right?” If this all means something and we are all here for a purpose on a path that was meant for greater, then I hope that I never settle for less than what I deserve.
Dear Reader: Don’t be homeless like me, but take a chance in your life. I’m taking mine right now, and I am leaping into darkness. I have never been more terrified in my life. I have no idea if there will be ground awaiting my feet on the other side, but I hope there is. Sometimes, that is all that matters.
P.S. – As always, never lose that spark, that light that fires your soul. Never lose your glitter. It is the only thing that makes you more than just human.