What do you do?
It’s happened to me a few times and I’ve watched the thing I’ve wanted, worked for and wished for, fall apart. But it was only the first time that it happened, that I myself fell completely apart.
All my life I dreamed of being an animator. A classical animator since computer animation didn’t exist when I was little. I absorbed cartoons from a technical standpoint for as long as I could remember.
I made flip books. I bought or borrowed so many books about Disney and other cartoon franchises. I worked on my drawing skills. And then, when I applied to animation at college, I didn’t make the cut.
The bottom fell out of my world and for the first time I was completely rudderless.
I remember standing in front of the animation admin person (hilariously I don’t remember who they were) crying my eyes out. I’m sure I looked pathetic and maybe a bit desperate. I wonder, now, if standing firm as they did was easy to do.
And today, I’m so glad I never got in.
I ended up in interpretive illustration and the a multimedia design course, which led me to the life I have now. One that has had so many branches and amazing projects. One that has helped, through my programming work, tens of thousands of kids learn the love of reading. I’m super fucking proud of that. Doing work that has a positive impact is my why.
But 19 year old me, in tears, only knew that the life she had mapped out was over.
She wasn’t wrong, but she was too young to see that sometimes the chosen path isn’t the best one. And if you’ll forgive me for getting a little woo woo here, sometimes the universe unfolds as it should. Her job was just to run towards her dreams, madly working hard.
In that moment when it feels like the stars are going to align and then they don’t, zig and zag and just keep going.