In primary school I had a full schedule.
Breakfast Club and After School Club or Gymnastics, Choir, Rainbows. I played the recorder, bossed clarinet lessons on Tuesdays, danced away Saturday mornings.
When I got older – years 5 and 6 – I had something on every evening: clarinet, brownies, cheerleading, dance, choir.
We can probably credit my love for pasta and cheese on my earlier years of quick teas…
In years 7 & 8, it was cheerleading, Girlguides, dance on Thursdays and Stage 84 on Saturdays.
I started working as an extra on Waterloo Road (days off school y’alllllll). I left cheerleading and took up jazz.
In year 11 , I left Stage 84 and jazz just before exams – along with my excellent job as ‘girl walking in background’. After Guides, I went to Rangers and joined a slightly less strict performing arts club and stayed for a good few years. I even got to play Cinderella in the pantomime and took it extremely seriously as my debut into the world of showbiz. I also started my first blog.
Uni arrived, I joined the Newspaper and made another blog. I didn’t make it onto the cheerleading team.
After having to leave Uni after first term, between the bouts of panic attacks in my mum’s car outside the venue, I actually went back to performing arts. (She always made me get out of the car and go, and she always ended up being right.)
I left again to do my Journalism course, came back to help in a show and finally said my last goodbye when I moved to Rugby.
I haven’t been to a class or a course or an extra curricular in four years. Unless we count the 2 tennis lessons my brother and I went to (one ended up us concluding the pub was better).
Now I’m a 9-5 commuter. I experience serious fomo at all times so keep my options open and spend my evenings doing absolutely nothing.
I have the ever developing personality of a spoon.
Truth is, 7 year old me thought I’d be famous by now. So did 13 year old me as I got my side fringe cut in on my first day as an extra. I really thought ‘this was it’.
I’m pretty sure 18 year old me thought I was going to ‘make it’ as well; as I trotted off with my grades and my scholarship to honour Northampton with my charm, wit and general presence.
So now I’m playing the part of washed up child star, without the actual ‘where are they now’ show and also the, you know, childhood fame bit.
I didn’t really plan for anything other than performing arts or journalism.
Like, at all.
People laugh now when I say I was a cheerleader, or have an A* in Performing Arts. (Yet they apparently can still predict me being a total swot in school?) Now I’m not peppy or confident enough and can’t take a compliment for singing without offering an insultive comeback.
And it’s just
I think about it a lot; how I’d planned my whole life around an industry that now couldn’t be further from my comfort zone. And yet, a cheeky 3 mental breakdowns later and I still look at auditions or dances and shows and desperately want in on the action.
My passion for Journalism was drowned in structure and guidelines that took all of the fun out of it – so much so that my worst job would be to write for a newspaper, and yet I’d kill to have my own column.
Now, I want to run my own company – which seems bland and boring in comparison to my other goals. On the outside, I’m more of a ‘the ultimate goal is to work from Costa every day’ kinda gal.
And on the inside , I expect to be the best company owner, making millions of pounds.
And have I started? Yes. Am I still taking steps there? Nah I kinda got bored.
I expect to be the best at everything I try, and can’t compute living an ‘ordinary’ life when I filled my childhood with dress rehearsals, hobbies and skillz4dayz. But now if I don’t succeed quickly? That’s me done trying.
Which means, I’m stuck with a brain full of plans, ambitions, ideas but with no direction, no motivation, no Jazz hands.
I’m probably on plan S by now.
I’ve gone from testing waters in the arts world to deciding I could be a famous blogger, mental health ambassador, columnist, counsellor or psychologist, author, interior designer, millionaire by gambling, etsy seller, dropshipper, comedian, marketer for the biggest brands, make a million pounds in my first year at my current job – heck, I used to think I could be the next Sherlock Holmes and maybe find Madeline McCann.
My expectations are too high and I overestimate the impact I can have. Which means, in consequence, I give up and get deflated when it doesn’t work and wait for the next idea to hit me in the face like a passionfruit.
Who knew finding a missing girl wasn’t on everyone’s top 5 things to do at 13 list.
My ambitions in jobs and careers have always evolved around one thing: How I impact others.
I wanted to perform to inspire and entertain kids like me.
I wanted to write to comfort and advise people struggling.
I wanted to be a counsellor to change the generic templates and really help people.
I wanted to be famous to be known well enough to make my voice heard
I needed a blog to try and make people feel less alone
And let’s not forget, I’ve left two (almost three) jobs because I couldn’t make a difference to the way staff were treated by management or colleagues.
But none of my attempts seem to reach the finish line. So I’m stuck with a hugely restless brain of ambitions and a quitters attitude.
So now I’m back to the drawing board with plan Z, and I’m getting really tired. There’s so many things I want in life and almost all of them aren’t achievable right now. Some aren’t even achievable at all. And I’m finding it hard to accept in what can only be assumed as a slightly-early mid-life crisis.
I don’t really know how to be the person I would want to be. Or who I am right now. But I do know that I don’t help myself and need to get my childhood mojo back to reach for the stars.