Tuesday, 9 October 2012

There's Nothing to Fear...Except Everything!

I’m not sure how much I’ve touched on this before, so this may or may not be news to you all, BUT…I am afraid…of everything. And I mean everything. I could sit here and compile a list of the many varying phobias I possess, but that would take too long and I don’t think you’d ever want to return to my blog again - another fear of mine! A quick background, however, may help you grasp just how serious I am about this.

As a child in gymnastics, I was nicknamed Taylor “Hesita-stings” and always opted out of after class games, stating that they were “too dangerous” and “someone was bound to get hurt”. I also earned the nickname “Casper”…but that was more related to my skin pigmentation. My innate fear of bridges was tested by my mother’s “character building” exercise, when she coerced me across the Capilano Suspension Bridge. There were many tears. There were also many tears leading up to my trip to the UK to work and tour for a couple weeks, as well as many, many panicky tears leading up to my trip to LA to study for a few weeks. Which brings me to my next point…

My trip to London ended up being AH-mazing. I got to see everything: museums, the London Eye, even a musical in the West End, for free! And don’t even get me started on my time in LA…I met the most wonderful people (who I’ve kept up relationships with) and got so much inspiration to keep working on my acting career! I just always have to go through this horribly anxious routine leading up to everything I sign up for - trips, jobs, even high school dances - where I panic and assume everything will be terrible and go wrong…until I get there, and (99% of the time) have the best experience in the world. And then I feel silly, and apologize to everyone who had to see the preemptive melt down….awkward.

This past week, I’ve spent a good part of my time at the Vancouver International Film Festival volunteering. Well, you can imagine the lead up to this one. I was totally stoked to sign up for this, until the week before my first scheduled shift. And then it was all, “I do not want to do this”, “I’m dumb for signing up” and I even had to cancel (what would have been) a delicious turkey dinner that I had mistakenly scheduled for during one of my shifts. You can see I was clearly not looking forward to doing this…and truly only because I was absolutely terrified of being horrible at it and being in the way of everyone.

SO, flash forward to 5 shifts in and only 2 left, and wouldn’t you know it…I’ll be disappointed when it’s over. The people who are organizing the festival are the most lovely people you’ll ever meet, and take very good care of the volunteers. And for future reference…taking tickets from people truly isn’t as scary as one might think. I mean, nobody’s died on my watch! It has been such a great experience; I’ve met lots of interesting people, networked a bit and even got to see a couple of really cool films!

I know it’s ok to be scared sometimes, I mean, caveman Taylor would probably live pretty long considering my cautionary actions, but it’s no use giving up on what could be great life experiences because of fear. Especially not in this industry. So all of you Nervous-Nellies, take it from someone who is on your page…and who has an incredibly enthusiastic, character-building-centric mother…once in a while, let go of the anxiety and try something new! You never know, you may find yourself sitting in a production of Billy Elliot in the West End with a bunch of cool Mexican kids!*

*In case you’re wondering, that’s a totally positive memory…it’s a long story, but I definitely toured Mexican kids around London. And got to see Billy Elliot. For free.