I’m 33. I guess I am grown up. I work, pay taxes and rent, go to happy hour. I’m grown.

But I’m not living my best life. Not the life I had envisioned for myself when I was a youngster with a wild imagination. Nope. I never thought I’d grow up working two serving jobs and living off tips and paycheck to paycheck. I grew up wanting to walk the red carpet and see my name on a movie poster. I grew up practicing my wave. I spent my teenage years trying to teach myself not to squint or blink when the flash of a camera goes off. And while the southern twang sneaks out now that I’m living back in the South, I managed to maintain a neutral accent whilst surrounded by those that use ‘ain’t’ and double negatives on a regular basis. I’ve been practicing being an actor my entire life yet I’ve done nothing to BECOME an actor. I don’t have an agent. My headshot are not up to date. I don’t have a video reel.

Something happens to us along the way. We change our dreams. We get into relationships. Some people have children. (Not me. Ew.) We’re told ‘no’ or ‘you can’t do that’. Something changes. Something changes and you’re left wondering where the time went or you lie awake and ask yourself why you never pursued that dream.

I lost some ambition along the way when I was doing work as an extra. I had a boyfriend that couldn’t understand why I was driving all the way to Los Angeles from Oceanside to stand around on set all night, take after take, no speaking roles, and not getting paid. He couldn’t understand that it felt like magic. It was a rush and a high. He couldn’t understand that being on set around the film crew and actors was putting me one step closer to my dream. Rather than be supportive, he felt it was a waste of time. I was young and ‘in love’ so I put that dream to sleep.

Or I guess down for a nap because my dream is awake and full of energy! Here’s what I know: I don’t want to wake up at 80 and say ‘I wish I had become an actor’ and yet, never took the steps to do so. While I’m still here in this lifetime, I want to make people feel something. I want to make them laugh, cry, and think on a larger scale. I want to use my platform as an actor to help others.

I believe in the adage, ‘fake it till you make it’. I also believe that if I continuously say ‘I’m an actor’, the Universe will say ‘YAS QWEEN, YOU ARE!’ and everything else will follow suit along with a little hard work.

For example, I told my new soul sister from my Ayahuasca retreat about my childhood dreams while on a ski trip last month. She said ‘I have just the person to get you in touch with’ and left it at that. Today, I just got off the phone with her friend, a casting agent. We had a quick 30 minute Q&A about what I need to do to make this dream a reality. Starting with new headshots. Photographer: BOOKED!

Last night at work, one of our regulars and I got to talking and, lo and behold, he’s an actor! We have a lunch date with another actor friend of his for some more insight on how to get me in the biz. You see what I mean?!

What I’m trying to tell you is don’t let your dreams stay asleep! Shake them awake. Tell them you’re sorry you let them nap for so long. Say it out loud. “I AM A (BLANK)!” Now say it again. Say it until you no longer feel silly or immature or like a fake. Say it until you feel it in your fucking bones because if you don’t believe it, who the hell will!